CISLAC and ERA/FoEN consider it an embarrassment to Nigerians and an insult to our national psyche, the video viewed on national television showing elected representatives of the people saddled with the duties of making laws for the peace, order and good government of the State degenerating into such level of chaos, violence and disorderliness that inflicted degrees of bodily injuries that resulted in hospitalisation of others
We are alarmed at the preceding events which indicated an attempt by five legislators in a house of twenty three members purportedly impeaching the Speaker and replacing him. This act, which is a flagrant disregard of all laid down rules of the House and the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is not only illegal, unlawful and undemocratic, it is also immoral, retrogressive and a threat to our hard earned democracy.
CISLAC and ERA/FoEN categorically rejects the unprofessional, biased and reactionary role played by the Nigerian Police which ordinarily should have mediated and prevented the breakdown of law and order. The sight of erstwhile security officials participating in the brutalization of fellow citizens is an eyesore that portends great danger to peace and security and unbecoming of a civilized society.
We are concerned that unleashing of thugs and engagement of militants of achieve personal political goals at a time when the polity is being unnecessarily heated by unhealthy political manoeuvres towards the elections in 2015, is an implicit endorsement of electoral violence and invitation to anarchy which can derail our efforts ad deepening democracy and promoting peace and development in our nation.
CISLAC and ERA/FoEN is also worried and divisive roles played by political parties which should ordinarily play mediatory roles and provide a level playing ground for their members.
We call on the Rivers State House Assembly to quickly retrace their steps, return to the path of lawfulness and resume the performance of their constitutional functions to bring normalcy to the state.
CISLAC and FoEN calls on the Inspector General of Police, to initiate proper investigation of the roles of his men and the circumstances leading to the resurgence of militants and thugs and ensure that culprits are arrested and made to face the full wrath of the law.
We call on political parties to be neutral and promote internal party democracy by ensuring adherence to the rule of law and party constitutions to ensure inclusiveness and conform with best practices and global standard practice of political party operations
We call on civil society, the media and all citizens to be vigilant and collaborate to ensure that selfish and desperate politicians do not succeed in truncating our march towards democracy as this nation belongs to us all and is bigger than the ambition of any single individual.
Auwal Ibrahim Musa (Rafsanjani)
Executive Director, CISLAC
Director, Corporate Campaigns, ERA/FoEN