Posted October 20, 2006

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The Ekiti Crisis by Dr. Jones Edobor

It is sad to observe that amongst our major problems, is the phenomenon that no matter what formal education we are given, how many universities we attend and whatever academic titles we are accorded, we basically remain the same, a people who allow our emotions to take control over the wisdom of our judgment and actions. This may be among the reasons why people who have enjoyed good formal education always fail in Nigeria. These people often display a clear ignorance of any practical knowledge of how a country functions. They display a lack of understanding over the functions of laws and the constitution of a country. Thus they continue to push the moral boundaries whenever it pleases them. To celebrate the current outcome of events in Ekiti is not to fully understand what is happening. No doubt, we are currently going through some of those dark days in the history of Nigeria and we have all reasons to be sombre and start reflecting. Only in banana republics can the interpretation of the chief Justice of the Federation be ignored in such an unashamed way, and a state within the federation is more or less insisting in their own impeachment process, ignoring all the voices of reasoning calling their attention to the unconstitutionality of their actions. One wonders whether the jubilants now consider Ektiti state a country of their own and they are now entitled to accept part of the constitution they like and disregard the other parts they dislike that may be in their way to achieving some immediate agendas. These kind of people who lack the foresight to understand the totality of what is currently at stake are no doubt not only doing Ekiti no service but pushing Nigeria towards a bleak future. Fayose may well deserve impeachment, but the applied process and tactic must give any patriotic Nigerian person grave cause for concern. What the enemies of Fayose are celebrating is the trampling over and utter disregard for our constitution and I do not understand why this should be something any mature person should be happy over. What they appear to be overlooking is that today it may be Fayose’s constitutional rights they have no respect for, but if this attitude is allowed to become commonplace nobody’s right is guaranteed. The problem with Nigeria is that those people society would normally expect to courageously show the road, control their personal emotions in times of crisis and stand for what is right are often those who through their actions actually compromise themselves, extinguish the light and lead others on the road of short-sightedness. Today, many of us Nigerians may look the other way or even applaud the open illegality and shameless affront to our constitution but when lawlessness becomes an acceptable way of interaction, we should not be surprised when our rights are snatched away by some gangsters or criminals, and there is no one there to protect our rights. If we are ready to apply and justify lawlessness because it leads to achieving our immediate objectives, we should not complain when others have no respect for the law or our constitutional rights when dealing with us.

Ekiti is part of Nigeria and whatever happens there does affect the rest of Nigeria, hence we are all stakeholders. These legislators have clearly acted outside their legislative powers and it is a real shame that there is no authority in Nigeria to stop them. Reports coming out of Nigeria is suggesting that the Anambra state legislatures are now planning to impeach their Governor who was only sworn in a couple of months ago. As lawlessness is taking over, it now seems the speakers of the House of Assembly of States have found ways to assume the office of Governorship of their respective states without going to the polls or running for that office. This is the time for us to rise against this increasing shameless move by state legislators to remove their governors without following the due process. These people are not working in the interest of their people but rather in their own personal interests. It is to be hoped that the Nigerian government through its Attorney General shall now take a decisive step to stop these rascals. The impeachment of a governor, no matter the allegations, is a serious national matter that must be handled accordingly. If things continue the way they are going, I am just wondering what last resort we have to kick out all these corrupt, undisciplined, undemocratic and lawless elements out of office to give us a fresh start.

Today, I raise my voice to declare my sadness and concern over events in Ekiti, because injustice done to one is injustice done to all. I hope the federal government will this time find the courage to resolutely say enough is enough and thus not only declare the new governor unconstitutional and his inauguration void but do everything within its power to get him out of office. Ekiti is part of Nigeria and the legislators there must be made to respect the Nigerian constitution. May God help us all grow into a mature people.