A pro-democracy group has raised the alarm over a gathering plot to undermine the National Assembly, warning that the “coordinated conspiracy” was capable of subverting democracy and throwing the nation into fascism.
The organisation, Coalition in Defence of Nigerian Democracy and Constitution (CDNDC) has also vowed to press for international sanctions against political leaders and state actors, who are creating a chilling climate of fear and engaging in odious action against federal lawmakers and the opposition.
According to a statement signed by the Convener of the group, Ariyo-Dare Atoye, CDNDC condemned the sponsored attacks against some Senators and lawmakers perceived as opposition to Buhari Presidency, and the recent treasonable invasion of the National Assembly by some thugs.
“Democracy has come under serious and sustained assaults in a series of oppressive and undemocratic acts committed by the President Muhammadu Buhari administration in the last three years against the parliament and the people, and there is no more reason why any concerned Nigerian should remain aloof.
“Sadly, autocratic leadership is becoming entrenched, and it is fast eroding basic democratic principles, as the Buhari Presidency transmutes into a full-blown dictatorship, unleashing terror and security agencies on lawmakers and civilians perceived as political enemies and oppositions.
“As a concerned civil group, we are drawing the attention of the international community and Nigerians, to some coordinated wicked onslaught against the members of the National Assembly, especially Senators who have demonstrated boldness to call the executive to order over unconstitutional actions.
“We recall that a number of incidents since the beginning of the year have once again, brought to the fore the character of our law enforcement agencies, and the extent to which they and the political actors who control them, can go to deal with perceived enemies.
“ CDNDC shall not hesitate to press for international sanctions against political leaders and state actors, especially in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), who are engaging in the odious act of coordinating attacks against opposition and creating a chilling climate of fear.
“For instance, outspoken Senator Dino Melaye who over the weekend, survived a contrived recall process against him, has been ceaselessly targeted by the Police, acting under instruction from the Buhari regime, and also consistently attacked by agents of Kogi governor, Yahaya Bello over his stance against wide spread impunity in the state.
“Also over the weekend, the mover of the motion for the commencement of impeachment of President Buhari, over the illegal deduction of money from the federation account without the approval of the National Assembly, Senator Matthew Urhoghide representing Edo South, came under serious attack that was supervised by the Edo State governor, Godwin Obaseki.
“The irrepressible Senator Shehu Sani representing Kaduna Central in the Senate, has also faced repeated persecutions from anti-democratic forces in his state, who are working to destroy descent and gap oppositions. So also several other Senators for taking a stand against the Buhari Presidency.
“We are not unaware that the main target of this coordinated plot to undermine the institution of the legislature, is the President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, and his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu, who have been subjected to an unprecedented level of victimisations and abuses.
“Need we remind all those working to undermine the National Assembly that the legislative arm is the bastion of democracy and the pedestal on which every democracy, whether presidential, parliamentary or any other form of democratic government stands, and that any attempt to weaken it is an attempt to subvert democracy?
“No one should attempt to kill the national assembly simply because they do not like the faces of Saraki, Ekweremadu, Dino, Sani, and others, or simply because of the fact that they are doing their job to curb executive excesses and recklessness.
“We condemn the recent treasonable invasion of the National Assembly by some thugs who desecrated the hallowed chamber and made away with the Mace in coup-like fashion, and we want to let those who are covering them now, to know that no matter how long, they can never escape justice.
“Having lost the confidence, goodwill and support of the Nigerian people who voted it into power, it is no longer hidden that the APC-led government has become increasingly desperate to coarse every form of opposition and use state instrument to silence descent, ahead of the 2019 general elections,” the statement said.