The Leadership and Accountability Initiative, a non governmental organization, has petitioned United States (US) President Donald Trump over political developments in the country, particularly in Ekiti state.
The group which converged at the United States Embassy in Abuja, displayed banners with inscriptions such as ‘Save Nigeria’s Democracy,’ ‘Democracy Under Threat,’ and ‘General Buhari Respect the Rule of Law! Let the Will of the People Prevail.’
The petition was received by an official of the United States Embassy who did not disclose his name nor speak with the media.
Efforts by Daily Sun to ascertain the identity of the US official did not yield positive result at the time of filing this report.
Grievances against the Nigerian government listed in the letter titled ‘Saving Nigeria’s Democracy from Total Collapse’ revolved around the violation of citizens’ rights.
Examples cited by the group include the raiding of Akwa Ibom Governor’s Lodge in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State; the incarceration of late Gordon Obuah, former Chief Security Officer to former President Goodluck Jonathan by the Department of State Services (DSS) and the raiding of the Abuja home of ex-Governor of Sokoto State, Attahiru Bafarawa.
Others were the detention of former National Security Adviser, Colonel Sambo Dasuki and Leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), Sheik Ibrahim El Zakzaky; supervision of a systemic ethnic cleansing of Christian minorities in northern Nigeria by terrorist herdsmen in Southern Kaduna, Benue, Plateau, Taraba, Zamfara, Sokoto, and Adamawa States.
The group also listed the Boko Haram continuous threat to the Nigerian people and the Nigerian government’s placing of a total media blackout on the activities; the beaten, teargas and public dehumanisation of the Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose, amongst others.
Addressing the United States official on their mission to the embassy, the Head of Mission, Leadership and Accountability Initiative, Nwazuruahu Shield, said “We are worried that if nothing is said or done and urgently too, there might not be Nigeria after 2019 elections.
“We are worried that the world is keeping quiet while we get killed everyday. There is a cleansing in Benue and nobody is speaking. We are worried that the world is looking at us. It is looking at us! This is supposed to be a democracy. Is it until we become Somalia before the world would intervene?” Nwazuruahu asked.
He further said they were at the embassy with a letter of passionate appeal to Trump from people who see the United States as a bastion of democracy and a nation that teaches others how democratic rules should be.
According to Nwazuruahu, “We are here, we are appealing. US is a different entity on its own and we are a different country of our own. But we know that there is what is called international community concern where there are little, little threats that can threaten peace and security anywhere in the world.
“We have highlighted many of the grievances that we have; many things that have been done by this government that are against the constitution. Everything done here, we have pictures, we have examples, we have date and time.
“We have articulated the failings of this government and what we are doing today is that tomorrow, if anything happens, the world will not say we kept quiet.”
The group further said they were going to take their displeasure with the Nigerian government to the United Nations, the European Union and all embassies and missions in the country to continue pleading until someone speaks to Aso Rock.
Nwazuruahu added: “This is not how democracy is run. We saw what happened in Ekiti two days ago (Saturday). That is not democracy. How can men on uniform be supervising the snatching of ballot boxes? You cannot take the only power that the citizens have which is the power of the PVC. You cannot assault a sitting governor. We are still in a democracy,” he said.