Prominent Civil Rights Advocacy Group- HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (HURIWA) has challenged the government to talk less and do more in the area of securing the Federal Republic of Nigeria because if the government can sincerely conduct a plebiscite on the insecurity situation, it is certain that 99.9% of Nigerians will pass a vote of no confidence on the managers of the armed forces and police.
HURIWA spoke against the backdrops of the affirmation by the Federal Government that Nigeria is on the last phase of the war on terror and that it would order military actions to end the menace of banditry but the Rights group said this same statement from President Muhammadu Buhari which he made recently during his state visit to Maiduguri Borno State has been made over two dozen times including when President Muhammadu Buhari dismissed renewed attacks by Boko Haram terrorists about few years back as ‘the last kick of the dying horse’ even as the Rights group has tasked the President to tell Nigerians why the so-called ‘horse that engaged in the last kick before dying’ as he described Boko Haram terror attacks then, has refused to die since.
HURIWA recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari had on Thursday in Maiduguri, Borno State, urged troops of Operation Hadin Kai to remain steadfast as they go into the final phase of the campaign against insurgency and other forms of criminalities.
The President, who addressed the troops at the Airforce base in Maiduguri said the Government would continue to ensure that the widows and children of fallen heroes were well catered for, to help them fully realize their potentials just as stated that his government is on the last phase of defeating boko haram terrorists.
HURIWA quoted President Muhammadu Buhari ad also saying: “Our country, just like all the others in the Sahel region, is faced with several security challenges that are largely characterized by the violent activities of non-state actors. This has necessitated several interventions aimed at ensuring the security of persons and property across the numerous hot spots.
“Further improvements in the security situation in Operation Hadin Kai have led to a corresponding rise in the confidence of our people who are now returning in significant numbers to their homes.
“Further to the reorganizations in the military leadership, concerted efforts are being made to improve your equipment holding. I am aware that you have started receiving some of the platforms procured by our administration while others would be received in the weeks ahead,” the President added.
HURIWA however expressed disappointment that till date, President Muhammadu Buhari has failed to address the ruling of the Federal High Court Abuja division which categorically declared the armed Fulani terrorists in the North West as terrorists just as HURIWA said it was wrong for the President to still address those terrorists as armed bandits which is a violation of a binding injunction of the competent court of law which has the judicial powers of the Federation as specified in section 6 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“Three weeks after the Federal High Court ordered President Muhammadu Buhari through his Attorney General and Minister of Justice Alhaji Abubakar Malami to issue a Gazette to encompass the declaration made by the Court that the hitherto armed Fulani militia in the North West are to be treated as terrorists that they have always been, Mr. President even in his press statement on Thursday still insisted on addressing these terrorists as bandits.
HURIWA observed that this same Federal Government did not spend any time in declaring the unarmed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra as a terrorist group when the chief judge of the Federal High Court gave an Ex parte order to that effect controversially.
“What the Federal is doing Violates section 6 of the Constitution and it is disrespecting the competent Court of law.”
HURIWA cited section 6. (1) of the 1999 Constitution as directing that:”The judicial powers of the Federation shall be vested in the courts to which this section relates, being courts established for the Federation. (2) The judicial powers of a State shall be vested in the courts to which this section relates, being courts established, subject as provided by this Constitution, for a State. (3) The courts to which this section relates, established by this Constitution for the Federation and for the States, specified in subsection (5) (a) to (1) of this section, shall be the only superior courts of record in Nigeria; and save as otherwise prescribed by the National Assembly or by the House of Assembly of a State, each court shall have all the powers of a superior court of record. (4) Nothing in the foregoing provisions of this section shall be construed as precluding:- (a) the National Assembly or any House of Assembly from establishing courts, other than those to which this section relates, with subordinate jurisdiction to that of a High Court;
(b) the National Assembly or any House of Assembly, which does not require it, from abolishing any court which it has power to establish or which it has brought into being. (5) This section relates to:- (a) the Supreme Court of Nigeria; (b) the Court of Appeal; (c) the Federal High Court; (d) the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja; (e) a High Court of a State (f) the Sharia Court of Appeal of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja; (g) a Sharia Court of Appeal of a State; (h) the Customary Court of Appeal of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja; (i) a Customary Court of Appeal of a State; (j) such other courts as may be authorised by law to exercise jurisdiction on matters with respect to which the National Assembly may make laws; and (k) such other court as may be authorised by law to exercise jurisdiction at first instance or on appeal on matters with respect to which a House of Assembly may make laws. (6) The judicial powers vested in accordance with the foregoing provisions of this section – (a) shall extend, notwithstanding anything to the contrary in this constitution, to all inherent powers and sanctions of a court of law (b) shall extend, to all matters between persons, or between government or authority and to any persons in Nigeria, and to all actions and proceedings relating thereto, for the determination of any question as to the civil rights and obligations of that person; (c) shall not except as otherwise provided by this Constitution, extend to any issue or question as to whether any act of omission by any authority or person or as to whether any law or any judicial decision is in conformity with the Fundamental Objectives and Directive Principles of State Policy set out in Chapter II of this Constitution; (d) shall not, as from the date when this section comes into force, extend to any action or proceedings relating to any existing law made on or after 15th January, 1966 for determining any issue or question as to the competence of any authority or person to make any such law.”
HURIWA through the National Coordinator Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko disclosed that a lot of Nigerians are sick and tired of the monotonous promises made on regular basis by President Muhammadu Buhari to crush terrorists but lamented that even when the Federal High Court made a binding order to declare armed Fulani militia as terrorists, President Muhammadu Buhari is backsliding and still calls them armed bandits and these mass killers have on the average killed 100 Nigerians since that Court order was made and not enforced. “Why is President Muhammadu Buhari still treating Fulani terrorists with kid gloves? Is it because they are of sane Ethnic Fulani and Moslems like the President and all the current heads of internal security operations?”