Conundrum Buhari kicks against reprisals NASS to work with Executive on insecurity – Lawan You can’t stop protest against insecurity - Falana
As the country continues to grapple with the dire security situation, President Muhammadu Buhari has condemned attacks on farmers by bandits in Damkal and Tsanwa villages in Batsari Local Government Area in his home state of Katsina in which at least 30 people were killed on Saturday.
The president in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, in Abuja on Sunday, said the president warned that “no one in the country has a right to take laws into his hands by the way of self-help or revenge”, adding that “killing people in the name of revenge is not acceptable.
“Local communities that catch bandits should hand over the suspects to law enforcement authorities instead of meting out capital punishment, leading to a cycle of revenge and counter revenge.”
The president charged community leaders and the local authorities to continue to partner with law enforcement agencies in order to for bandits to surrender, warning that “The authorities must be allowed to investigate and deal with any breach that occurs. There is no place for violence in a decent society.”
In a related development, President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has expressed the readiness of the National Assembly to continue to work with President to find lasting solutions to the current insecurity in the country.
Lawan stated this in Malumfashi in Katsina State where he went to honour the Constituency Empowerment programme by Senator Bello Mandiya representing Funtua Senatorial District.
Speaking on the recent deadly attacks in the state by the alleged bandits, he said, “I want to assure you that we are going to continue to work with President Muhammadu Buhari till we are able to find lasting solutions to this problem of insecurity in our country.
“We will also ensure that government provides infrastructure across the country that makes life meaningful for Nigerians,” Lawan said.
Also, human rights lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana, SAN, on Sunday chided the Presidency over peaceful protests, stressing that the federal government lacks the power to stop people from protesting against service chiefs for allegedly poorly handling the war against terrorism in the country.
Falana called on the police to desist from harassing any protester.
Last week, presidential spokesperson, Garba Shehu, had alleged that about 2,000 persons were hired to stage a protest against the service chiefs to embarrass the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd).
“The Presidency wishes to caution a section of the political class against misleading the public and inciting protests against the heads of military institutions,” Shehu said in the statement.
“This has become necessary in view of received reports that about 2,000 men and women have been hired to demonstrate against Nigeria’s service chiefs on Monday.”
In going down memory lane, Falana said it was still early for the president to forget how he and other leaders of the APC, including the immediate-past National Chairman of the party, Chief John Oyegun, and the incumbent Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, protested against insecurity on November 14, 2014.
According to the senior silk, only last week, a group of protesters staged a procession in Abuja in support of the prosecution of the counter-insurgency operations by the service chiefs and demanded the expulsion of Amnesty International from Nigeria without any hindrance.
““The authorities of the Nigeria Police Force are urged not to harass aggrieved Nigerians for protesting against perceived injustice in the country.
“After all, a group of citizens were allowed to demonstrate in Abuja last week in support of the prosecution of the counter-insurgency operations by the service chiefs.
“On that occasion, the group called on the Federal Government to expel Amnesty International from Nigeria for criticising the service chiefs.
“Without any evidence whatsoever the Presidency has alleged that those who are calling for the replacement of the service chiefs are working for the Boko Haram sect!
“However, since Nigerians have the fundamental right to demonstrate for or against the Federal Government without official fiat the Presidency has no power to stop any peaceful protest in the country.”
“It was in exercise of the right of freedom of expression that APC leaders including General Muhammadu Buhari, Chief John Oyegun, Dr. Sylvester Onu and Mr. Rotimi Amaechi had participated in the protest held at Abuja on November 20, 2014 against insecurity under the erstwhile Jonathan administration to look for those issues that make a difference in their individual and collective lives,” he said.
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