Lawyers, CAN And Others Fires President Buhari
Lawyers, CAN And Others Fires President Buhari
Lawyers have berated the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government over what they have described as Tuesday’s unconstitutional invasion of the homes of Senate President Bukola Saraki, and his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu by the police and the Department of State Services (DSS).
The action was reportedly meant to stop the Senate leadership from presiding over the Senate plenary that was expected to witness the mass defection of some All Progressives Congress (APC) lawmakers in the red chamber.
The legal practitioners, who spoke to Daily Independent in exclusive chats observed that the action flouts all democratic norm, adding that it was a national disgrace.
According to Leon Mbakwe, Executive Secretary, Lawyers Against Corruption (LAC), the development showcases that Nigeria is in a state of anarchy presided over by a civilian dictatorship.
He said, “What is currently at play in Nigeria today is anarchy. We have in our hands the worst form of civilian dictatorship ever in Nigeria.
“Some people only removed their military uniform, donned civilian garb and started pretending to be democrats. It is a national shame.
“The precedent was set when the homes of judges were invaded and nothing happened. It appears they are doing everything to bring every other arm of government under subjection. Yet what makes a democracy is not the executive but the legislature and judiciary.
“Things are happening and nobody is calling the Buhari government to order as if executive power has no limit; and yet we boast that Nigeria’s is a constitutional democracy.
“But he who lives in a glass house should not throw stones. They are setting a dangerous precedent that will return someday to hunt them.
“This government has lost sight of the fact that most Nigerians are now more conscious of democratic norms and tenets, and that they are using them to measure and assess this government.
“Unfortunately operators of this government are putting personal interest ahead of the collective interest of Nigerians.
“The action is unconstitutional, undemocratic and a national disgrace.”
Adesina Adegbite, National Welfare Secretary, Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), also spoke in the same vein, noting that the development is politicking assuming a dangerous dimension, for which Nigeria should be wary.
“What is going on in Nigeria is very unfortunate. Politicking in Nigeria today is taking a dangerous dimension. You get the sense that the current government of President Muhammadu Buhari is becoming desperate,” he lamented.
He added, “If things have reached this screeching halt, what then should we expect when the election is few weeks away? Every Nigerian, including the president’s diehard supporters, should be worried and think about the country first; and move quickly to see how we can call the government to order before it is too late.
“Indeed, all is not well with Nigeria. What happened today is, to put it mildly, an attempted coup against the National Assembly.
“If the president believes that some members of his party are planning on defecting from his party today, that does not justify moving against the leadership of the Senate in order to stop them from playing their constitutional role for which they were elected.
“The action is uncalled for; it is an affront and an embarrassment not just to the National Assembly but the entire country as well.
“Nigeria does not exist in isolation. Whatever happens in the country today is available as news to everybody all over the world. Thanks to the internet.
“Nigeria is being ridiculed by the government in power. This action is, to say the least, a dent on the image of integrity this president is laboring to project.”
For Barrister Olusina Fasugba, the action of the security agencies offends the fundamental human rights of the affected officers of the Senate.
He said, “This country is supposed to be governed by laws and the constitution, which is the foundation of all laws in Nigeria.
“Moving against the Senate leadership so as to stop them from functioning in accordance with the powers conferred on them by the constitution is a complete departure from the rule of law.
“It departs fundamentally from all democratic ideals; and it’s an infraction on the fundamental rights of the Senate leadership.
“The constitution provides for the fundamental right of free movement for all citizens. It also provides for freedom of association. So why should the government in power be averse to people exercising their freedom to freely associate by moving against the leadership of an arm of government?
“Are they saying that Nigerians have ceased to enjoy the constitutional right to join any political party of their choice?
“Why is the government seeing it as a confrontation which they feel obligated to stop?
“Ours is a nascent democracy that requires nurture not torture. The government of the day must be careful not to act in a way and manner that will torture and abort our democracy before it attains maturity.
“Every Nigerian must come out to do something about this democracy of vengeance, rancour and acrimony that we have in Nigeria today.”
CAN Condemns Siege On Saraki, Ekweremadu’s Residences
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has reacted to Tuesday’s siege on the residences of Saraki and Ekweremadu.
In a statement, the association described the action of the security operatives as “a siege against Nigeria’s democracy”.
The statement signed by the media assistant to the CAN President, Adebayo Oladeji, warned President Muhammadu Buhari and the Nigeria police to desist from threatening Nigeria’s democracy.
“We express grave concerns over the poor handling of police’s invitation to the Senate President, Saraki, over the infamous Offa robbery saga that led to the death of no fewer than 30 people. And the
alleged plan by the EFCC to arrest Ekweremadu over alleged money laundry.
“The Christian umbrella body condemns in strong terms the way and manner the police were deployed in subjecting the leadership of the National Assembly to needless embarrassment and harassment. The ongoing action of the police is a siege against democracy.”
Siege To Saraki, Ekweremadu’s Residences Dangerous, Primitive — Makarfi
Senator Ahmed Makarfi, former governor of Kaduna State, has condemned the invasion of the residences of principal officers of the National Assembly on Tuesday by security agents, saying it is an assault on the leadership of the National Assembly and a clear breach of one of the tenets of democracy.
In a statement by his media adviser, Mukhtar Zubairu Sirajo, Makarfi who is a presidential aspirant on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) also lauded the defection of some APC lawmakers to PDP, saying it is a wise decision.
The statement reads, “Nigerians woke up again this morning (Tuesday) to the rather very sad and disturbing incidences of the siege to the residences of principal officers of the National Assembly, by detachments of the Nigeria Police Force, obviously to stop them from presiding over the day’s session, which eventually witnessed the defection of some senators from the ruling party.
“Senator Ahmed Mohammed Makarfi considers this assault on the leadership of the National Assembly, an independent arm of government and one of the legs of the tripod upon which the presidential system rests, as dangerous, primitive and one that constitutes a very serious threat to democracy in our country.”
SOURCE The Independent