The leadership of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has warned the Presidency and the Nigeria Police not to do anything capable of threatening the survival of democracy in Nigeria.
Reacting to the invasion of the official residences of the Senate President, Bukola Saraki and his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu, CAN warned the presidency to desist from using the Nigeria Police to pull down democratic institutions built at a great price, which includes, but not limited to, loss of lives and imprisonment of many patriots in the past.
We express grave concerns over the poor handling of police’s invitation to the Senate President, Saraki, over the infamous Offa robbery saga that led to the death of no fewer than 30 people. And the alleged plan by the EFCC to arrest Ekweremadu over alleged money laundry.
The Christian umbrella body condemns in strong terms the way and manner the Police were deployed in subjecting the leadership of the National Assembly to needless embarrassment and harassment. The ongoing action of the Police is a siege against democracy.
CAN notes with every sense of responsibility that the only difference between democracy and dictatorship is the presence or absence of the National Assembly. As stakeholders in the survival of the Nigerian democracy, we have no choice but to speak out against unfolding political imbroglio that is capable of not portraying in good standing in the comity of nations.
We caution the Police against being used to threaten democracy. CAN needs to remind the Nigeria Police that once a suspect has been invited to any of its offices, the best international practice is to exercise patience until the invitee fails to honour such an invitation. We are shocked, disappointed and alarmed at the aborted moves by the Police to stop both the Senate President and his deputy, from attending Tuesday’s proceedings for whatever reasons.
We urge the Presidency to avoid any action that could threaten the democracy of our nation. The Nigeria Police are supposed to be neutral in order to ensure the survival of democracy. We call on both leadership of the National Assembly and the Presidency to stop acting in a manner that constitutes international disgrace and embarrassment. It is needless to remind the legislative and executive arms of government to work in synergy for the interest of our nation’s democracy.
CAN calls on Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and other professional bodies, like the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), among others, to remain vigilant in rescuing democracy from forces that are hell-bent in derailing it.
We appeal to all security agencies to stop being involved in partisan politics. Nigerians must realise that leadership goes around and comes around, but our country will continue to remain. CAN calls on all service chiefs, including the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Kpotun Idris, not to destroy our democratic institutions through needless partisanship.
A WORD IS ENOUGH FOR THE WISE.
We urge you to use your credible and popular media to publish this statement as we appreciate your support and understanding.
Pastor Adebayo Oladeji, Special Assistant (Media& Communications) to the CAN President, his eminence, Rev Samson Olasupo A. Ayokunle, PhD.