COUP WARNINGS: Buhari, APC Receive Bashing
The federal government in Nigeria has been criticized for the continuous warnings it keeps dishing out about a coup plot against President Muhammadu Buhari.
A statement signed by the special adviser on media and publicity to the president, Femi Adesina, said “The Department of State Services, on Sunday, alerted on sinister moves by misguided elements to wreak havoc on the government, sovereignty and corporate existence of the country.
“Championed by some disgruntled religious and past political leaders, the intention is to eventually throw the country into a tailspin, which would compel a forceful and undemocratic change of leadership.
“Further unimpeachable evidence shows that these disruptive elements are now recruiting the leadership of some ethnic groups and politicians round the country, with the intention of convening some sort of conference, where a vote of no confidence would be passed on the President, thus throwing the land into further turmoil.”
Veteran journalist, Bala Ibrahim, reacted to Adesina in a published article on Wednesday, saying: “This is not the first, second or third of such warning coming from the government. Yet there has never been any arrest, or specific mention of name or names of the accused.
“The obligation of government on the preservation of power goes beyond issuing warnings about plans to usurp such powers. There should be a course of action, legal or moral, that would punish or deter those intentionally engaged in undermining national security, by levying war against the government, or giving aid or comfort to the enemies. This is because it is pure treason, which is the highest of all crimes to a country.”
Bala hinted that the DSS appears to be less intelligence-oriented in this regard, saying “Although everyone knows that since the change of guards at the DSS, when Bichi replaced Daura, intelligence gathering has gone unintelligent, but these warnings that are becoming synonymous with the barking of a toothless dog, are particularly painful when a country is under constant attacks by bandits, insurgents, separatists etc, and the government keeps saying it would crush them, while the atrocities are continuing with undiminishing intensity.”
He said “If the government has such intelligence, what stops it from arresting the culprits immediately, and charging them to court? Should it just fold its arms and continue to engage in rhetoric?
“Unless the government is the architect of these shenanigans, it must act, and be seen to be acting, by naming and shaming the malefactors.”
In a similar vein, the secretary of the Northern Elders Forum, Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, told The PUNCH on Wednesday that “This is a very serious statement to make. We are talking of treason here. The Presidency has a duty to arrest and expose who it suspects are involved in this, instead of releasing statements that merely compound our very high levels of concern.
“This is not just about President Buhari. It is about our rights to choose who leads us. It is, to say the least, irresponsible to release these kinds of statements instead of taking steps to bring subversives and treason to book.”
Also, opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said in a statement by its spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan, that the presidency was only issuing “frivolous allegations against Nigerians” because the Buhari-led government has been a failure.
PDP equally said President Buhari’s history of scuttling of democratically elected governments has been haunting him.
“It is however imperative to state that the Buhari Presidency and the All Progressives Congress (APC) are being haunted by their own shadows as Nigerians know the persons as well as the political party with the history and penchant to scuttle democratically elected government.
“Perhaps, the Presidency has forgotten that in 1983, Brigadier Muhammadu Buhari, as he was then known, led a military coup to truncate a democratically elected government thereby causing our nation a huge drawback on democratic governance.
“Also, in 2015, the APC, which was hurriedly formulated, made itself available as a vehicle of brigandage to disrupt our political process by beguiling Nigerians and taking power through violence, propaganda and falsehood.
“Even in 2019, Nigerians will be quick to remember how the APC imported bandits, vandals and thugs from neighboring countries, as political mercenaries, to unleash violence, disrupt our voting processes and muscle itself to power.
“The PDP therefore counsels the Buhari Presidency and the APC to look inwards as all fingers toward any possible plots to upturn our democracy point to them.
“Our party believes that the statement by the Buhari Presidency is an attempt by the APC to heighten political tension in our country ahead of the 2023 election, having realized that they cannot face the people at the polls,” the statement read.
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