Afenifere To Senate: Use 2014 Confab Reports As Template For Constitution Review Exercise Insists on restructuring

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Pan- Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, has enjoined the Senate to use reports of the 2014 National Conference and other profound positions on restructuring as a template as it set to review the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, saying doing this would serve as a basis of a meaningful new conditional order for the country.

Afenifere made this call following the conclusion of its National Caucus with met online on Monday and presided over by its leader, Chief Reuben Fasoranti, even as it pointedly declared that on restructuring it stands.

Other leaders at the parley included Chief Ayo Adebanjo, Chief Seinde Arogbofa, Chief Supo Sonibare, Oba Oladipo Olaitan, Dr David Atteh, Engr Simon Daramola and Hon. Korede Duyile.

Others are Senator Femi Okunroumu, Abagun Kole Omololu, Basorun Demola Folarin and Mogaji Gboyega Adejumo.

The group, in a statement made available to newsmen by its national publicity secretary, Mr Yinka Odumakin, said it gave the suggestion based on the latest invitation for memoranda by the Senate for Constitution Review.

This was just as the pan- Yoruba group observed that the constitution review exercise had become a ritual every four years without tangible progress, saying it would be sad if the country was being taken through another motion without movement in the midst of its constitutional disorder.

Afenifere, while endorsing the 2014 Confab document, argued that the mainly pro-federal reports had enough provisions to take the country out of its present crisis.

“Meeting reviewed the latest invitation for memoranda by the Senate for Constitution Review and observed that the exercise has become a ritual every four years without tangible progress. It would be sad if the country is being taken through another motion without movement in the midst of its constitutional disorder.

“We, therefore, recommend the reports of the 2014 National Conference and other profound positions on restructuring as a basis of a meaningful new conditional order for Nigeria. The mainly pro-federal reports have enough provisions to take Nigeria out of its present crisis,” the group said.

The meeting which also discussed the Water Resources Bill, the hike in prices of fuel and electricity as well as whether or nor the South-West security outfit, Operation Amotekun should be independent came out own position.

On Water Resources Bill, which was rejected by the 8th National Assembly but had now been revived surreptitiously by the House of Representatives, the group said it was a “dangerous agenda being pursued by the Executive in wanting to subvert the Land Use Act in the constitution that vests lands in the states in the governors.”

According to Afenifere, the Bill is so dangerous as it seeks to convert waterways to RUGA facilities for the Federal Government, while it also seeks to give 18kms after river banks to the government at the centre.

The group said this move was being made “when in a state like Lagos you hardly can go beyond a kilometre of any river before meeting residential buildings.”

It, therefore, demanded that the Bill be dropped immediately except there was an agenda to divide the country being pursued frenetically.

“We ask that the Bill be dropped immediately except there is an agenda to divide the country being pursued frenetically,” Afenifere demanded.

“Meeting considered the recent increases in the prices of petroleum products and electricity as the most insensitive policies against a people being ravaged by a national pandemic without adequate support from their government,” the group said.

Afenifere said it is wicked and inhumane to ask Nigerians to pay more for these facilities, calling on the citizens to use all constitutional and peaceful means to resist and reject the hikes.

Afenifere, while rejecting the move by the Federal Government to have the Amotekun security outfit under its control, threw its support for the South-West governors for saying that the outfit should be independent and not be muzzled under the failure of single police that necessitated it in the first place.

“Seeking to take Amotekun over negates the untruth by the Federal Government that it has commenced restructuring,” the Yoruba group said.

Meanwhile, the pan-Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, has congratulated Mr Akinwunmi Adesina for finally emerging overwhelmingly victorious in his bid for the second term as African Development Bank (AfDB) president.

Afenifere, while expressing joy that his integrity took him through the fire of challenge and was not burnt, prayed that his second term is more glorious than the first.

On the death of former US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Walter Carrington who passed away on 18th August 2020, described him as quintessential ambassador, recalling the critical role he played in support of the June 12 struggle in the country.

The group, in its meeting, said: “Carrington gave all in support of the struggle, declaring he “refused to keep silent in the face of tyranny and promoted the culture of liberty and democracy in our country.”

 


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