The pan Yoruba socio-cultural organization, Afenifere has warned President Muhammadu Buhari to bury his alleged third term agenda, saying that the group will resist any move by him (Buhari) to rule Nigeria beyond 2023.
Afenifere frowned at the sinister moves by the President to amend the constitution to allow him contest for third declaring that the Yoruba nation would not tolerate any attempt to amend the 1999 constitution to favour Buhari.
Rising from its monthly meeting held at the residence of its leader Chief Reuben Fasoranti in Akure, Ondo State, the group declared its readiness to work with other ethnic groups in the country and rights activists to kill Buhari’s alleged third term agenda.
In a communique read at the end of the meeting by the Publicity Secretary of the group, Mr Yinka Odumakin, the group said the ongoing plan by some individuals as well as the body language of President Buhari are indicate that the president was interested in contesting for the third time.
Odumakin who alleged that President Buhari has been inconsistent over the third term plan, emphasized that the introduction of hate speech bill was an attempt to prevent any dissenting voice over the move.
The communique reads in part “the meeting took serious note of the rumoured plans to subvert the constitution of Nigeria to allow President Buhari to have a third term in office which started with an All Progressives Congress (APC) Senatorial Candidate in Bauchi State last year during bye-election declaring that he was coming to the
senate to work for a third term for Buhari.
“This was followed by the President who has a maximum of possible 8 years in office telling the country he was going to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years.To douse the tension the rumoured plot is generating the President made a denial a few days ago which we took with a pinch of salt because it is not the first time politicians would pursue what they are denying in Nigeria swearing with God.
“We have not forgotten that General Buhari told this country in 2011 that he would do only one term if he became President. He is now on a second term. He also promised Nigerians in 2015 that he would not have the office of the First Lady as President. He was mute when the wife issued an order that she must be addressed as First Lady and he has gone ahead to appoint six aides for the office.
“Meeting also observed that the reason given for the President for not thinking of a third term is the constitutional limit of two terms without talking about what he would do if that hindrance was removed.
“With the National Assembly in the pocket, the only hurdle left to change that provision would be two-third of Houses of Assembly and we have seen the President holding a meeting with the 36 Speakers. And shortly after this meeting, an APC member in Eboyi State has approached a Federal High Court to compel the National Assembly to remove the constitutional impediments against third term for President and Governors.
“We have seen this fire before. For this smoke not to be strange to us. Afenifere therefore, calls on Nigerians to be vigilant and thwart any attempt to take the country for a ride once again. We advise the President to use his last term in office to create legacies that will place him on the good pages of history, including setting Nigeria on a Federal path that will allow the constituent units of Nigeria to develop and maximize path instead of pursuing any ruinous agenda,” he added.
Also, the group described the Hate Speech Bill that is currently being debated at the Senate as a breach of the Nigerian constitution which clearly spells out freedom of speech.
Odumakin said “Meeting was miffed that in the midst of all the challenges facing Nigerians, the Senate would be concerned with a law to hang people for exercising their freedom of speech and airing views those in power may not like.
“The attempt to take away the freedom of expression earned through the sweat and blood of patriots is not only wicked but portrays us as a barbaric polity that operates by tenets of the jungle. Meeting called on Nigerians not to succumb to this totalitarian agenda.
“All countries that cherish freedom of speech are called upon to shut their borders against all senators who have spoken in favour of the bill to protect the right of man to air his view without prejudice to the laws of libel,” he added.
Meanwhile, Afenifere has berated the Nigeria Police over the failure to find the killers of late Mrs. Funke Olakunrin, daughter of Chief Fasoranti who was gruesomely murdered by suspected Fulani herdsmen along Benin/Ore express road.
According to the group, “the police have not found any clue about the perpetrators of the dastardly act and have not given any brief to the family.
“We are left with no option than to conclude at this stage that the death of Mrs. Olakunrin is a political assassination given the nonchalant attitude of the police. This widespread disregard for the sanctity of human life is worrisome as we saw even women dancing all over Kogi singing “ta ta ta ta” during the recent election with peoples’ lives wasted with impunity.
Odumakin said, “The dastardly act of burning to death of Mrs. Salome Abuh even after that declaration of a winner attests to the promotion of culture of violence. Meeting insisted that any country that fails to get the perpetrators of these murders and their types to face the law has its hands soaked in blood with its consequences.”