Eminent personalities and leaders of the mainstream socio-cultural groups in Nigeria, yesterday, issued a red card to President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC), resolving to work for the emergence of new leadership in the country during the forthcoming general elections.
The leaders, who met in Abuja under the auspices of the Summit of Nigerian Elders and Leaders, drawn from Afenifere, Middle Belt Forum, Northern Elders Forum, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, and the Pan Niger Delta Forum, reviewed the State of the Nation in terms of the economy, security, human rights, as well as recent political developments and came up with a damning verdict that the Buhari administration had drifted from the liberal democratic path which Nigerians had fought for over the years.
Prominent Nigerians who attended the summit included Chief Ayo Adebanjo, Chief Edwin Clark, Air Commodore Dan Suleiman, Prof. Ango Abdullahi, Senator Suleiman Dansadau, Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife, Prof. Gordini Darah and Senator Bassey Ewa Henshaw. Others at the event were the Secretary of the Afenifere, Mr. Yinka Odumakin and Dr. Alfred Mulade, spokesman for the Pan-Niger Delta Forum.
The summit observed that under the current administration, democracy had come under persistent assault following the rising trend of calculated assault on constitutional governance and rule of law in the country.
The summit, which held for several hours behind closed doors, resolved that there was an urgent need for Nigerians to seek a new leadership that will not only arrest the slide away from democracy and the rule of law, but will ensure the emergence of a truly federal, constitutional democracy in Nigeria.
In a communiqué issued at the end of the summit, the leaders condemned the continued detention of persons granted bail by courts of competent jurisdiction, including the ECOWAS Court, as well as the unlawful harassment of media practitioners. They argued that going by the recent trend of events, Nigeria was gradually descending into a full-blown dictatorship where citizens’ rights under the constitution can no longer be guaranteed or respected by the government of the day.
The summit condemned the release of detained Boko Haram terrorists without due process and their alleged clandestine recruitment into the Nigerian security agencies. The leaders urged the President to use his good offices to secure the immediate release of Leah Sharibu, Chibok and Dapchi girls, and other innocent Nigerians still being held by Boko Haram. The summit also rejected the illegal occupation of farming communities by invaders who sack and displace the indigenes. It urged the Federal Government to act swiftly to free these communities from illegal occupation and bring the perpetrators to justice
•Credit: New Telegraph
SOURCE :The Nigerian Voice (local news)