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Afenifere urges indicted ministers to step aside


President Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari

• Get best brains to tackle recession, group tells Buhari
• Condemns influx of herdsmen, raids on judges

The pan-Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to raise an economic team, who would proffer immediate solutions to the challenges of economic recession facing the nation at the moment.

Besides, the organisation said that serving ministers, who were accused of perverting the course of justice, must step aside immediately. “After that, they should go through due process of the law to either ascertain their innocence or if their guilt is established, they should be punished according to the laws of the land.

“So, we cannot be saying only judges that have been accused should be investigated; ministers too, who have been accused should step aside and face prosecution,” the group said.

The group, after its quarterly meeting at the residence of its leader, Pa. Reuben Fasoranti, warned that the present hardship could lead to social breakdown and crises if not averted.

In a communique issued yesterday by the Publicity Secretary of the group, Mr. Yinka Odumakin, Afenifere “said that the state of Nigeria’s economy is parlous, worrisome and disturbing that today we have seen it leading to massive loss of jobs.”

According to Odumakin, the nation is yet to see concrete steps being taken to ensure it is taken out of recession, stating that there is neither sound policy nor team working on revamping the economy.

Afenifere, which also condemned the raids on the homes of some judges by the Directorate of State Services (DSS), said: “We believe that is not the duty of DSS to investigate corruption.

“Investigating corruption is within the purview of the EFCC, ICPC and the police; and if the DSS comes across any crime that borders on corruption, it is to gather evidences and handover to those agencies of government for investigation and prosecution of those who are involved in the offence.

“No society should tolerate corruption because what is on offer and being sold is justice. A corrupt judge is worse than a thief and what is on offer is justice and that negates the soul of any society. Therefore, all society must do all it could to ensure its judges are free of corruption.”

Also, Afenifere condemned the killings and destruction of property by herdsmen nationwide.The group noted that the activities of herdsmen had led to low harvest in many communities.

“Due to this frustration, the Ekiti State government recently enacted a law to regulate grazing activities which we think is a commendable step,” he said. It, therefore, condemned the herdsmen for flouting the rules in their host-communities.

Also, Ondo State Agricultural Commodity Association (OSACA) has expressed concern over the rising influx of herdsmen into the state and their refusal to respect constituted authorities.

The Chairman of OSACA, Mr. Akin Olotu, raised the alarm during an award for excellence in agricultural development organised by the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) to mark the 2016 World Food Day in Akure.

According to him: “We are concerned about the state of agriculture in South-West and we are doing everything possible to contribute our quota.“Since Ekiti has now outlawed grazing, the Fulani herdsmen have now relocated to Ondo, which is a neighbouring state.”

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