The African Action Congress, AAC, has demanded for an immediate and unconditional release of all political prisoners and #EndSARS protesters who are still unjustly languishing in detention centres across the country.

The political party on Monday described the current state of the nation as one in disarray, confusion, cannibalistic, and reeling in “incompetence of the highest order and backwardness.” 

The party in a statement by the National Publicity Secretary, Femi Adeyeye, said despite the 22 years of uninterrupted civil rule, the average Nigerian could not boast of any dividends of the much-touted democracy.

The party called on President Muhammadu Buhari to resign from office and let there be the creation of a new constitution for the country.

The statement reads, “There are no milder words to put the state of the nation, other than disarray, confusion, cannibalistic, reeking incompetence of the highest order and backwardness.

“Since flag independence in 1960, the everyday Nigerian whose interests we protect and aspirations we push, at the African Action Congress have been shut out of governance. Despite the 22 years of uninterrupted civil rule, the average Nigerian cannot boast of any dividends of the much-touted democracy.

“He has been left to cater to himself in all forms of human survival. Recent of all the darts thrown at him, is the sermon that he should find a way to defend himself against violent attacks by different types of terrorists the government has found comfortable names for- ‘bandits’, ‘killer herdsmen’ and ‘unknown gunmen’.

“To score the Buhari regime on its failure to fulfil any of its promises to the mass of our people would be a waste of productive time. We shall require another measurement scale for it. In 2015 and again in 2019, the APC campaigned on three pillars – security, anti-corruption, and economy; the Buhari regime has failed woefully on all three.”

The party stressed that Buhari regime is a god with clay feet which is incapable of protecting itself and its officials from the insecurity it has wrought on the nation.

“Insecurity has been ‘democratised’ and become so pervasive that there is no greater testimony of the large-scale insecurity in the land than the robbery of the Chief of Staff to the President within the Aso Villa presidential precincts and the recent invasion, killing of two officers and abduction of another officer inside the nation’s premier military training institution, the Nigerian Defence Academy.

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“The Buhari regime is a god with clay feet which is incapable of protecting itself and its officials from the insecurity it has wrought on the nation. If it is so incompetent in protecting its high-ranking officials, how can it protect the ordinary citizens? Can one give what he doesn’t have?

“It is so unfortunate that there has not been any progressive realization of the safe and conducive space for all. Rather, Nigeria has retrogressed under the Buhari regime and it is now the 3rd most terrorized country in the world.

“Placing the Nigerian space on a map today, the Buhari regime cannot boast of 10 percent where it has total control of and can assert sovereignty. We now have a horrible situation whereby terrorists now do humanitarian works like international NGOs, impose taxes on citizens and even declare a Governor for the people.” 

The statement explained that APC membership card is now effectively a “get-out-of-jail-card” for corrupt officials, saying that people standing trial for corruption, simply move into the party and their sins are forgiven.

“The Buhari regime came in 2015 huffing and puffing about fighting corruption and mouthing slogans such as ‘if we don’t kill corruption, corruption will kill Nigeria’. Rather than kill corruption, it has pampered the corrupt. The regime continues to deodorize its officials engaged in corruption and abuse of office.

“The APC membership card is now effectively a “get-out-of-jail-card” for corrupt officials. People standing trial for corruption, simply move into the party and their sins are forgiven as stated by its former chairman, Adams Oshiomhole.

“There is no better example of this than the current Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva who had all his property earlier seized via court order, some of which he deposed in an affidavit were not his, returned to him by the EFCC when he became the arrowhead of the party’s rigging machine in Bayelsa state. The regime has bungled every corruption case instituted and has failed to achieve a conviction in the rash of corruption trials it instituted on coming to power in 2015.”

AAC added that “there is no sector where the regime’s abysmal failure and incompetence is most glaring than the economy. To pose the question which the current Minister of Works posed to the other pair of the two left legs we call “major” political parties in Nigeria, the PDP during the 2015 elections “are your lives better today than they were 5 year ago?” the resounding answer is a loud NO.

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“The economy under Buhari has been characterised by widespread poverty, galloping inflation and unsustainable debt overhang. In 2020, an additional seven million Nigerians were plunged into what the World Bank described as multi-dimensional poverty by the Buhari regime bringing the number of Nigerians who wallow in multidimensional poverty to 98 million people or almost 50% of our total population. The multidimensional poverty index measures not just poverty by income, but also by access to health, education and living conditions such as sanitation, portable water, electricity, and housing.

“The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in its figures shows that 40% or 83 million Nigerians live in poverty in 2020. Even if we take the NBS figures, the number of Nigerians living in poverty exceeds the total populations of South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho, Mauritius and Eswatini (Swaziland) put together.

“The Buhari regime has made a song and dance about cash transfers to tackle poverty but what Nigerians need is not hand out to party cronies. What is required is an enabling environment and sound policy directives which allow Nigerians to unleash their creative abilities to create wealth. As the bible teaches, what we need are fishers not handing over fishes to us.”

The party added that the poverty in the country had been exacerbated by galloping inflation and chronic unemployment.

“It is the position of the African Action Congress that the democratic space in the last 22 years and most especially under the Buhari Regime has suffered major setbacks and the civic platforms that should breathe life to people’s participation in governance have continue to shrink.

“To mention a few is the deregistration of political parties that, according the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC), failed to meet the conditions to remain registered. Despite a previous court order to the contrary, the INEC continue in its undemocratic defiance to people’s participation.

“We maintain that this is inimical to what the likes of the Late Gani Fawehinmi fought for, i.e- the multi-party system. Nigerians will not succumb to the binary choice pressure from the two sides of an evil coin- APC and PDP. Political parties and the participation in them must be based on ideology and they must not be reduced to ‘’special purpose vehicles’’ for ‘’winning’’ elections.

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“Furthermore, as glaring as an albino in daylight are the abuse of power, gross attacks on human rights, viz a viz, rights to freedom of expression, of association, to hold thoughts, beliefs and conscience, flagrant disobedience to court orders, laced with irritating impunity.

“The AAC believes that the unity of Nigeria is negotiable and must be negotiated within the ambits of the law that affords equity, fairness and social justice. We are of the belief that you do not command peace into the air by some declaration in Abuja. Where there is no justice, peace is definitely going to be missing.

The party said it demanded the “immediate and unconditional release of all political prisoners- Omoyele Sowore, Nnamdi Kanu, Sunday Adeyemo (Sunday Igboho), and all #EndSARS protesters who are still unjustly languishing in detention centres across the country.

“We hope the regime will toe the path of civility, reason and logic to release these persons before the 20th of October, 2021 which marks the anniversary of the killing of peaceful protesters which is now known as the Lekki Massacre.”

“An immediate stop to the executive harassment of striking doctors; their demands should rather be met; immediate halt to borrowing, until a serious and independent audit of the earlier received loans is done.

“That President Muhammadu Buhari should resign with immediate effect as he has shown gross incompetence and cluelessness as it concerns piloting the affairs of the country; for the creation of an interim national government to midwife a brand new constitution that will usher in credible elections.

“Also, a call for a national conference of Nigerians drawn from all ethnic nationalities, religious and cultural orientations, gender classifications and age differentiation, towards establishing a progressive, socially just, economically equitable, and ecologically sustainable society, is imminent at this time. We shall continue to be part of such discussions and shall provide leadership at all times.

“We call on members of the public, home and abroad to join the African Action Congress only ideologically clear formidable opposition party in the country,” the party stated.

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Source: Release All Political Prisoners, Resign And Let’s Have New Constitution – African Action Congress Tells Buhari

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