Ahead of the Presidential election, hundreds of civil society groups across the country today adopted the All Progressives Congress, (APC) Presidential candidate and its Vice President Prof Yemi Osinbajo.
The groups which met in Lagos under the auspices of the Nigerian Human Rights Community, (NHRC) said given the alternatives available for Nigerians, the APC candidates will best serve the interest of Nigerians.
Addressing a crowded media event today, the Director of Publicity of the NHRC, Mr Taiwo Adeleye and its Assistant Secretary General Azubuike Egbe said Nigerians will be committing a grave blunder if the Peoples’ Democratic Party, (PDP) returns to power. The two were flanked by other officials, Mr Wale Arogundade, Sola Ajayi and Mrs Feyi Omolade.
The NHRC, a coalition of hundreds of civil society and community based organisations, CBOs said in its view, a return to the locust years will be disastrous for the future of Africa’s most famous country.
The NHRC General Secretary said “The victory of the PDP will mean Mr. Corruption sitting as the President and Commander-in-Chief of Nigeria and Mr. Graft as the Senate President. As civil right movements that have fought a string of battles since the years of the military, we have historic responsibility to ensure this does not happen. Interestingly, the forces backing the PDP elements were some of those that ran the country to a shipwreck especially in the military era after which some of their cronies took over at the national level in 1999.”
The group said it considered certain factors, the personal credibility of the two leading contenders and the need to save Nigerian political space by corrupt and morally deficient people.
“It will be worst to have a man that has no iota of credibility at home and abroad to sit as the No one citizen of the country. It will be disastrous to have a proven corrupt man as the most important figure in Nigeria. We belief with the credibility of Buhari and Osinbajo, their errors of recent past can be corrected in the most honest manner”
NHRC stated further referring to the PDP “when you have a dishonest and untrustworthy person as your President, you will be putting the entire lives of the people on a dangerous and perilous scale. A man whose words cannot be trusted should never be entrusted with the sovereignty of any serious country.”
On the crisis in the judiciary, it stated that “for the past three weeks, the country has been battling with controversy over the removal of the CJN, Walter Onnoghen. We caution that the crisis in the judiciary has the potential of damaging the democratic credentials of the country. We are particularly concerned that the CJN has been accused of procuring 55 houses. This is ridiculous. It is embarrassing.”
The group noted that Nigerians have also been informed that the CJN has close to 1million dollars in his account, representing more than 200 percent of his entire life savings assuming he saved all his earnings since he was enlisted in the judiciary.
“This is a clear case of corruption involving the No 1 Judicial officer in Nigeria. His claim that he forgot to declare the assets is even more bewildering. Even Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote cannot forget a whole I million naira in his account without knowing he did. In this circumstance, it is surprising that the former CJN is still sitting on the judicial throne.” The NHRC asked the CJN to resign immediately. “We urge him to quit immediately in the interest of the country.”
In a similar endorsement, the Coalition of Political Parties in Lagos state, COPPILS, has thrown their weight behind Buhari’s presidential ambition.
Addressing a crowd and other APC stalwarts including minister of power Babatunde Fashola, governorship candidate of the party in Lagos, Babajide Sanwo- Olu in Lagos Thursday convener of the Coalition Hon. Akinola Obadia read statement of the team, saying that the endorsement is coming after they studied Buhari’s achievements in three years which surpassed the PDP in sixteen years.