2015 polls may end up like Rivers/NGF crises –Tinubu

The National Leader of the Action Congress of Nigeria, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has said the Rivers State and the Nigeria Governors’ Forum crises are a presage of what will happen in the coming 2015 elections.
He, therefore, condemned the crises and the underlying forces behind them, saying such would only turn “an imperfect democracy into a perfect mess.”
The former Governor of Lagos State, in a statement on Sunday, accused President Goodluck Jonathan of masterminding the crisis in Rivers State.
Tinubu, who described the crisis as an “assault on the constitution,” explained that the crisis showed the failure of the Peoples Democratic Party to promote democracy in the country.
He said, “However, we all know the truth but most are afraid to speak.  There is no way the police and  small number of five lawmakers would act so brazenly, unless they receive instructions from their high places, attempted to impeach the Speaker.
Nigerians must ask: Is this way the President Jonathan intends to transform  Nigeria? By turning it from an imperfect democracy into a perfect mess?
“In some ways, this Rivers episode is not surprising. What happened in the Rivers House is one more reminder. PDP leaders hold democracy in contempt and will trample on it, if given the slightest opportunity. If they invert the relatively small numbers involved in the Nigerian Governors Forum and the Rivers State House, what they might do to general elections involving such a large population as ours is a hard piece of wood to chew.”
According to him, the crisis showed that security cannot be guaranteed in the coming elections.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Labour Congress has dissociated itself from the planned mass protest being organised by the Rivers State Government and some civil society organisations over the political crisis in the state.
The union said it would not participate in the protest, but did not give any reason for its decision.
Secretary-General of the congress, Chris Uyot, said the NLC had no plan to join the planned street protests, noting that the congress had not taken a definite position on the matter for now.
“From my findings at the Rivers State NLC council, there is no plan to join the street protest,” Uyot said on Sunday.
The Secretary-General, Trade Union Congress, Musa Lawal, also said the national leadership of the organisation had yet to take a position on the planned protest.
“The state council is free to participate in the protest; the national leadership is yet to take a position on it, but we are having a meeting tomorrow (Monday) and several issues will be discussed then,” he said over the telephone
Labour unions in the state were reported to have pledged to join the strike and possibly asked workers to go on indefinite strike.
The unions had insisted that apart from the Federal Government and the state government finding a solution to the impasse in the state House of Assembly, the police must also vacate the Obio/Akpor Local Government Secretariat.
In a statement  in Abuja on Sunday, the party said  the ACN call was an indication that the opposition party was indeed unserious, lacked direction and only sought to distabilise the polity.

Though Okeke said the PDP was not in support of the fracas witnessed in the Rivers State House of Assembly recently, but he added that brawls were “common features in parliaments across the world”, and wondered how the recent fray in the  Assembly could  translate into an impeachable offence on the part of the President.

via Punch
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