Nigerians Call For Ailing President Yar'Adua To Quit

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[Global: Africa]

Amidst a heavy police  presence, members of Save Nigeria Group today in Abuja peacefully protested the continued the absence of Umaru Yar’Adua from his office and the non-transfer of leadership of the country to the Vice President as provided for in the Nigerian Constitution. The protesters numbering thousands brought traffic on the Ibrahim Babangida way to a stop as one lane of the express way was taken over.

The event was led by Prof. Wole Soyinka, Pastor Tunde Bakare of the Latter Rain Assembly, Lagos, Femi Falana, Joe Okei-Odumakin, Chief Solomon Asemota (SAN), Uche Onyegwoucha, Ayo Obe, Olisa Agbakoba, Clement Nwankwo, Sam Amadi, Otive Igbuzor,Wale OShun, Femi Ojudu, Pastor (Mrs.) Sarah, Tunji Abayomi, Ben Ezeagwu, Tanko Yunusa, Najaatu Mohammed and Yinka Odumakin. Also represented were several non-governmental coalitions, including Mr. Debo Adeniran’s Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders (CACOL).  

Among others, the protesters called for the sacking of the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice; Mr. Mike Aondoakaa, whom they accused of playing on Nigerians intelligence with his numerous lies about the President’s whereabouts.

They also demanded:

•    the application of Sections 145 and 146 of Nigeria’s Constitution;
•    Electoral Reform based on the report of the Justice Muhammed Uwais panel;
•    That Nigerians reject the selective “night calls” by Mr. President to some public officers
•    Rejection of the subversion of the Nigerian Constitution.

Prof. Soyinka called on Nigerians to always take to the streets whenever their rights are being threatened as that is a veritable part of democracy. Addressing the crowd at the National Assembly complex, the Nobel Laureate said he considered today’s protest the most successful and far more beautiful walks he had embarked upon. He welcomed Nigeria to the stream of rebirth.

He decried a situation where a few unpatriotic Nigerians will feed Nigerians with lies over the status of our ailing President as well as the extra-judicial killings going on in the country in the absence of government.

Pastor Tunde Bakare in his address stated that the Presidency is neither hereditary nor a birthright, but a constitutional office which President Yar’Adua has shown that he is not capable of occupying. He called on the sick President to pack his luggage and go home.

He also stated that the protest is not for the benefit of Vice President Jonathan but that of good governance.  According to the fiery Pastor, “Nigerian Constitution made provisions for a time as this, that provision must be obeyed. We will not allow them to continue with this power vacuum that they have subjected us to for over 50 days.  We say enough is enough.”

He blasted the members of the National Assembly for not respecting the wishes of Nigerians and called on them to live up to expectation and commence impeachment proceedings against the President for abdicating on his duties.

For the rest of the report please see

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