This is the official blog of the Nigeria-based Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), a human rights organization which promotes, protects and projects the rights of Muslims. This group condemns terrorism and all acts of violence. Its motto is 'Dialogue, Not Violence'
Tuesday, July 18, 2017
PROTEST AGAINST BANIRE: A DANGEROUS PRECEDENT
PROTEST AGAINST BANIRE: A DANGEROUS
Some supporters of the All Progressive
Congress (APC) staged a protest in Lagos yesterday to demand the expulsion of
the National Legal Adviser of the party, Dr. Muiz Banire (SAN). The demand was
premised on the latter’s recent condemnation of the imposition of candidates in
the coming local government election in Lagos State.
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) regards the protest as a dangerous precedent.As victims of a 16-year pillaging
of the common wealth of the Nigerian people by the former ruling party, the
People’s Democratic Party (PDP), we are concerned that such internal wrangling
is likely to open a window of opportunity for the PDP and its army of greedy,
selfish and overtly corrupt politicians to stage a comeback.
It is natural for innocent onlookers
who are watching the unfolding scenario to start feeling unsafe. Corruption
drove Nigeria to the pitiable economic condition in which it found itself today
and the PDP should be blamed for the country’s present woes. The present
administration’s headlong attack on corrupt elements in the country gave hope
to the masses but crisis in APC is beginning to becloud this sense of security
moreso since the war against corruption is far from being over as new
challenges rear their ugly heads on a daily basis.
APC leaders should
borrow a leaf from its recent loss in Osun
senatorial election where victory was snatched by opportunists whose major
credential is dancing on their fathers’ grave. Charles Darwin’s wise words come
in handy in these circumstances: “It is not the
strongest of the species or the most intelligent that survives. It is the one
most adaptable to change”
By calling for
adherence to democratic principles as entrenched in the party’s constitution
and demanding a stop to the imposition of candidates, Banire was merely performing
his duty as the party’s legal adviser. The call for expulsion is therefore
arbitrary. It should be ignored in the interest of the party and that of the
Nigerian people at large.
We advise APC leadership at the national level to immediately
set its reconciliation machinery in motion and to up its internal democracy
game. At the local level, the leaders are advised to stoop to conquer. They
should remember that the hawks are waiting by the ringside. We appeal to all
stakeholders to sheath their swords in the interest of Nigeria. There is also
no need to feel slighted as this will not diminish an inch from the greatness
of the founding fathers of the party.
Banire represents the
new generation politician and any attempt to expel him for defending noble
principles of democracy will send the wrong signals to up and coming generation
of politicians. While Banire may have fallen foul
of Woodrow Wilson’s advice that, “If you want to make enemies, try to change
something”, APC leadership should be wary of ignoring Hegel’s warning that
history always repeats itself and Karl Marx’s rejoinder that the first
repetition of history is a tragedy and the second, a farce.
We further advice that
APC leadership should not see Banire as an enemy. Neither should it frown at
his exposure of certain autocratic propensities within the party. Former
President Goodluck Jonathan learnt too late that it is better to listen to
complaints coming from within and he paid dearly for it.
According to Aristotle in his Analytics, “Opposition is true friendship. The man who tells you that you have a
stinking rear is your friend. He is only drawing attention to your bodily filth
and asking you to do something about it. He is better than a sycophant who says
you can always come out of the sewage tank and smell roses!”
a last note, we affirm that we are not interested in any political party. Our
concern springs from genuine fear for a return to unbridled kleptomania,
reckless spending and free descent into corruption without tears in Nigeria.
MURIC’s advocacy is party-blind, ethnically neutral and religiously liberal. We
are middle-roaders and social jihadists seeking food for hungry Nigerians,
healing for the sick, clothing apparels for the naked and shelter for the
Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)