2019 PRESIDENTIAL AND NATIONAL ASSEMBLY ELECTIONS AND NIGERIA


Upon a sincere review of the conduct of the 2019 presidential and national assembly elections, one will obviously admit that the said elections were marred by organised criminality on the part of certain political parties and their leaders.

A close monitoring of the conduct of the said elections will clearly show that three new additions or dimensions to electoral corruption have entered the center stage of electoral corruption in the country, namely: suppressed voting, burning of INEC offices and kidnapping of election officers.

I demand that these serious acts of criminality must be halted. So, there is an urgent and immediate need to bring the perpetrators to law after the general elections. It is expected that the law enforcement agencies should fish out the culprits and their sponsors.

Political brigandage in our country has continued because the notable politicians are treated as above the law. They corrupt law enforcement and electoral processes and are not brought to law to account for their actions. They are like ‘demi gods.’ Their agents of evil are shielded and/or protected.

Acts of electoral corruption have remained with us because the winners accept the corrupt victories. The point must be made that it is corruption to accept an electoral victory founded on electoral corruption. Integrity is about rejection of corruption and corrupt practices.

On these elections, it is tearful and painful that some Nigerians lost their lives in course of discharging their duties as election officers. Will their killers be brought to law? 

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I WILL SOON BE BACK


I apologize for my absence. I will soon be back. I had wanted to come back with writings on the presidential and national assembly elections voting experience of Nigerians. It turned out that the said elections were postponed by the electoral umpire based on logistics and operational challenges.

UCHE WISDOM DURUEKE AND JONES ABIRI’S CASE


‘I thank you very specially, the President of the Civil Liberties Organization ( CLO), Barr. Uche Wisdom Durueke, for your good intentions and action when l brought Chief Jones Abiri’s matter to your notice.

When you heard of the judgment at the Court in Yenagoa; you promptly demanded to have the judgment with a view to filing an Appeal in pursuit of Chief Jones Abiri’s fundamental human Rights. After l got the judgment and sent it to you, you promptly went to work and prepared  a Notice of Appeal for us to file at the Court Registry in Yenagoa. Not only that, you volunteered to represent him at the Court of Appeal in Port Harcourt, at no cost to the family, should the Appeal be filed. Incidentally, we were not able to do so based on discouragement from certain quarters.

One lesson I have learned from Chief Jones Abiri’s saga is that people are united by global, continental and national instruments on human rights and that those who would volunteer to fight your cause might not necessarily be members of your ethnic group.

May God bless you, Jones Abiri is back home to his family and the joy this has engendered is boundless.

This journey cannot be complete without mentioning you. It would amount to being ungrateful, if l fail to remember and mention your service of love. Thank you, Senior Comrade.’

Above is a post I culled from the Facebook Wall of Alagoa Morris expressing appreciation to my little committment to the pursuit of the fundamental right of  Jones Abiri.

I am grateful, Alagoa Morris. I want to assure you that I will remain focused and committed to the cause of the human rights struggle in the country.

BENUE STATE, NIGRRIA MOURNS 


The killing of about 73 natives of Benue State by rampaging armed herdsmen left the State in werping and pains. Benue State became a river of blood and tears. 


The killings by herdsmen has become so worrisome as there are not yet any concrete and measurable strategy by the federal government to halt their menance. The cattle colony being proposed by the Federal Government is like saying kudos to the herders. The first thing is to bring under the law. 


One notes that cattle herding is a private business just like farming; both need lands. It is being asked: Is it empirical to advocate that the farmers should give away their lands to the cattle rearers who have openly, consistently and stoutly opposed ranching? Unlike the farmers, the herders have an option of ranching which gives them many advantages, which include living settled lives: the purpose of setting up the normadic education policy. Establishing cattle colony has both short term and long term consequences. Presently, many refer to it a process of colonialism. There is no doubt that it will breed future violent conflicts which the consequences may be more destructive. 


I think the issue will not be resolved by land conscription by the government by any method but by enabling the parties sit and discuss and may be come to terms on a road map to sustainable peace. 

RECENT KILLINGS IN NIGERIA


​LET ME NOT BE SILENT AMIDST INJUSTICE
Sincerely, we are not building a nation. Nations are not built by speeches, but by deeds. When you listen to our leaders, you will think that they genuinely believe in peace and unity of this country as a people. Sad to state that if you evaluate their conducts and actions, you may start crying. How many can walk their talks on unity based on equity and justiice? It is jard to find or get. They are great hypocrites. There is so gross pretence in our country. The quest for political positions and patronages have blinded many and made the others dumb. While ethnicity and religion have robbed the conscience of the country. Otgerwise, why are people silent on the recent killings?

Many are criminally silent on the killings going on because they want to protect certain parochial interest(s) and/or obtain certain favour(s). Many, like the chameleon, have moved away from the positions they held in the past in similar situations to that of rationalizing the present killings. This is very painful. I know that justice has no ethnicity, religion, gender or age. Anyone can be a victim of injustice. So, I will always remind myself that there is always a tomorrow and it comes with surprises. Yes, tomorrow comes with its packages. The truth of life is that tomorrow often comes with baggage of surprises and unique situations.So I speak out in important or crucial moments so that I can find strength tomorrow. I therefore implore all to speak out! Say NO to the killings going-on! 

The killings have exposed the hypocrisy in many who parade themselves as part of the conscience of the country. I am not from the North Central; Benue State or Taraba State. I am speaking out because life is sacred! It could be anyone or the people tomorrow! Life has a way of unleashing tricks on persons and people. Let justice be done always, and there will be peace always

NIGERIA POLICE AND INFRACTION OF HUMAN RIGHTS OF CITIZENS 


It is disheartening to read that the Imo State Police Command is keen on frustrating a peaceful protest. This is disheartening because the same Command has never raised any issue with or aborted any Pro-Imo State Government rally. 

What is now unfolding, therefore, is a deliberate and calculated abuse of the fundamental right of citizens to associate and express themselves. This should be condemned. 
The duty of the Police, during peaceful rally or protest, is to provide security to ensure that the participants in the peaceful rally or protest are not harassed by those opposed to their expression of their views, miscreants and hoodlums. Next, so that the participants do not take the law into their hands. 
It is important to note that the instant peaceful rally is not a professional rally but a sit in a place solemn rally which will not bring the participants in contact with  those not for the rally. Anyone not interested in the rally or opposed to it has not business going there. Police is needed to ensure that level of discipline and not frustrate the rally. 
The Police is to watch the conduct of the participants. If any breaks the law, no doubt, such a person is to be picked by the Police and subjected to the due process of law. This is what the Police is expected to do, and not to concoct unfounded reasons to deny citizens their guaranteed right of association and free expression. 
I hereby call on Mr. President, the Inspector General of Police, the Police Service Commission (PSC) and well meaning Nigerians to call on the Commissioner of Police, Imo State not deny these citizens their right to freely assemble and freely express themselves which are constitutionally guaranteed rights. 
The organisers should be taken by their words. Their letter and the press release speak for themselves. If they infringe the penal law, they verily know that they are accountable.
Let us grow our democracy. The Nigeria Police Force is not established for those in power only. It exists for all the citizens. It must endeavour to isolate itself from taking side on issues and abusing rights of citizens.
I call for rule of law and justice! 
 

(The Notification Letter to the Commissioner of Police, Imo State and the Press Release by the Group on the reaction of the Commissioner of Police.) 
A PRESS STATEMENT ISSUED BY THE IMO PEOPLES ACTION FOR DEMOCRACY (IPAD) AT THE END OF THEIR EMERGENCY MEETING ON THE PLOT TO SCUTTLE THEIR PEACEFUL RALLY BY THE IMO STATE GOVERNMENT USING THE POLICE.
The Imo Peoples Action for Democracy (IPAD) has noted with dismay the plot by the Imo State Government to use the Imo State command of the Nigerian Police to scuttle our peaceful rally scheduled to commence on 18th December 2017 in Owerri. 
As a responsible Organization, we had earlier written to both the Nigerian Police and the Department of State Services to inform them of our rally and for them to carry out their constitutional obligation of providing protection for the rally. While the later saw no problem in a peaceful rally, the former could not conform to the provisions of the constitution. 
The Imo State command of the Nigerian Police which the public presently perceive as compromised by the Imo State Government, expectedly raised objection to our peaceful rally citing flimsy reasons. After a careful review of the development, we hereby state as follows:
1. That our rally has been planned to be peaceful and non confrontational and cannot be a threat to peace and security in the state.

2. That the 1999 constitution as amended has given us the right to peaceful rally which the police cannot remove.

3. That the police should refrain from being used as a tool to suppress the civil rights of the citizens.

4. That we are perplexed as to why a sponsored pro government group “Rochas Mandate” would be allowed and protected to hold a rally on the 15th of December and then decide to scuttle a peaceful rally of the people. 

5. IPAD will continue with her peaceful rally as scheduled on the 18th of December 2017.

6. That the Imo state government and the Imo state command of the Nigerian police should be held responsible if the rally is attacked by paid agents since they have shown strong intent to scuttle the rally.

7. That the Inspector General of the police should immediately call the Commissioner of Police in Imo to order to ensure he respects the right to freedom of assembly in Imo state.

8. That we commend the DSS command in Imo for displaying an uncommon maturity in appreciating and respecting our right to peaceful assembly.
Signed:
Aku Obidinma                                  Marjorie Ezihe

(Coordinator)           (Secretary Org. Committee)