Saturday, 10 August 2019

Big Tension, VoR warns Buhari; Says Nigeria will collapse if the president fails to Address Killings, Harassment, Others In the country

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Voice of Reason (VoR), a group of Yoruba entrepreneurs, professionals and academics, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to quickly address national issues of concern in order to prevent the disintegration of the country.

The group made the call during a press conference which held in Lagos, on Friday.

In a statement, Olufemi Adegoke, chairman of the group, said the call became necessary to save the country from sinking into a state of anarchy.

“Many problems in the polity have been identified as being worthy of statesmanlike deliberation and contemplation. All these issues, if not properly addressed would lead to chaos and finally, the disintegration of the country,” the statement read.

Among the issues raised by the group are the “hurried release” of Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), and the arrest of Omoyele Sowore, presidential candidate of the African Action Congress (AAC) in the 2019 elections, by members of the Department of State Services (DSS).

While Sowore was arrested by the DSS two days before a planned “RevolutionNow” protest, El-Zakzaky, who has been in detention since 2015, was recently granted permission by a court for a medical trip to India.

The group said the case of Sowore and El-Zakzaky should send a signal to the Buhari’s administration.

“The arrest and subsequent detention of Omoyele Sowore, the erstwhile presidential candidate of the African Action Congress, for the “crime of a call for revolution” which is neither known to Nigerian statutes on criminal law nor to the Constitution of the country, is a worrisome development,” the statement read.

“The hurried release of El-Zakzaky after the protests by IMN turned bloody and the subsequent subtle threat from Iran is another case in point.

“VoR advices the government of the day to tread cautiously in the minefield of global geopolitics and seek a diplomatic of political resolution to the problem. We are a Democracy, and it is necessary for governments, just like individuals to respect The Rule of Law. This includes the prompt obedience of Court Orders.”

The group called for equity and transparency in government, saying “the shoddy conformation process in the Senate is disgraceful and gives the impression that we effectively have a Rubber Stamp legislature in place.”

VoR also demanded a stop in the use of policemen as bodyguards, adding that the practice is “depleting the number of policemen available for conventional police work.”

“In their place, a corps of suitable trained and licensed ex-servicemen may be made available for citizens and officials who require bodyguard functions and are ready to pay the appropriate fees,” it read.

Other issues addressed during by the group include security in the south-west and the rest of the nation; the security architecture of Nigeria; restructuring; welfare and equipment for members of the armed forces; economy; power; youth unemployment; and RUGA settlements.

‘Pray for the unity of Nigeria’ — Gbajabiamila begs Nigerians

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila has urged Nigerian pilgrims in Saudi Arabia to pray for the country’s unity as they join Muslims globally to observe Arafat.

Gbajabiamila made the plea in a statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Lanre Lasisi, on Friday.

Arafat, a 230 feet granite hill about 20 km east of central Mecca in the plain of Arafat is also known as the “Mount of Mercy.’’

According to Islamic tradition, the hill is the place where Prophet Muhammad delivered his farewell sermon to Muslims, who accompanied him for the Hajj towards the end of his life.

It is also said to be the place where Adam and Hawa reunite on earth after falling from heaven and where Adam was forgiven, hence it is known as the mount of mercy.

Islamic faithful believe that prayers offered on the mount receive speedy answers as it is a place of mercy and they are expected to fast.

Gbajabiamila, who is currently performing the hajj, expressed optimism that with prayers, Nigeria would move to the next level.

“I want to urge all our pilgrims to pray for the unity of Nigeria; we need the prayers because the government is not relenting as it is striving to make life better for the citizens.

“We also need to pray for the general wellbeing of all Nigerians; Arafat is a special day that Allah answers prayers.

“I call on Nigerian pilgrims to utilize the opportunity,’’ he said.

The speaker said that the importance of prayers in the life of any nation could not be over-emphasized.

He also commended Nigerians currently on pilgrimage for their upright conduct and abstinence from activities that could tarnish the image of the country.(NAN)

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