Be Vigilant, There Is No Question Whatsoever That democracy Is In Danger – Activists To Nigerians
Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka and activist-lawyer Femi Falana (SAN) has warned Nigerians to be wary of the coalition formed by former President Olusegun Obasanjo, purportedly formed to rescue Nigeria and be a third force to the two major parties in the country.
The duo made this call at the 80th post-humous birthday of the late human rights lawyer Gani Fawehinmi (SAN) themed ‘Democracy for the masses through proper and effective governance in Lagos.
According to to the activists, the country is in danger when politicians like Obasanjo, who “supervised the sacking of democratic governments” in Oyo and Anambra states respectively, now pretend to be the messiah.
Recall that NIGERIA NEWS had reported that the ex-president had called on President Muhammadu Buhari not to contest next year’s election as he had “failed and afterwards, formed the Coalition for Nigeria Movement on January 24, 2019, which he said was meant to save the nation.
Soyinka said: “All I want to say in connection with the title of today is just one word: vigilance….There is no question whatsoever that democracy is in danger.”
“And so I find it ironic, that those who’ve proved themselves the enemies of democracy who’ve really taken, they’ve really committed acts, not just negligence, but actually inaugurated certain policies which contributed to our being at this point again are once again coming out and positioning themselves as saviours, as messiahs, as the sole possible rescue mission that this nation can even dream of, a nation of nearly 200 million people.”
“I find it very strange, and I find it even stranger because at the beginning of this movement towards ‘Rescue Mission’, there were one or two organisations that came out under different names and they had people in them whom I considered worth following, worth encouraging, worth encouraging others to study closely and even consider following.”
“The next thing I knew, these movements were being hijacked by the very people who laid the foundation, an ironic word by the way, for the collapse of the democratic edifice.”
Soyinka disclosed that he turned down one of the groups when it approached him.
He said: “The next thing we know, they are forming coalitions and I was invited by one of the rescue missions to address them and I telephoned them and I asked the question, ‘wait a minute, which one are you? Are you the original people I saw or is there a faction or is there now a fatherly umbrella under which everybody is moving?’
“And I told them; don’t even come near me, if you’ve signed up on one of those who are the enemies of democracy in this nation.”
“Those who inaugurated so-called constitutional amendment programmes, total charades, to assist them to continue to run, which has been scuttled by the direction known as tenure elongation, third term, etcetera for which the entire national treasury was almost bankrupted. And suddenly, here they are they are forming coalitions all over the place, once again, confusing people.”
“Who are the genuine leaders, who are those that we can trust? The answer to that is very simple: look at their track record. That’s all.”
He, therefore, admonished Nigerians not to allow themselves “to plunge into a zone of amnesia, in which you conveniently forget unpleasant realities.”
“We’ve had presidents in this nation, some of whom inaugurated a never-ending democratic process, which landed us eventually under the most brutal dictators that this nation has ever known.”
“We had others also who actually supervised sacking of ‘democratic government’; I’m speaking of Anambra, I’m speaking of Oyo State. A governor was kidnapped under their watch with their complicity; in another instance, thugs actually entered the House of Assembly, sacked the legislators and installed their own candidates; under the same watch.”
“And they call themselves the God-designated watchman over the fortunes of this nation? And suddenly, here they are and I see Nigerians flocking to them and asking them once again to lead.”
“Mind you, they’ve said very clearly if it becomes a political party count me out o, but paths are already being beaten to their doors, control by subrogation.”
“Even if they do not individually put themselves back in the position of power, they are already smoothening the way for their surrogates, their stooges, so that they can continue to misrule from their cosy farmsteads. So, all I’m urging is: be very vigilant. Just look closely at their records, look at the company they keep.”
Soyinka, thereafter, called on the youths to “grow up” and take political power.
“Why can’t a new generation actually rise, throw us all out of the window and take control of their own lives by themselves? Why do we keep recycling the same jaded, traitors, enemies of the people? Why do you need to go for blessing somewhere if you’ve made up your mind that it is time to take control of your own existence?
“Once again, I don’t want to be misunderstood, I know what I think about this government when voting time comes, I know exactly where I’m going to cast my vote but I’m not going to allow anybody to hoodwink me and say I will show you the path. No, this will be adding insult to injury.”
Falana, in the same vein, also stated that the government would confiscate some of Obasanjo’s assets, including a university, “at the right time.”
He said: “Our country is undergoing serious crises of governance but we must be very careful so that we do not allow those who destroyed the country, those who ruined the nation to pose as the saviour of our people.”
“There’s somebody living very close to this place who has been parading himself as the saviour of our people; this guy ruled the country for 11 and a half years cumulatively – three and a half years under the military, eight years under a civilian dispensation. And even wanted to do a third term but Nigerians rejected him.”
“The guy is going round the country now, claiming to have solutions to our problems; I wish to say here and we are challenging him to name one thing that he did, any problem of the country that he solved.”
“On the contrary, this guy wasted $16billion to generate darkness for the country. This guy formed and took over the resources of the country blindly under what he called blind trust.”
“Nigeria is the only country in the world where a sitting President and a sitting Vice-President established private universities when the government refused to fund public universities and other tertiary institutions.”
“But let me tell, Gani went to court to challenge the extortion of state governments and contractors by a man who realised about N7billion to set up a so-called library.”
“Under the constitution, any gift received while you are in office, other than customary gifts, is forfeitable to the state; therefore, at the right time, this country, when it is properly organised will take over all those universities and libraries that were set up with public funds and that may be sooner than you think.”
Also, the senator representing Kaduna west, Shehu Sani, also stated that the country is not yet in a true democracy. “In fact, our country is sick, the republic is sick; our people are dying, violence, bloodshed, killings, mass murder is becoming the emblem of our democracy today.”
“We are out of PDP misrule but we will be deceiving ourselves to say we are in the Promise Land; we are not in the Promise Land. We must keep vigil.”
“The political ruling elite are not yet prepared to see to a democratic Nigeria. Nigeria’s political reality is about personal interest.”
“Those who destroyed our country in the past are very much present as born against.”
He, therefore, called on Nigerians of integrity to support Buhari because “You can’t build a country because of the integrity of one person. The integrity of one person is not enough to rule and sustain a state. We have a President who is a man of integrity but integrity is not enough for leadership.”
2019 presidential aspirant, Omoyele Sowore also lamented over regret that Nigerians rejected Gani for Obasanjo in 1999. He said: “I want to say very briefly that Nigeria must be regretting that when they had a chance to choose between Chief Gani Fawehinmi and a Barabbas, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, they decided to choose Obasanjo instead of choosing Gani Fawehinmi and that is why we are regretting today.”
The event also featured former Kaduna State Governor, Alhaji Balarabe Musa, Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, Afenifere chieftain, Senator Femi Okurounmu, among others.
Atiku sues Lauretta Onochie for N500m as PDP reveals reason
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has been reported to have demanded that , Lauretta Onochie, the Social media aide to Nigerian President, ha President Muhammadu Buhari’s aide c, for an apology and N500 million for slanderous statement she made against him.
NIGERIA NEWS report that, this was in wake of the tweet Onochie tweeted of the 7th of May in which she claimed, Atiku was on the watchlist of the United Arab Emirate (UAE).
Onochie who is reputably known for always taking to twitter to take on the PDP’s presidential candidate was at it as she said, “Atiku on UAE watchlist- Security sources,” she went on further to state that, “Security operatives in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are keeping a close tab on a former Nigerian Vice Pres Atiku Abubakar who has been in the Middle East nation for several weeks now What is he doing there?
“Me: Shopping for Terrorists?”
In another tweet, she mocked Atiku over the termination of Intels Pilotage Contract by the Nigeria Port Authority. She said, Nigeria Ports Authority Terminates Intels Pilotage Contract over Failure to Remit $145.84m After about two years of bickering, the NPA has terminated its boats pilotage monitoring and supervision agreement with INTELS Nig. Ltd. (Atikulooted Ltd)
Me: Long overdue? Absolutely.
Meanwhile, Atiku Abubakar in a letter dated May 14 and addressed to Onochie by his lawyer Mike Ozekhome, has threatened to press a charge against her if she did not meet his demands.
Atiku said: “Your odious publication is clearly also aimed at rubbishing our client’s image and reputation,” “It has caused him national and international backlash and embarrassment and done incalculable damage to him.
“Your publication has also caused our client, in the eyes of reasonable members of the public, unspeakable odium, obloquy, hatred, ridicule and psychological trauma.
“He has thereby been subjected to the shame and infamy of being viewed by members of the public as not only corrupt, but as a terrorist and sponsor of terrorism. Numerous telephone calls, emails, visits, letters and private social media chats by his family members, friends, political and business associates, and international statesmen and women in the last few days attest to the alarm and serious concerns generated by your false publication.” the letter read.
How APC hired an Israeli based firm for elections – Frank
Comrade Timi Frank, former assistant National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressive Congress (APC), applauded a press release by a U.S based agency – the Digital Forensic Research Laboratory of the Atlantic Council.
The US firm had revealed ‘Archimedes’, a political consultant firm in Isreal role in spreading fake news through the social media about PDP Presidential Candidate – Atiku Abubakar.
Facebook expelled Archimedes from the network on Thursday due to its “coordinated and deceptive behavior”. The popular network also removed dozens of accounts and thousands of facebook pages that are created to disrupt elections in Countries in Africa, with a few sparse exercise in East asia and South America.
In response to the ban, Mr Frank, through a comment on Saturday, said the world would eventually realize all the lies behind Gen. Muhammadu Buhari’s proclamation as the victor during the last election.
One of pages removed by Facebook on Thursday, as revealed by Frank, was loaded with viral false news and targeted attacks on Abubakar, Nigeria’s former vice president.
According to Timi Frank, the report reads:
“that on the overall, the misleading accounts had reached some 2.8 million users, and the pages had engaged over 5,000 followers, according to Facebook’s estimates.”
After praising Facebook, He went on further to say:
“Nigerians ought to be worried about how the APC-led government is spending huge amount of money just to discredit the rightful winner of the 2019 presidential election, Atiku Abubakar.
“I believe that if a lie goes on for 20 years, truth will definitely catchup with it one day. It will not be long before Nigerians will realise how desperate and fake President Muhammadu Buhari is in his bid to hang onto power.”
The political nationalist called on the rest of the world to acknowledge the press release of the Associated Press as well as the resulting damage accomplished in the last election to Nigeria’s second largest party and its presidential nominee.
“The AP’s report has clearly shown the level of lies sponsored against Atiku during and after the last general election. The campaign of calumny has not stopped but Nigerians should henceforth disregard malicious reports in the social media against the former VP,”
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