CAN to Buhari: Release Daski, El-Zakzaky

…urges president to restrain army,police excesses in 2019 elections

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to issue a presidential order that will check the excesses of security agencies during the 2019 general election. CAN led by its President, Dr. Samson Ayokunle, stated this yesterday during a courtesy visit to President Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The Christian body noted that they were worried by the level of desperation exhibited by politicians and the intimidation of voters in recent elections in the country since the need for restraint during next year’s general election. Ayokunle called on President Buhari to respect the bails given to both former National Security Adviser (NSA) Colonel (rtd) Sambo Dasuki and the leader of the Shi’ite group and release them from custody. Among the demands presented to the President were “a presidential order to the Police and other security agencies to be non-partisan, neutral and apolitical in the coming general election with a view to securing international respect and honour for our country in the comity of nations.”

The CAN president added: “The degree of desperation we saw in the politicians during the intra-party elections that took place recently do not give many people hope concerning 2019 unless serious steps are taken to let decency prevail. “We appeal to you to make sure that the law enforcement agents and the election umpire do their work professionally without intimidation of voters, manipulation and any trace of violence throughout the period of elections. We believe that the survival and peace of Nigeria are greater than the ambition of any politician.

“We again request that your administration conducts free and fair election that would add to the accolades the country received from the conduct of 2015 elections that brought you to power.” CAN further stated that, “total adherence to the rule of law as is required by our constitution and full blown democracy by making sure that those whose bails have been granted by competent courts like Col Sambo Dasuki (rtd) and leader of the Shiites, Malam Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, are released from detention to enjoy the bail granted them by the courts of law.

The Christian organisation, while also demanding a total overhaul of the nation’s security architecture and the removal of service chiefs who, they argued had overstayed in office, urged President Buhari to halt in the use of life bullets by the Army in quelling civil unrest. “A total overhaul of the security system with a view to replacing security chiefs who have overstayed their welcome,” CAN stressed.

The CAN leader said as the nation approached another election year, there was need for a presidential order to the Police and other security agencies to be non-partisan, neutral and apolitical with a view to securing international respect and honour for the country in the comity of nations. Other demands by CAN include, “a Presidential order directing the Army to stop the use of life bullets in quelling civil disturbances and an order to the Police to provide protection to any group of people engaging in peaceful protest as the law and modern day democracy allow.”

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