The Say No Campaign is a nationwide campaign against growing level of Impunity and bad governance in Nigeria, with Zonal Hubs and representation across the states of the federation.
The Say No Campaign (SNC) is seriously concerned with the contrived state of anarchy, political victimization and anomie playing out in the environment. This may well be a dress rehearsal for 2015 general elections.
The rumble continues with personal ambition superseding the will of the people. The outcome of setting a dry bush on fire can never be predicted. In all these, as ominous as the fact that our leaders who are supposed to inspire hope, have themselves become a huge challenge to the rest of us.
To be candid, SNC believes that impunity, just like any other systemic rot, is a malady which flows from the top to the bottom. Now, the country is awash with leaders who do not give a damn about anything. They do not care about principles, about public opinion, about decorum; in fact, the word “shame” is a total alien to our ruling class today. Needless to say, our youths are negatively affected by this unsavory trend.
The SNC wishes to highlight the major sore points that currently characterize the State of Political Impunity, and which constitute potential or active dangers to the 2015 general elections
Activities of Security Institutions:
The recent withdrawal of the security details attached to the speaker, House of Representatives, Rt. Hon Aminu Tambuwal, ostensibly because of his defection from the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressive Congress (APC) is appalling, unfortunate and unconstitutional. No part of our constitution says the Speaker of the House must come from the majority party. Section 50(1) only says there shall be a Speaker and a Deputy Speaker of the House, who shall be elected by members from among themselves.
The action of the Acting Inspector-General of Police. Mr Suleiman Abba, in this matter is tantamount to usurping the role of the judiciary, which is supposed to interpret the Contentious Section 68(1)(g) of our constitution. The present trend where our law is being applied selectively to achieve political interest/gain is preposterous, and this must stop.
Recent development has also shown that using the security institutions, particularly the police as a tool to witch-hunt perceived political enemies is another political impunity that must be addressed. It is not for the police to interpret the constitution or house rules.
This no doubt also reflects impunity in the polity. This is considered another attempt to destabilize the polity and provide room for some shenanigans in government to extend their evil rule. It is worrisome to hear orders from some quarters asking the Members of the House of Reps to defy resumption dates, this desperate moves must be checked.
Ceasefire Agreement Ruse with Insurgency:
The recent statement by the Nigerian Government to have reached an agreement with insurgents is now a confirmed ruse. A government with all military structure and huge budgetary allocations annually cannot decipher what groups they have made contact with, gather adequate intelligence before going public. This is an indictment on the top military echelon in the military. It was another diversion for the public to believe that government is working towards stability but as it is evident the reverse is the case.
The citizens have lost confidence in the military and its capacity to respond to emergencies. Recent reports have it that Nafada and Bajoga both in Gombe States are under serious attack and our trained security men abandoned their weapons and fled. If you cannot tame a group of “untrained” young men running around, how much more would you respond to external threats? This is food for thought.
INEC, IDPs and Election in the North East:
Indications are rife that electorates in some local governments in the North East taken over by insurgents and declared as caliphates, elections are not likely going to take place in those areas except something more positive happens. Information also have it that voters card are done by proxy in very large numbers, this is not the norm and an attempt to subvert the process. Also, what provisions are underway for those in the IDP CAMPS?
Solidarity with the people of Burkina Faso:
We cannot conclude this press briefing without extending our solidarity and that of Nigerian citizens to the upright people of Burkina Faso in this period of their National re-awakening. We commend them and solidarise with them for taking the concrete steps, full of sacrifice and perseverance to throw off the yoke of one impunity while continuing to insist that it should not be replaced by another impunity.
We recall with pride our own January uprising of 2012, support the people of Burkina Faso in struggling to reclaim their humanity and dignity.
We join them in affirming that their victory is born of their uprising and in no case can it be confiscated by the Army. We thus join them in demanding the immediate hand over of power by the army to a civilian led transitional government made up of the organizations of the people who made the uprising, and that will organize new elections.
The Burkinabe Uprising is an inspiration to every people all over the world fighting impunity; yet it is also a warning to every would be usurper lurking in the dark shadows of the military, hoping to steal the victory of a people.
· That all political leaders, particularly the leadership in the Senate should stop any inflammatory statement henceforth that is likely to overheat the polity and uphold the rule of law.
· That the Police should be more professional in deploying ‘orders from above’ and be careful not to thwart democracy.
· Deliberate efforts should be put in place by the presidency and other stakeholders to ensure that Peace and Security returns to the North East and Nigeria as a whole and not to use the situation as an alibi towards reconsidering the elections.
· That INEC should begin to investigate the proxy collection of voters card activities going on in the North Eastern states and sanction those involved in the process whilst looking at strategy and approach towards ensuring that all parties including those at the IDPs are not disenfranchised.
· That the Presidency should apply decorum in its involvements and meddling with states affairs and allow the state assemblies function with less interference.
May God bless Nigeria and may corruption and impunity end in Nigeria.
Awwal Musa Rafsanjani
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