Jonathan has declared war on Nigeria, says Buhari
Allegations wild, totally unsustainable, says President
Former Head of State Gen. Muhammadu Buhari yesterday said the nation’s democracy is endangered by the gale of impeachments in the country.
He warned President Goodluck Jonathan against recourse to “induced impeachments” of opposition governors.
He asked Jonathan to apply the brakes because decapitation of the opposition will not help the nation’s fragile democracy.
Gen. Buhari in a statement issued yesterday, said “the dangerous clouds are beginning to gather and the vultures are circling”
He added: “Whether or not President Goodluck Jonathan is behind the gale of impeachments or the utilisation of the desperate tactics to suffocate the opposition and turn Nigeria into a one-party state, what cannot be denied is that they are happening under his watch, and he cannot pretend not to know, since that will be akin to hiding behind one finger.
“In my capacity as a former Head of State, rather than a politician, I have spoken to President Jonathan in private over these issues but indications are that the strategy has not yielded positive fruits.”
Gen. Buhari, who said his warning transcended being an opposition leader, raised the alarm over what he described as “palpable uncertainty” dotting the nation’s political landscape.
He added: “I cannot, just because I am an opposition politician, fail to do what is expected of me as a former Head of State to help rescue our nation in times of great trouble and palpable uncertainty.
“History will not be kind to me if I sit back while things turn bad, just so that no one will accuse me of partisanship.
“Yes, I am a politician. Yes, I am in the opposition. Yes, there is the tendency for my statement to be misconstrued as that of a politician rather than a statesman. But I owe it as a matter of duty and honour, and in the interest of our nation, to speak out on the dangerous trajectory that our nation is heading.
“I can say, in all sincerity, that I have seen it all, as an ordinary citizen, a military officer, a state governor, a Minister, a Head of State, a man who has occupied many sensitive posts and a politician. I have been a close participant and witness to Nigeria’s political history since independence in 1960.
“Our country has gone through several rough patches, but never before have I seen a Nigerian President declare war on his own country as we are seeing now.
“Never before have I seen a Nigerian President deploy federal institutions in the service of partisanship as we are witnessing now. Never before have I seen a Nigerian President utilise the commonwealth to subvert the system and punish the opposition, all in the name of politics.
“Our nation has suffered serious consequences in the past for egregious acts that are not even close to what we are seeing now. It is time to pull the brakes.”
Gen. Buhari said the way and manner the people of Nasarawa State defied military tanks to protest against the plot to impeach Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura signposted ominous clouds for democracy.
He added: “The dangerous clouds are beginning to gather and the vultures are circling, and these have manifested in Nasarawa where the ordinary people have defied guns and tanks to protest the plan to impeach Governor Umar Tanko Al-Makura in a repeat of the bitter medicine forced down the throat of Governor Murtala Nyako.
“The people’s protest in Nasarawa is a sign of what to come if the Federal authorities continue to target opposition state governors for impeachment.
“In the long run, the impeachment weapon will be blunted. Positions will become more hardened on both sides and Nigeria and Nigerians will become the victims of arrested governance and possible anarchy.”
Gen. Buhari reminded Jonathan that no democracy can survive without a virile opposition.
He said: “I, along with many other patriotic Nigerians, fought for the unity and survival of this country. Hundreds of patriotic souls perished in the battle to keep Nigeria one. The blood of many of our compatriots helped to ensure the birth of the democracy we are practising today.
“Let no one, whether the leader or the led, the high or the low, a member of the ruling or the opposition do anything to torpedo the system.
“Let no one, whether on the altar of personal ambition or pretension to higher patriotic tendencies, do anything that can detonate the keg of gunpowder on which the nation is sitting.
“It is time for all concerned to spare a thought for the ordinary citizens who have yet to see their hopes, dreams, and aspirations come to reality within the general context of nationhood.”
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