The following is our petition to the National Assembly, the Attorney General and the Presidency. Please read and join us as signatories to the letter. Please forward your response to [email][email protected].
It's becoming increasing clear to us now that the Nigerian military pulled a fast one on us. They are still in power. When Abiola, a civilian won, they refused to hand over to him. They annuled his victory and clung on to power. The insincerity of their various, elongated transition programs were apparent. Mounting pressure, both at home and abroad, coupled with the drying up of international aids forced them to change their "open" dictatorship approach. They went undercover in civilian clothing, and devised a plan to succeed themselves in a way that would be less obvious. Their plan worked and we have an ex-army general as president today. Other Generals are gearing up to succeed him. The more we allow them to continue to succeed themselves, the more they will be able to cover their tracks for past misdeeds. And the irony of it all is that they are using state funds which they embezzled while in office, to continue their dominance of Nigeria's political life. And they continue to bring other people of disreputable character aboard.
It is time for us to practice true democracy in Nigeria. We have had enough of military leadership.It is time to give civilians a chance. If we have had uninterrupted democratic system since independence, Nigeria may have indeed gone along way toward achieving the greater glory once dreamed about on the onset of our independence. In order to make meaningful progress, we also need to combat the culture of corruption that has plagued our nation. To do this we need to vigorously enforce our laws. Law breakers must be prosecuted. Our leaders who stole before must be brought to account for their crimes. This is what other countries like Japan , South Korea and Indonesia did in order to lay a solid foundation that will engender progress and development. Offenders must be punished to encourage respect for the law. We must stop parading as heros, those ex-leaders who looted the Nigerian treasury. It is time for true civilian government in Nigeria. A government that will be accountable and respo
nsible to all Nigerians. To start with, we need a South African type "Truth Commission", that will identify and set a guideline for immediate action that will help in achieving the following proposal. In
the absence of this, we present before the following institutions and officers of the Democratic Republic Of Nigeria the petition below:
The following is our petition to the National Assembly, the Attorney General and the Presidency. Please read and join us as signatories to the letter. Please forward your response to [email][email protected] .PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR NAME, TITLE (Mr. or Mrs, etc) and your location (city and country). Names of all in support would then be added to this petition and would be forwarded to the proper authorities in Nigeria. We are also working on getting the support of civil right activists in Nigeria.
APPEAL TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF NIGERIA AND TO ALL STATE ATTORNEY GENERALS
We, the undersigned hereby appeal to the Attorney General of Nigeria and all State Attorney Generals to begin enforcing the law of the country. We ask that they investigate and prosecute:
1. Those who previously violated the constitution by overthrowing democratically elected civilian governments and for the untold crimes they have committed.
2. Ex-military rulers and past/current senior government officials who should be made to account for their unexplained wealth.
3. Senseless killings of Nigerians by police, the army and vigilante groups. All cases of police and army brutality and abuse of power must be investigated, and an immediate effort should be made to stop the arrests and summary killings of people by vigilante groups.
4. Any violation of the Nigerian constitution and especially those that undermine the fundamental human rights of the average Nigerian citizen, without any exception given to ethnic, gender, religion or status.
APPEAL TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT:
1. Show transparent sincerity in enforcing the law.
2. Increase funding for law enforcement agencies/departments, especially the Police and all the attorney generals both at the state and federal levels.
3. Stop appointing people whose integrity have been tainted by virtue of their participation in past corrupt and oppressive governments.
4. Hands off the creation and the growth of Nigerians In Diaspora Organization (NIDO) so as to allow the organization to function with independence.
APPEAL TO PARTIES CONTESTING ELECTIONS:
1. Do not nominate ex-military dictators as your presidential or gubernatorial candidates.
APPEAL TO THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY
PROPOSED LAWS, RESOLUTIONS AND CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENTS:
1. A resolution that all those involved in the overthrow of elected civilian governments be prosecuted by the Attorney General of the nation.
2. A resolution that past government rulers and senior government officials be investigated for corruption by the attorney general (not by a specially set up body).
3. Increase funding for law enforcement agencies/departments, especially
the police and all the attorney generals both at the state and federal levels.
4. A resolution that parties do not field ex-military dictators as their candidates, especially at the presidential and gubernatorial levels.
5. A resolution asking President Obasanjo to stop appointing people whose integrity have been tainted by virtue of their participation in past corrupt and oppressive governments, especially those of Abacha and Babangida.
6. Pass laws to reform the electoral system and campaign funding. Limit the contributions that individuals can contribute to a candidate’s campaign fund and to the candidate’s party. To force candidates to address the issues affecting voters, and to discourage money politics, pass law limiting the amount individuals can use from their own private wealth to fund their campaign. This measure would also discourage those who are using looted funds to gain undue advantage to control the political process.
7. Pass a law banning those who previously participated in overthrowing constitutionally elected civilian government from contesting presidential, gubernatorial and federal and state legislative positions (at the time of the coup, they knew that that coup was illegal under the constitution).
8. Pass a law banning those who overthrow elected governments in the future and all senior officials who take appointments under such illegal government from all government positions in the future. Pass law to disbar Attorney Generals and Lawyers who take senior appointments from such government.
9. Pass a law assessing criminal and monetary penalty against those who overthrow democratically elected civilian governments in the future.
10. Pass laws removing ex-military dictators and non elected heads of states from the Council of States and the privilege of receiving pensions.
11. Pass a law requiring candidates to list their assets, when and how acquired, source of fund and wealth, etc. Require the police and electoral commission to verify statements given and to disqualify and prosecute those who lie.
12. Pass laws to reform the judiciary and to promote impartial enforcement
of the law. To ensure their independence, consider changing the manner of
appointment and removal of judges and the attorney generals.
We make these suggestions because we believe that it is time for our nation to make a firm and unequivocal commitment to the rule of law. We cannot make significant progress in developing our nation in an atmosphere of lawlessness. We cannot continue to pay lip service to the rule of law.
We must put an end to the 419 culture, not by rhetorics but with sincere efforts. We must not continue to treat as heroes, those who violated the constitution, the supreme law of the land by overthrowing constitutionally elected civilian government. We must address the illegal wealth that many past and present leaders come into. We must make a clean break from the past, from corrupt and insincere leadership, from the wrong approach to politics and governance. To do nothing is to condone lawlessness and continue to reward those who previously have abused the system, through the abuse of their offices, embezzlement and coup d'etat. Public posts are positions of trust and must be earned. We must stop the effect of dirty money on Nigerian politics. We must take significant measures to seriously discourage military coups and embezzlement of public funds. We must resolve to be a nation of law and order, not just by words, but by actions and sincere efforts.
We ask all conscientious Nigerians to join us in signing this petition. Your support makes a difference. Please join and support this cause by signing this petition !!!. To join, simply reply to this email by forwarding your reply to, mailto:[email protected] and INCLUDE YOUR NAME AND LOCATION. After all signatures are collected, a final copy would be posted on the egroups and at other relevant Internet sites. Your suggestions and comments are welcomed. After forwarding your response to us, please help us circulate this petition further to others.
Thank you for your time and cooperation.
Ken Somoye, NJ, USA
Bamidele A. Ojo, NJ, USA
Pete Sofiyea, IL, USA
Andrew Edvebie, MI, USA
Paul Olatoye, MD, USA
Richard Olumakin, PA, USA
Contact: [email][email protected]>