Civil Society Organisations; Citizens Watch Advocacy Initiative (CWAI) and Coalition of Civil Societies and Media Executives for Good Governance in Nigeria (COCMEGG) have jointly passed a vote of confidence on President Muhammadu Buhari.
The president of the Coalition of Civil Societies and Media Executives for Good Governance in Nigeria (COCMEGG), Omoba Kenneth Aigbegbele disclosed this during the State-of-the-nation world press Conference held on Monday in Abuja.
Aigbegbele urged Nigerians to disregard the recent press statement issued by a self-acclaimed Coalition of 70 CSOs across Nigeria which purportedly pass a Vote of No Confidence on President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.
He stated that COCMEGG is an umbrella body of over 350 CSOs, NGOs, human rights activists, Bloggers, Media Executives, who have, over the years, advocated for transparency, accountability and good governance regime in the country, knowing full well that without these templates, there is nowhere democracy can thrive and democracy dividends can percolate to the grassroots in Nigeria
According to him, “As champions and propagators of good governance and accountability in Nigeria, having seen and read the said press statement, we have come to the conclusion that it is the handiwork of fifth columnists, rabble-rousers, agent provocateurs, divisive tendencies from enemies of Nigeria and their foreign collaborators aimed at bringing down the present government at all cost, not minding whose ox is gored.
“After a critical evaluation and analysis of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari in all ramifications, we are passing a Vote of Confidence on the present administration for being alive to the primary responsibility of safeguarding lives and property across the nation. Most Nigerian youths are now gainfully employed across the length and breadth through the Agricultural Value Chain; many, especially women, have been empowered through the N-Power Programme, Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) and a whole lot of successful social safety nets and initiatives which have lifted and propelled millions of Nigerians from poverty to prosperity,” he said.
He insisted that the security situation across Sub-Sahara Africa is a fallout of the disintegration of Libyan State with the antecedent proliferation of small arms across the sub-region, noting that Africans and indeed, Nigerians, are abreast of the concerted efforts by the present administration to curtail the excesses of these criminal elements; Boko Haram, ISWAP insurgents, banditry, kidnapping among others
He stated further that Buhari’s government inherited a ramshackle military with obsolete equipment, low morale, but today’s Armed Forces can boast of state-of-the-art equipment, armoury and one of the best standing forces in Africa.
He noted that the current regime has sacrificed both men and equipment to keep Nigeria safe, secured and united, in spite of all these subterranean forces masquerading as foreign NGOs with local collaborators, aiding, abetting and inciting divisiveness, hate speech and ethnic bias amongst the populace, so as to give the dog a bad name in order to hand it.
“We want to let Nigerians know that security is on the concurrent list of the Nigerian Constitution, and, as such, everyone’s business and should not be left to the government alone. Therefore, these CSOs that are supposed to be partners in progress with the government, have remained passive and aloof to these security challenges and allowing themselves to be used as pawns against the hard-working administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“ In view of the foregoing, we call on all well-meaning Nigerians and the international community, to jettison, disregard these innuendoes, orchestrated by vile elements who have sworn for their self-inordinate ambition and mesh of porridge.
“These co-travellers of CSOs, NGOs and groups masquerading themselves as the conscience of the Nation has been wining and dining with the same present administration since they took over the mantle of leadership in 2015. Now, our findings have revealed that, instead of offering positive and constructive advice, the group prefers rather go cap-in-hand, soliciting and arm-twisting the present administration to harkens to their outrageous demands, failure to which, they now cajole and blackmail the present administration, in order to achieve their selfish agenda.
“We also have it on good authority that these groups have been sponsored to stampede the government of President Buhari, whose only perceived crime is that the government has refused to play along with their storyline.
“At this juncture, we are urging the government to remain steadfast, focused, and not be distracted from concentrating on its avowed agenda to safeguard lives and property in Nigeria and the delivery of good democracy dividends to the grassroots,” he said.
The CSOs also called on the international community, friends of Nigeria, politicians and well-meaning Nigerians to join hands with the government in its endeavour to protect lives and property in Nigeria, stressing that, despite the CSOs’ insinuations, Nigeria is safe for investments as it is a choice destination and an investment haven.
Core Reporters recalled that the Department of State Services (DSS) has consistently warned Nigerians for the past three months that, there are orchestrated plans and motives by political jobbers, non-state actors and boot-lickers who are fanning the embers of disunity and insecurity by increasing and constantly gathering and disseminating fake news to Nigerians through social media and recycling old videos and clips so as to look as fresh to fan ethnic clashes and banditry.
Consequently, the CSOs have called on the media and Nigerians, not to be gullible from the antics of these merchants of death, originators of hate speech and sponsors of disunity in Nigeria.
In the same vein, Aigbegbele noted that though there pockets of banditry, ethnic clashes occasioned by foreign herders with local collaborators said has been blown out of proportion and fan divisive tendencies across religious and ethnicity in Nigeria.
“We, however, assure that no amount of sacrifice is too much for the resolution and rescue of Nigerians in danger. Consequently, we call on the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), to reign-in broadcast stations that have been abridging the Nigerian Broadcasting Code and apply appropriate sanctions where necessary.
Aigbegbele opined that while most nations are still in economic recession occasioned by the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Nigerian government has, through deft economic, prudent management of scarce resources exited the recession to the applause of the World Bank and other financial world bodies. “A case in point is the support and diplomacy given to Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, to emerge as the first African woman to occupy the exalted office of the World Trade Organization (WTO), which has drawn global acclaim to the good works of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Recalled that, one of the main policy thrusts of the Buhari administration is the security of lives and property and the safeguarding, protection of the territorial integrity of our nation; as such, due to the yearnings of Nigerians, the President re-jigged the security architecture by appointing new Service Chiefs to carry the baton of decimating the insurgents and safeguarding the nation.
He advised self-acclaimed society watchdogs to engage themselves in proffering solutions and avoid picking holes always from government policies and programmes.
He also noted that corruption under Buhari has been fought head-on, adding that there are various cases of high profile Nigerians languishing in Kuje Prison, Abuja and across the country for dipping their hands into public funds. This government has proven to be the only government that is sincerely fighting corruption in Nigeria, therefore disgruntled politicians are working hard to frustrate the anti-corruption agenda and use their ill-gotten funds to make sure that the plans and prosecution of corrupt politicians should not see the light of the day, by spending huge sums to thwart government efforts, using legal rigmarole and jargons to hold us to ransom and later accuse the government of non-performance.
Meanwhile, the group said these are the same people singing praises for the FG so what has gone wrong now that they are calling the head of Buhari if not for their selfish interests, therefore, urged Nigerians to open their eyes and read between the lines, while saying that Nigeria will overcome the security challenges because every nation goes through different phases of challenges in becoming great. We need Nigerians to become one, to be their brother’s keeper so as to surmount our challenges together as one nation.