• Advocates huge role for traditional rulers in bringing peace to communities
  • Nnamdi Kanu should defend himself in court, I can’t release him 
  • Gives condition for signing Electoral Act Amendment Bill

 

Abiodun OBA

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has maintained that state police is not the solution for the nation.

The President made the remark in an interview with Channels Television.

Nigeria’s current ineffective policing system is controlled by the Federal Government.

In a teaser of the interview, published by Channels TV, the President used the abuse of powers by Governors to justify his argument against state police.

“State police is not an option,” he said. “Find out the relationship between local government and the Governors.

“Are the third tier of government getting what they are supposed to get constitutionally? Are they getting it? Let the people in local government tell you the truth, the fight between local governments and the Governor.”

Buhari said traditional rulers must play a huge role in bringing peace to communities.

He also advocated for more dialogue in solving the farmer-herder clashes recorded across the country.

“The role of traditional rulers must not be undermined, because in their areas they know who is who, even by families, not to even talk of individuals,” he said.

“So, we have to revert to that system for us to have effective security in the localities.

“For example, there were two Governors that came to see me about problems – Oyo state and one other state – because the herders were in their forests but the animals were going into the neighbouring farms, and eating the crops; I said, as far as I know, the farmers and herders have been co-existing in Nigeria for generations. Let them go and ask the local leadership what has gone wrong, why the break in communication between the local leadership and the herders.”

Also during the interview monitored by securityreporters.com, President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), says the leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, should defend himself in court for peddling false information about his regime while he was overseas.

Before now, some respected Igbo elders led by Minister of Aviation in the First Republic, Chief Mbazulike Amaechi, visited the President in Aso Rock and requested the unconditional release of the detained secessionist leader.

During the visit on November 19, 2021, Buhari had told them he would not want to interfere in the running of the judiciary but said he would consider their demand though “a heavy one.”

But speaking on Wednesday night during the television interview, the President said, “There is one institution that I wouldn’t interfere with, that is judiciary, Kanu’s case is with the judiciary but what I wonder is when Kanu was safely in Europe, abusing this administration and mentioning too many things, I thought he wants to come and defend himself on the accusations.

“So, we are giving him an opportunity to defend himself in our system, not to be abusing us from Europe as if he was not a Nigerian. Let him come here with us and then criticise us here. Nigerians know that I don’t interfere with the judiciary, let him be listened to. But those who are saying that he should be released, no, we cannot release him.”

When asked about the possibility for political solution, Buhari said, “There is a possibility of political solution. If people behave themselves, all well and good but you can’t go to a foreign country and keep on sending incorrect economic and security problems against our country and thinking that you would not account for what you have been doing. Let him account for what he has been doing.”

Kanu, 54 from Abia State was first arrested in 2017 for demanding the secession of the South-East zone from the Nigerian State.

However, he jumped bail in June 2018 before leaving for the United Kingdom, though he said that he fled because his life was no longer safe in Nigeria.

After about three years abroad, Malami at a press briefing in Abuja on June 29, 2021, announced that the IPOB leader was re-arrested in a foreign country and extradited to Nigeria though Kanu’s lawyers said he was re-arrested in Kenya and whisked to Nigeria.

Upon his re-arrest in June 2021, Kanu was re-arraigned before Justice Binta Nyako for terrorism-related charges brought against him by the AGF office. Kanu has since been remanded in the custody of the Department of State Services in Abuja while his trial is to continue on January 18, 2022.

President Muhammadu Buhari said on Wednesday that he will sign On the 2021 Electoral Act Amendment Bill, President Muhammadu Buhari said once the members of the National Assembly removed the provision mandating all political parties to use direct primary to elect candidates for elections he will give his ASSENT.

The President had refused to sign the Electoral Act Amendment bill over the inclusion of direct primary as the only mode of electing candidates for elections

The President had in a letter informing the National Assembly of his rejection of the Bill complained that the provision was against the constitutions of the parties that indicate that primaries should be conducted either directly or indirectly.

The President also said direct primary will involve high cost, lead to marginalisation of small parties, susceptible to manipulation among other measures.

The President said the National Assembly must include provisions for use of direct, indirect and consensus mode of selection of the candidates in the Bill for him to sign it into law.

“I will sign. All I want is that there should be options, you cannot dictate to the political parties and say you are practicing democracy,” Buhari told his interviewers

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