Nigerian Civil Society Organizations, human rights activists, progressive political parties, socio-political movements, and Labour Unions had on Friday declared their resolve to form a political coalition in order to salvage the country from the antics of the corrupt Nigerian ruling elites.
Present at the summit were, human rights activist and lawyer Femi Falana SAN, the convener of #RevolutionNow movement and National Chairman of African Action Congress Omoyele Sowore, Professor Toye Olorode an activist and an academia, and several notable Nigerians.
The erudite Professor and human rights activist, Toye Olorode gave the opening remark for the summit. Citing the negative effects of neocolonialism on Nigeria, he said the Nigerian ruling class has always promoted ethnocentric divisions amongst Nigerians who although belong to different ethnic groups, are being oppressed by the Nigerian ruling elites who also belong to different ethnic groups within Nigeria over the years.
The Professor also talked about the incessant insecurity ravaging the country which has an historical reference. According to him, various mass uprisings has taken place in Nigeria even prior to the country’s independence in 1960. He talked about the anti-SAP movement, the various students protests, Ali Must Go, Abacha Must Go, and Babangida Must Go, the 2012 #OccupyNigeria protests and uprisings among others.
Concluding his remark, Professor Olorode honoured the memory of all late Nigerian activists, leftists, socialists, and radicals – the likes of Gani Fawehinmi, Balarabe Musa, Ken Saro-Wiwa, Funmilayo Ransome Kuti, Beko Kuti, et al.
Barrister Femi Falana SAN, one of the major organizers of the summit talked about the announcement made on Friday morning by the Chief Executive of the NNPC for Nigerians to be prepared to buy fuel at about N230 Naira per litre, he also talked about the announcement earlier this month by the PPPRA to sell fuel at 212 naira per litre.
He said if care is not taken, the Buhari’s Government is prepared to sell fuel at #500 per litre. He talked about how the Government is destroying the economy by devaluing the naira.
He talked about how the Government refused to collect $52 billion dollars from petroleum dealers.
He mentioned that the Buhari led Government is always lying that Nigeria is broke, while they keep giving leverages to rich people, and taxing the poor. Giving loans that are not being paid back to rich people, but seizing the properties of poor people who can’t pay back their loans.
He said the 1.5 billion dollars that was earmarked by the Federal Executive Council is illegal, as the National Assembly didn’t approve it.
Comrade Achike representing the Joint Action Front (JAF), talked about Nigerians standing up to be counted. He mentioned that as Nigerians have stood up over the years at various defining moments, now is another time to stand up as Nigeria is getting worse.
Comrade Remi, a labour unionist, talked about the issue of disunity of the Nigerian Left and CSOs due to little differences in ideology or approach.
He chastised the Buhari led Government over the issue of minimum wage.
The publisher of Sahara Reporters and convener of the Take It Back movement, Omoyele Sowore said Nigerian political elites the likes Babangida, Obasanjo, Buhari, Shonekan, Abacha, Obasanjo, et al had destroyed Nigeria to date, and are unfortunately being praised by many Nigerians who are ignorant of or nonchalant concerning their misdeeds.
Sowore talked about how several generations of Nigerian activists have been fighting against a common enemy – the Nigerian corrupt political elites, and nothing has changed, according to him it has become worse.
“As of today these individuals have turned Nigeria into ‘a super-power without power’. . They have made this country the headquarters of the most poorest people in the world.
“One.of those people (Ngozi Okonjo Iweala) was recently rewarded with an appointment at the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
“Of course people were scared to even condemn her in the spirit that one of us has been given an international recognition, but at what cost was that recognition to the country?. Sowore said.
“As i am speaking here today Abuja residents the poorest of the poor have no water to drink. It is even far more expensive to buy a gallon of water than what to take to buy petrol because there is no water.
“My own message to Nigerians is for you to go back and read why the French revolution happened. all of those reasons are present today in Nigeria.
“One of the important factors that finally pushed people over the edge was the rise in the price of bread. So when is it that Nigerians who are being pushed over the edge will react against these criminals?. He asked.
Sowore stated that the current situation of the country due to bad governance can no longer be sustained. He called on Nigerians home and abroad to come together and rescue the country from the shackles of the current corrupt leadership.