The Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) has condemned in absolute terms the statement of President Muhammadu Buhari where he threatened Nigerians, and especially south-easterners, with state violence reminiscent of the Nigerian civil war era.
Acting National Chairperson of the party Abiodun Bamigboye and its National Secretary, Chinedu Bosah gave the indication in a statement they jointly signed and made available to the NationalUpdate on Friday.
It would be recalled that President Buhari on the 1st of June, 2021, while responding to the growing violent attacks on government facilities notably police stations and INEC offices, had said, “Many of those misbehaving today are too young to be aware of the destruction and loss of lives that occurred during the Nigerian Civil War.
“Those of us in the fields for 30 months, who went through the war, will treat them in the language they understand”.
The statement the party indicated, does not just show Buhari’s poor understanding of the causes and instigating factors of the violence that is rapidly engulfing the Southeast of Nigeria, but also the dictatorial and violence-mongering mindset of the president and the present administration.
“It also exposes the insensitive character of the President, especially as regards the open sores that the memory of Nigerian Civil War represents.
“We condemn the acts of individual terrorism which is what obtains by the killings of security operatives especially the rank and file and wanton destruction of public property in the southeast.
“However, we of the SPN reject the president’s approach of threatening violence of the civil war proportion.
“About 2 million people were reportedly killed in the 30-month civil war, with Easterners the major victims many of whom did not bear arms or were in the battlefields.
“So a civil war-like response by the Nigerian state suggests that innocent Nigerians of Igbo extraction will be made to pay for the atrocities of the criminal elements who attacked security agencies and INEC offices.
“Already, it is the militarization of the zone and gross violation of rights of citizens, coupled with the state violence on pro-Biafra agitators, which has led to extra-judicial killing of hundreds of citizens, which have contributed to mobilising support for separatist agitation in the Southeast.
According to the statement, we believe that the President’s reference to Nigerian Civil War, at a period when many perceive him as sectional and clannish, is insensitive and irresponsible.
“While Buhari was threatening southeasterners with the memory of Nigerian Civil War, the same president could not arrest the deadly national crises such as herdsmen-farmers conflicts, banditry, Boko Haram insurgency and kidnapping. “Just few days ago, dozens of kidnapped students of Greenfield University in Kaduna State were released after the parents paid over N180 million, with five students killed. Yet, government could not lift a finger.
“The government reference to Nigerian Civil War, aside evoking emotions of Nigerians, especially the southeasterners, will also paint the picture of a government more interested in repressing a section of the country than addressing national security challenge.
The party said it is completely oppose the ossified thinking within the government that self-determination agitation is a crime.
Explaining its position on further on that the statement indicated that the current neo-colonial arrangement, coupled with undemocratically-arranged, elite-oriented constitution, is the real crime against Nigeria and Nigerians.
“Unfortunately, all the so-called national conferences, confabs and constitution reviews, were not only undemocratically convened, but were also aimed at maintaining the present neo-colonial, elite arrangement.
“Virtually all the constitutional conferences, save for the 1961 plebiscite that led to removal of southern Cameroun from Nigeria and the creation of the mid-western region in 1963 lack democratic participation through referendum or plebiscite.
“It is therefore not accidental that continuous agitation over marginalization and self-rule have continued to trail Nigeria’s political development.
“This has been further amplified by the neo-colonial rent-seeking capitalist economic system being practiced in Nigeria.
“It is in the light of this, we of the SPN call for a democratically convened Sovereign National Conference comprising of democratically elected representatives of labour movement, ethnic nationalities, peasant farmers (crop and livestock) , traders, artisans, professional groups, , etc. to deliberate and decide the way forward for Nigeria including the socio-economic system that Nigeria will practice and a new constitution.”
Given the utter failure of capitalism, especially in its neo-colonial and neoliberal form, in Nigeria, we in the SPN believe that only a socialist system including the nationalization of the commanding heights of Nigeria’s economy under a democratic control and management of the elected representatives of the working people can engender Nigeria’s development. It is only through this kind of socialist planning that the huge human and material resources of the country can be used to improve the lots of the vast majority of the people, not a privileged few as presently obtain. Indeed, behind the growing agitation is also mass poverty, unemployment and mass suffering as a result of capitalist programmes implemented by the successive governments.
“Conclusively, we of the SPN call for an end to reigning state terror on citizens not only in the southeast, but also throughout the country.
“We demand the respect for the right of Nigerians to self-determination and an end to all forms of violence against citizens.
“The SPN has consistently called for the formation of multi-ethnic and multi-religious defense committees in communities which could be armed if necessary but whose operation must be under the democratic control of the community people.
“Also importantly we call on the labour movement to mount pressure through a series of mass actions on Buhari government not to carry out policies that worsen the deteriorating security situation that has already led to death of thousands of lives and destruction of property.
“If such action is seriously undertaken then Labour will have the opportunity to present a real alternative to the failing policies of the capitalist parties and politicians.
“We call for a democratically-convened Sovereign National Conference of the working people, ethnic nationalities, etc. to address Nigeria’s socio-economic, political, security and nationality crises.”
Bello’s achievement is only in birthday jamboree, photo-ops with celebrities – CNPP
Conference of Nigerian Political Parties, Kogi State chapter, has berated Governor Yahaya Bello of the state for his perchance for celebrity parties but clueless about the economic challenges facing the State
In a statement signed by the State Chairman Comrade Mohammed Kabir and Secretary, Mouktar Atima, the CNPP said the only visible achievement of the Bello-led administration is its proven expertise in organising birthday parties and photo-ops with celebrities.
CNPP noted that the recent consumer price index report released by National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) last week Tuesday should be of serious concern to Kogi state government.
“Last week, NBS report showed that food prices were highest in Kogi state in the month of May. Same report showed that neighbouring Edo and Ekiti states recorded lowest increase in the same month.
“The latest NBS report makes it fourth month in a row that Kogi is topping the unenviable chart as the state with the highest increase in prices of commodities.
“In the face of the this alarming trend that affects the livelihood of our people, Governor Bello is only interested in social and political jamborees,” the statement reads.
CNPP stated that it obvious that the Governor Bello-led administration is clueless on how to approach the emerging economic realities in the state.
“The NBS report said the food inflation on a year-to-year basis was highest in Kogi at 32.82 per cent while neighbouring Abuja at 16.91 per cent recorded the slowest rise in year-on-year inflation in the country.
“While neighbouring States and the FCT are fairing better, Kogi State Government remains clueless as to the cause of the biting inflation in Kogi.
“Till date, the state government has not mentioned the issue not to talk of evaluating the situation and proffering solutions. All we see and hear is birthday celebration and fruitless engagements with celebrities.
“Go to any market in Kogi and compare prices of food stuff and other essential commodities with what is obtainable in other states and you will be surprised.
“Make further enquiries on how much each commodity was sold last month and you will confirm the sad reality the people of Kogi state are faced with.
“This is a state where local government workers, teachers and pensioners are being paid in ridiculous percentages.
“This is same state where local businesses are struggling to stay afloat because of unfavourable policies of the same government. How do we expect the masses to cope?
“There is serious and growing hunger in Kogi state. This is a time bomb that must be attended to immediately.”
The coalition of political parties therefore called on Governor Bello to “outgrow childish tendencies and face the reality of real governance”.
Marwa urges parents to also stay away from drugs so as to monitor their wards against the menace
Thee Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Brigadier General Mohammed Buba Marwa (rtd) has challenged parents to live by example by also staying away from drugs so they can be in the right frame of mind to monitor their wards against the manace of drug intake and abuse.
Marwa who spoke on Friday during a meeting with critical stakeholders in Lokoja, Kogi state capital, during his familiarization tour of the NDLEA Kogi Command advised parents to carry out drug test for intending couples as a way of checking drug intake and abuse.
He said the process for reducing drug intake and abuse starts and rest with the family unit, .
He warned parents to constantly monitor the activities of their wards and children and advised religious bodies to intensify their preaching and counseling to their followers against indulging in the illicit drugs which has become a national tragedy.
He attributed the incidence of insecurity across the country to illicit drugs consumption as he also decried the high level of damage illicit drugs has done to Nigerians,
Marwa pointed out that banditry, insurgency, kidnappings and anti-social behaviours of the citizenry which is on the rise is due to high consumption of the psychotropic drugs.
The chairman urged all stakeholders to partner with the agency to fight the scourge which is impacting negatively on the social economic lives of the country .
He said the NDLEA under his watch is determined to reduce its production, distribution and consumption of the drugs to its barest minimum.
According to him the NDLEA is working round the clock to prevent people from having access to drugs by confiscating and destroying the illicit drugs as he said he is committed to smashing drugs supply chains.
He described the drug consumption demand of the country as alarming, insisting that all stakeholders have critical roles to play in bringing down the demand.
The NDLEA Chairman advise parents on the need to regularly carry out drug test for intending couples as a way of checking drug intake and abuse.
The Kogi State Commander of NDLEA, Alfred Adewumi, commended the chairman for successfully repositioning the NDLEA which has turned the heat on the saboteurs with high quantum of seizures and arrests.
He said the state command is not resting on her oars in the fight against illicit drugs across the Kogi state.
Stakeholders at the meeting including the persons living with disabilities, NCWS, NURTW, and others at the meeting promised their resolve to work with the NDLEA to reduce drastically the incidences of drugs production, distribution and consumption.
Lawan remains evasive as he finally speaks on Twitter ban
President of the Nigerian Senate, Ahmad Lawan Friday was still not really forthcoming about taking a stand against the ban by the Federal Government on Twitter, an action that has generated widespread reactions.
Lawan, however, expressed optimism that the planned dialogue between the federal government and Twitter will end the ban on the microblogging site in Nigeria.
The Senate may have disappointed many Nigerians on the expectations that it will at the resumption of plenary on Tuesday touch the issue of the ban on Twitter by the Federal Government as no motion or any matter of urgent national importance was moved.
There were high expectations as the two chambers of the National Assembly held their first plenary sessions since the government the suspension was announced.
The Senate considered many national issues except, Twitter’s indefinite suspension.
When they resume plenary on Tuesday, they immediately went into a closed session an action people believed was for them to mitigate against any motion or open debate on the fragile issue.
Last Friday, Lai Mohammed, minister of information and culture, announced that the federal government suspended the operations of Twitter indefinitely.
The minister had said the government was forced to act because of “the persistent use of the platform for activities that are capable of undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence”.
On Wednesday, the chairman Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Sen. Ajibola Basiru, also had declined to speak on the ban on the matter when he addressed Senate correspondents as he claimed he had no mandate of the Senate to speak on the issue.
“If I express any opinion, it will be my personal opinion and there is the tendency that my opinion may be judged to be that of the Senate,” Basiru said.
“So, I don’t have the mandate of the Nigerian Senate to talk on the issue of Twitter.
“I will exercise restraint and be on the cautionary note so that I will not be quoted as speaking for the Senate on the Twitter ban.”
But on Friday, Lawan was non-committal about the matter.
“Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed had, on Wednesday, said that Twitter had reached out to the federal government for dialogue over the decision of the Nigerian government to ban the operation of Twitter within Nigerian space,” he said at a media briefing on the 2nd anniversary of the Ninth Senate on Friday in Abuja
“Our belief is that Nigerians need Twitter and Twitter needs Nigeria. We believe that this engagement will resolve issue. I’m an optimist. I believe that all of us would have learned our lesson.”
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