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Train Attack: El-Rufai Carpets Military, ACF Laments, DHQ Fails To Deploy Tucano In N’West

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Nasir El-Rufai on Wednesday, said he was frustrated and helpless, adding that the military knew the location of the bandits wreaking havoc in the state, but was refusing to bomb their hideouts.

It was gathered that five months after a Federal High Court designated bandits as terrorists, the Nigerian military had yet to deploy the Super Tucano aircraft in the North-West.

Recall that the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN), had on November 25, 2021, obtained a judgment designating all gunmen in the North-West as terrorists. This was said to be a condition by the United States government for the deployment of the aircraft outside of the North-East.

However, top sources confirmed that the Super Tucano had not yet been deployed in the North-West.

Addressing journalists on Wednesday when the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, visited the state to assess the situation following a terrorist attack on an Abuja-Kaduna train that left at least eight persons dead, El-Rufai said the terrorists’ hideouts should be bombed.

He said the location of the terrorists was public knowledge and even the Department of State Services usually monitors their telephone lines.

The governor stated, “We have enough intelligence for us to take action. The Air Force undertakes enough ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance); and the DSS has informants all over the place.

“We know what they (terrorists) are planning. We get the reports. The problem is for the agencies to take action. Don’t wait until they attack before you respond. The Army should go after their enclaves to wipe them out. Let the Air Force bomb them.

“Before, they were categorized as bandits and if you bombed them, you would have issues with human rights organizations and international criminal courts and so on. But, now that they have been declared terrorists by the court, they can be legally killed without any consequences from international human rights organizations.”

The governor insisted that the camps and phone numbers of the terrorists were known by the military agencies, stressing that Kaduna State was currently in a state of war.

“We know where their camps are, we know where they are; the SSS have their phone numbers, they listen to them, and they give me the report. We know what they are planning. We shouldn’t be waiting for them to attack; why can’t we go after them?” El-Rufai asked.

The governor said the bandit areas should be declared a warzone, adding that he was ready to allow a few innocent people to lose their lives in the process.

“We are in a state of war; this place should be declared a warzone. The Army, Air Force, and the police should go in there and kill them. Will there be innocent casualties? Yes! In every war situation, there are casualties,” he added.

The governor stated that train services should stop at 4 pm as nighttime had become too dangerous.

El-Rufai stated, “We have written to the Nigerian Railway Corporation twice to stop the evening service. The last train from Kaduna to Abuja should leave by 4 pm so that it will get to Abuja in daylight.

“If anything is to happen, the response time will be quick, maybe in 30 minutes. When something happens, the response time will be faster in the daytime. We were lucky the military response was just within an hour because it (attack) was dead in the night.”

The governor expressed his frustration about the situation, saying, “I’m angry, frustrated, and feel helpless. Let us establish military bases within Katari and Rijana (in Kaduna).”

On his part, Amaechi said the Nigerian Air Force would start escorting trains, adding that repair works on the bombed rail track would commence immediately as efforts were now on to install security sensors on the tracks.

He said, “I will speak with the President. He is already giving directives. I’m sure by the time we finish the repair of the rail tracks, we would have got approval for the security equipment and we would possibly have installed it.

“But even if it hasn’t been installed yet, we have spoken with the management of the Nigerian Air Force to escort the trains. They were previously escorting the trains, but recently the weather has been very bad and visibility dropped to below 500 meters, so they couldn’t fly.

“So, they’ve not been flying and this is why this (the attack) was successful. They have resumed flying and will escort the trains when we resume.”

The minister said the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), had approved that the ministry should employ people who would work on rail tracks for the next six to seven months until the security equipment was installed.

“We intend to employ villagers on the corridor so that they can report any suspicious movement to us and the security agencies,” he stated.

Amaechi said the Army had given maximum medical care to the patients, who were brought to the 44 Nigerian Army Reference Hospital, Kaduna.

He stated, “They treated the patients with bomb wounds and for the lady with gun wounds in her heart, they are bringing in a specialist, a cardiologist, to attend to her.

“They have just seven patients left; the rest have been discharged. The Federal Government is grateful to the military for the assistance. We will liaise with the hospital to see how much money we can contribute to the victim’s medical bills.”

On when the repairs of the bombed tracks would be fixed, Amaechi said, “We will commence work immediately and the military has promised us security as we work. It is less than 2km of rail tracks. We will complete the work as soon as possible.

“If the Ministry of Finance releases the funds, then we can know the number of those to employ. But we will involve the DSS in screening the people we will employ.”

On passengers and other persons on the ill-fated train, who had yet to be accounted for, the minister said, “We are still contact-tracing to establish those missing.”

The Chief Medical Director, 44 Nigerian Army Reference Hospital, Kaduna, Col Stephen Onochukwu, said the patients received by the hospital from the incident were all stable.

“We had 25 of them that were admitted. We discharged some of them that are stable but we are still following them up. Currently, we have seven of them left in the hospital,” he stated.

Attempts to get a reaction from the military proved abortive as the Director of Defence Information, Major General Ohwonigho Akpor, did not respond to calls or text messages.

Reps slam Amaechi, Sirika, service chiefs

Meanwhile, the House of Representatives investigation of terrorist attacks on the Kaduna International Airport and an Abuja-Kaduna rail line and train suffered a setback over the failure of the ministers and leaders of the security and intelligence community to show up at a meeting called for Wednesday.

The House had at the plenary on Tuesday resolved to invite the relevant ministers and those in charge of the nation’s security to an emergency meeting over the attacks.

Those to appear before the House were the National Security Adviser, Maj-Gen Babagana Monguno (retd.); Minister of Defence, Maj-Gen Bashir Magashi (retd.); Chief of Defence Staff, Gen Leo Irabor; Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen Farouk Yahaya; Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Isiaka Amao; Director-General, Department of State Services, Yusuf Bichi; and the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba.

Other is Amaechi; the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika; the Director-General, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, Musa Nuhu; Managing Director, Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria, Rabiu Yadudu; Managing Director, Nigerian Airspace Management Authority, Matthew Pwajok; and General Manager, Nigerian Railway Corporation, Fidget Okhiria.

However, all the ministers, security chiefs, and other officials sent representatives except the NAMA boss, who appeared in person, a development that miffed the lawmakers led by the Deputy Speaker, Ahmed Wase.

Earlier in his opening remarks, Wase noted that the meeting was called a sequel to the motion adopted in plenary on Tuesday, adding, “This became a matter of urgent importance for us to tackle because Nigerians no longer have respite in terms of means of movement, ease of communication and many losses of lives.”

While also noting that the lawmakers did not have any doubts about the capacity of the representatives, Wase stated, “But as a House, I am constrained as a Deputy Speaker to continue the meeting because the accounting officers that were supposed to be here, while you give them the necessary support, are not here.

“So, we cannot proceed. And I am saying with a heavy heart that no matter the assignment that our generals are handling, I believe the parliament deserves a listening ear. This is the House of the people. I am saddened; I am not happy. I am expressing my disappointment.”

Responding, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Aviation, Abel Enitan, said, “My minister is out of town on official assignment as approved by Mr. President before this incident.”

Wase, however, interjected, dismissing the excuse for Amaechi’s absence.

“Please, do not use the name of the President. If he is out of the country, he is out of the country. This institution is not under the Presidency. It is an institution of its own,” he said.

Also, the Chief of Operations, Nigerian Army, Maj-Gen Oti Akinjobi, said the service chiefs were in a meeting based on the directive of the President.

“The express nature of the assignment demanded that they hold a meeting immediately and they have been in session since last night up to this time,” Akinjobi added.

Not satisfied, the Deputy Speaker said while the lawmakers appreciated the directive given by Buhari to sort out the matter, he noted, “We also believe that their being here, even for 10 or 20 minutes, would not have reduced anything in terms of what should have been done.”

Wase also dismissed the excuse given by the Deputy Inspector-General of Police (Operations), Sanusi Lemu, for representing the IG.

The lawmakers consequently dismissed the representatives, asking those directly invited to appear in person today (Thursday).

Buhari orders speedy resumption, NRC workers kick

In a related development, the President has ordered that the bombed rail track be immediately repaired so that operations can resume even as he said security should also be improved along the affected corridor.

This is according to a post by the President’s Assistant, Bashir Ahmad.

The post titled, ‘FGN response to Monday terrorist attack’, outlined seven responses by the President.

“The Nigerian Railway Corporation management is to speedily repair the damaged lines and resume normal service without delay,” it read in part.

However, the Nigeria Union of Railway Workers said it would be demanding improved security on the route as part of the conditions for the workers to resume work.

The NRC had on Tuesday suspended the Abuja-Kaduna train operations following an attack by terrorists on Monday night.

However, speaking with one of our correspondents, the President-General, NURW, Innocent Ajiji, said the workers were worried about the attack on the train, adding that they would not be resuming except the security structure on that axis improved.

Ajijic said, “We are going to be demanding an improved security structure before going back to work. Our workers are concerned about the attack on the train. Everybody knows how bad the security is in the country.

“You’re aware that on Saturday the airport was attacked in Kaduna. Of course, you’re also aware that roads are not secure to pass again despite the number of security spots on them. So, we will equally demand that our rail lines are beefed up.

“Build a security post on every section of our rail lines so that we can have the presence of security just like we have checkpoints on the roads. If we have that in place on our rail lines, I am sure it’s going to reduce attacks.”

FEC honors victims with a minute of silence

At the Federal Executive Council, attendees observed a minute’s silence at the meeting presided over by Buhari to honor the victims of the Abuja-Kaduna train attack.

At the start of the meeting, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, called for a minute of silence for the eight departed souls, including a medical doctor, Ms. Chinelo Megafu; Secretary-General of the Trade Union Congress, Musa-Lawal Ozigi; and the Kwara State Chairman of the TUC, Akin Akinsola, among others.

Present at the meeting were Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, who was in Kaduna on Tuesday to visit survivors recovering at the 44 Army Reference Hospital; the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof Ibrahim Gambari; the National Security Adviser, Maj Gen, Babagana Monguno (retd.), and many ministers.

BIG STORY

President Tinubu Directs Full Implementation Of Oronsanye Report To Cut Size Of Government

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Nigeria’s President, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has directed the full implementation of the Oronsaye report.⁣

The Oronsaye report on public sector reforms, submitted in 2012, revealed that there are 541 statutory and non-statutory, federal government parastatals, commissions and agencies.⁣

Speaking with journalists at the end of the federal executive council (FEC) on Monday, Mohammed Idris, minister of information, said Tinubu has approved some reforms based on the Oronsaye report.

Idris said numerous agencies would be eliminated, others combined or restructured to cut governance costs.

The minister assured workers that the move would not initially affect jobs.

“In a very bold move today, this administration, under the leadership of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, consistent with his courage to take very far-reaching decisions in the interest of Nigeria, has taken a decision to implement the so-called Oronsaye report,” the minister said.

“Now, what that means that a number of agencies, commissions and some departments have actually been scrapped.

“Some have been modified, marked while others have been subsumed. Others, of course, have also been moved from some ministries to others where government feels they will operate better.”

On her part, Hadiza Bala-Usman, special adviser to the president on policy coordination, said Tinubu has constituted a committee to implement the report within 12 weeks.

The committee will be headed by George Akume, secretary to the government of the federation (SGF).

  • Background

In 2011, former President Goodluck Jonathan constituted the Stephen Oronsaye-led panel to identify inadequacies in the country’s civil service.

In 2012, the committee submitted an 800-page report and recommended the abolishment and merging of 102 government agencies and parastatals.

The committee on the white paper for the report submitted its report in 2014.

Since the submission of the report, the recommendations have not been implemented.

However, several committees and sub-committees were established to implement the report’s recommendations.

In November 2021, the federal government inaugurated two sub-committees chaired by former heads of service of the federation, Bukar Aji, Amal Pepple and Oladapo Afolabi, on the implementation of the report.

The two sub-committees were tasked with the implementation of a white paper on the restructuring of ministries, departments and agencies to reduce the cost of governance.

In July 2022, the federal government inaugurated a white paper committee to review ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) created since 2014.

 

Credit: The Cable

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Lagos Government In Partnership With Jospong To Revolutionize Waste Management — Tokunbo Wahab

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In an effort to transform waste management in Lagos State, the Ministry of Environment and Water Resources and the Jospong Group of Companies from Ghana have inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).

The state secretariat hosted the ceremony to officially launch a collaboration that would solve the problems associated with managing liquid and solid waste in the busy megacity.

During his inaugural speech, the Honourable Commissioner for Environment and Water Resources, Barrister Tokunbo Wahab, emphasised the significance of the collaboration. He underlined that the partnership with the Jospong Group represents a common goal for a healthier, cleaner, and more sustainable Lagos.

“The challenges of solid and liquid waste management in our rapidly growing megacity are well documented,” said Barrister Wahab. “It is our responsibility, as stewards of this city’s future, to address these challenges head-on.”

The partnership with the Jospong Group, renowned for its expertise in environmental and waste management services across Africa, marks a significant step towards enhancing the quality of life for Lagosians. Together, the entities will develop integrated solid and liquid waste management facilities tailored to meet the city’s current and future needs.

The collaboration will focus on leveraging technology, advocacy, enforcement, and the promotion of circular economy innovations such as recycling, composting, reuse, and waste-to-energy projects. These initiatives aim to reduce the environmental impact of waste while creating employment opportunities and fostering sustainable development in Lagos.

Barrister Wahab concluded his speech by calling for dedication, innovation, and collaboration in the journey ahead.

He urged stakeholders to embrace a paradigm shift in waste management, viewing waste not as a burden but as a valuable resource with the potential to contribute to the economic and environmental prosperity of Lagos.

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Presidency, Police Issue Fresh Warnings As 65 Groups Pull Out Of NLC Protest

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The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) was once again forewarned by the Presidency on Sunday not to go forward with its planned two-day statewide demonstration against the country’s rising cost of living.

The police issued a warning against interfering with business operations while the demonstration was going on.

The warnings were delivered by the police and Mr. Bayo Onanuga, the Special Advisor to the President on Information and Strategy, as 65 civil society organisations withdrew from the scheduled rally on Sunday, citing concerns about its potential hijack and the potential for worsening the already dire circumstances.

The NLC President, Joe Ajaero, had insisted in a statement on Sunday that the protest would be held on Tuesday and Wednesday as planned.

On February 16, the NLC announced the nationwide protest scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday over the alleged government’s failure to implement agreements reached between both parties on October 2, 2023, following the removal of the fuel subsidy.

The decision followed the conclusion of a 14-day ultimatum issued to the Federal Government to implement measures against the widespread hardship.

But addressing NLCS’s decision to proceed with the protest despite entreaties from various agencies and groups, Onanuga (in an interview with The Punch), described it as a “breach of the law” and an “illegal undertaking.’’

He said, “The attorney-general has written the NLC’s lawyer that the protest is illegal. So, they are breaching a court order if they want to go on with the protest.

“We are not aware of any plans to disrupt the protest, but what we can confirm is that they (NLC) are breaching an extant rule by a competent court that they should not go on protest. The protest itself is illegal. So, the NLC should bear that in mind.”

Warning the NLC on its course of action, the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Adegoke Fayoade, said the command would not condone any form of violence during the planned protest.

Adegoke in a statement cautioned the protesters against disrupting commercial activities, and vehicular movements in the state, adding that anyone found violating the rights of others during the rally would face legal repercussions.

The statement read, “The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, CP Adegoke Fayoade, has assured Lagosians that the command has put necessary measures in place to ensure the safety of lives and property, the free flow of traffic, and a peaceful environment for carrying out their respective lawful duties.

He advised protesters against, “an action capable of grounding commercial activities and obstructing the free flow of traffic.

“The command will live up to its mandate of ensuring that no person or group of persons is allowed to infringe on the fundamental human rights of others, especially the rights to freedom of movement and the right to dignity of human persons.

“CP Adegoke, therefore, warns all intending protesters that anyone found infringing on the rights of other Nigerians will be dealt with in accordance with the law.’’

  • Ekiti Police

Similarly, the Police Commissioner in Ekiti State, Adeniran Akinwale, said the force would not allow a breakdown of the rule of law in the state during the protest.

Akinwale, who harped on the need for peace in Ekiti State and Nigeria, said, “I have a role to play, my own is to ensure that there is peace and tranquillity in Ekiti State. In any situation that comes, we monitor and if there is anything, we respond accordingly. But our own job is to monitor to ensure that there is no problem.

“We appeal to people not to truncate the peace Ekiti people are witnessing because the present economic situation is not palatable, however, it is not peculiar to Nigeria or Ekiti alone, so we will just continue to pray for improvement in the economic situation in Nigeria.’’

The Delta State Police Command disclosed its plan to deploy personnel to maintain law and order during the protest.

Revealing this in an interview with one of our correspondents on Sunday, the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Bright Edafe, said, “We will do our normal deployment of officers to maintain law and order. The command will issue a statement tomorrow to that effect.”

On its part, the Kaduna State police command asked the NLC to shelve the protest in the state.

The Command’s Public Relations Officer, Mansir Hassan, hinged his plea on the precarious situation in the state.

He, however, noted that should the NLC t protest, the command would provide the necessary cover for them, warning the protesters to be law-abiding.

Hassan said, “The command is appealing that the protest should not even hold. They should understand the nature of Kaduna and that it is not everywhere they should come and protest.

“We have enjoyed relative peace in the state. We will provide adequate security for them and we are appealing to be law abiding. Although we have had a cordial relationship with the NLC for a long but if they insist, we will give them the necessary cover.

“They should know that where their rights stop, that is where other people’s rights start. In fact, we are evening appealing that the protest should not hold. We are calling on the hoodlums to desist from infiltrating into the NLC protest.”

Concerned by the possible hijacking of the rally, 65 civil society groups under the aegis of Coalition of Civil Society Organisations Forum, said it would no longer participate in the demonstration.

The group said this a few days after the Department of State Services appealed to the labour to shelve the protest on the grounds it could be hijacked by fifth columnist to cause chaos in the country.

The group in a joint statement by its Coordinator, Buba Mohammed and Secretary, George Phillips, on Sunday, also said it was making “frantic efforts” to meet with the government and amicably resolve the issues at stake.

“Any attempt to embark on a nationwide strike during these critical period of hunger and harsh economy could be hijacked by hoodlums and criminal elements, who have been waiting for the slightest opportunity to unleash terror; disrupt public peace, loot business premises and markets,’’ it said.

  • NLC Allegation

Reacting to the development, the NLC President, Ajaero, claimed that the forum was “one of the emergency groups put together, funded, promoted and remote-controlled by the government to cause violence against our members for electing to peacefully protest against the hunger in the land.”

The president insisted that the protest would hold in line with the decision of the NLC national executive council, adding that “the pangs of hunger cannot be vowed by bullets or tear gas.”

In a statement on Sunday, the labour leader alleged a plot to attack the protest, warning that there would be a total shutdown if attacks or violence were unleashed on peaceful protesters.

He admonished the government to find solutions to the challenges plaguing the country.

He noted, “In light of this, we advise the state to put on its thinking cap and find solutions to the pains it continues to cause the people instead of further dehumanising them.”

“However, if it is irrevocably set on the path of violence against us and other peace-loving Nigerians, it will be making a costly mistake because if we are attacked there will be a total shutdown via withdrawal of services by workers. Let no one be deceived, we and other deprived Nigerians cannot easily be intimidated.’’

The congress told the African Union and the United Nations that the right of the people to ‘’peacefully protest and demand for freedom from economic slavery and hardship is being threatened by the Nigerian state.”

Speaking on Ajaero’s allegation, the Federal Government said it had no intention to disrupt the protest.

The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Idris Mohammed, said this in an interview with one of our correspondents on Sunday night.

The Attorney-General and Minister of Justice Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, had earlier reminded the unionists that there was an existing court injunction restraining them from embarking on any protest or rally.

But Idris assured that the government would not use force or recruit hoodlums to attack the protesters just as he faulted the planned rally, describing it as unpatriotic.

He said, “Let me first say the Federal Government has no intention whatsoever to use force against anybody. What we are saying is that they must maintain law and order.

‘’The question is why will the NLC want to go on protest at this crucial time when the nation is trying to find a solution to economic challenges that we have?

“If Labour is patriotic enough, this is not the time for them to go on strike. Their decision to embark on this needless strike now is quite unpatriotic.

“The Federal Government is not interested in using force against labour or anybody at that. We are only appealing to them to see reason and underscore the importance of dialogue all the time.

“After all, most of the agreements we have with labour have been implemented. So what is the point? I can’t see any reason for them to go on strike at this moment. What do they intend to achieve with it? What we should be looking for is the solution to our challenges.’’

Shedding light on what the government has done so far post-subsidy regime, the minister stated, “Look at the gains we have made from the removal of fuel subsidy. More money is being pumped into the economy. There is a committee on wage that has also been agreed upon.’’

  • FG Faults Labour

Continuing, the minister explained that the Federal Government was doing everything possible to ease the economic crunch and arrest the free fall of the naira.

He also confirmed that the government met with state governors and private sector players, including business mogul, Aliko Dangote; Group Chief Executive Officer at Oando Plc, Wale Tinubu; Chairman of Heirs Holding and Transcorp Plc, Tony Elumelu and Chairman of BUA Group, Abdulsamad Rabiu at a crucial stakeholders’ meeting at the State House in Abuja on Sunday evening.

“The Federal Government today met with all the state governors and organised private sectors with Aliko Dangote, BUA, Elumelu and others. That is to tell you that this administration is doing everything humanly possible to resolve the current challenges,” he stated.

Also speaking on the alleged plot to disrupt the protest, the spokesperson for the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Olajide Oshundun, said plots to attack protesters should not be linked to government agencies, adding that it is the fundamental right of every Nigerian to protest.

Oshundun stated, “Government do not disrupt protests because it is the fundamental human right of any individual or groups to organise protests.

“I have never heard of my ministry or any government agencies being employed to frustrate protests.

“On the part of the ministry, we have appealed to Labour to shelve the protests because what they centred their protests on is that the ministry is not keeping to the 15-point agreement reached on October 2 2023 but within the last week, the Minister of Labour and Employment in a release addressed each of the 15 points agreements. There is none of the 15-point agreement that the government has not done one thing or the other.

“However, we will keep appealing to the labour union but if they still want to go with the protests, the ministry should be left out of the attacks on protesters. We are civilised and we know the rules.”

Despite the pleas from the Federal Government, the Lagos State NLC Chairman, Agnes Sessi, has insisted that there is no going back on the nationwide protest.

Reacting to the warning from the AGF that the protest could be in contempt of court, Sessi said it was within the fundamental human rights of its members to hold a peaceful protest.

In a letter dated February 23 and addressed to the counsel for the labour unions, Femi Falana, the AGF said, “You may wish to note that the foregoing issues or objectives are at the core of the pending case before the National Industrial Court.

“Upon the submission of grievances to the court, parties in the suit cannot resort to public protests over the same issues, as such conduct amounts to gross contempt and an affront to the institution of our courts of law.

“Therefore, the proposed nationwide protest action in all its ramifications is in clear violation of the pending interim injunctive order granted in suit no. NICN/ABJ/158/2023 Federal Government of Nigeria & Anor v. Nigeria Labour Congress & Anor on June 5, 2023, restraining both NLC and TUC from embarking on any industrial action or strike of any nature.”

But Sessi insisted that the AGF or any other government officials or agencies could not truncate the union’s planned peaceful protest.

Sessi stated, “The AGF cannot say the court has ruled against the protest. There is a law. And this law supports our fundamental human rights. This law allows for peaceful protest. You can stage a peaceful protest anywhere around the world.

“It is our right; nobody can tell us not to assemble. It is going to be a peaceful protest against the bad policies of the government. They cannot tell us not to come out. We will come out.

“We will be civil in our protest, and we will show our displeasure about the hardship through our convergence. We have the backing of those who know the law. Peaceful protest is allowed all over the world.”

Also commenting on the AGF’s warning, the Kano State NLC Chairman, Abdullahi Jungle, said, “We only take directives from our national body and not any other organizations.’’

“I can assure you that by Tuesday, we are fully set for the protest and you can also come to witness the process,” he added.

Meanwhile, the National Leader of the pan-Yoruba socio-political organization, Afenifere, Pa Reuben Fasoranti has appealed to Nigerians to be patient with the administration of President Bola Tinubu.

Fasoranti acknowledged that the economic measures being implemented by the government were difficult, it was aimed at restoring economic prosperity and stability of the country.

This was contained in a statement issued by the Afenifere leader on Sunday titled, ‘A special appeal to Yoruba/ Nigerians not to participate in any protest or rallies as we go through the painful surgical solution to rescue our country from avoidable death and to restore it to the path of glory.’

According to the nonagenarian, the government’s commitment to implementing the economic measures was “a testament to its dedication to addressing the root causes of our economic challenges, inherited from the ills of the previous years.”

The Afenifere leader noted that the removal of fuel subsidy and the floating of the naira was not undertaken lightly, ‘’because great damage had been done to the country’s prosperity through the nefarious activities of the agents of darkness within the oil and financial sectors.”

He said, “These measures by the Federal Government, though painful in the short term, are designed to create a more sustainable economic environment that will benefit us all in the long run. It requires collective understanding and resilience from every citizen as we navigate through these challenging times.’’

While imploring the people to trust in the government’s commitment to the welfare of the nation, Fasoranti said there was a need for the people to engage in constructive dialogue and contribute positively to the ongoing economic reforms.

As the leader of Afenifere, we are actively engaging with the government at different levels to address the concerns of our people. Let us remain steadfast, patient, and united in the face of these challenges, confident that our collective resilience will pave the way for a more prosperous future,” he submitted.

 

Credit: The Punch

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