CLO urges president to beware of old corrupt politicians
A Civil Society Organization – Civil Liberties Organization (CLO), has drawn the attention of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu not to the regrouping of old corrupt politicians who meant no good for the country.
The group through its President, Mr Igho Akeregha, made the observation Tuesday at a press conference held in Abuja.
The CLO President decried that Nigeria has been degenerated to one of the most corrupt countries in the world, a safe haven for bandits and terrorists as well as a comfortable environment for all manners of criminal enterprises to thrive.
Further in his remarks, Akeregha informed Nigerians to be mindful of a group of former governors with the codename “Class of 99”, who he stressed, were former governors elected in 1999, some of whom were convicted for corruptions but are currently frequenting Aso Rock and having meetings with President Tinubu.
He said: “The CLO is appalled by recent developments in the country where in June, former governor of Delta State indicted for corruption, led Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State and former Governor Nyesome Wike of Rivers State to visit President Bole Ahmed Tinubu in Aso Rock Presidential Villa.
“Ibori, a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was in office when Tinubu was Governor of Lagos State between 1999 and 2007 and on July 12, former Governor Lucky Igbinedion of Edo State, who was also indicted for corruption but took advantage of a plea bargain to escape jail was among more than 20 former governors who visited Tinubu at the Presidential Vila.
“Apart from the few good ones among them, many of these Governors who hid under an amorphous num de guere ‘Class of 99’ were notorious for setting the template for massive corruption in the country by fleecing their states and stashing the looted funds in foreign bank accounts.
“While briefing Journalists on behalf of the ‘Class of 99’, Igbinedion had said the visit was to assure Mr Tinubu of their support and cooperation.
“We met the President as a colleague Governor that laid the foundation of the current democracy in Nigeria in 1999, which has continued to be strengthened up to today”, he had said.
According Akeregha, Igbinedion claimed that they went to congratulate Tinubu on his election and to thank him for appointing one of them, George Akume as the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.
He further claimed that they spoke about security, electricity supply to Nigerians which they said were key factors in the development of any economy with Tinubu, who assured them of the administraton’s preparedness to tackle the issues head long.
However, the CLO said: “Like many Nigerians, we are not deceived by the regrouping of these former governors who are now shedding crocodile tears over the state of anomy in the county.
“They spent eight years in office and some of them went to the Senate, what did they do? They continued in their old ways. And what manner of support would they be giving to Tinubu beyond an arrangement to accommodate them in the underdeveloping the country?
The CLO further asked why a country with so much oil and gas resources should import fuel, leaving four moribund and dead refineries that gulped billions of dollars in turn-around maintenance.
He referred to the old refineries as a conduit pipe through which the federal government syphons public funds.
“The implication of the poor and inept management of the country led to Nigeria foreign debt rising from its former position of N46.25 trillion as at December 21 2022 to N49.85 trillion naira (108.30 billion dollars) on March 31.”
This statistics, the organization said, was backed by recent report from The Debt Management Office(DMO).
Mr Akeregha noted that CLO is a member of Joint Action Forum (JAF), which said collaborated with the media, patriotic Nigerians and other civil societies to chase the military out of power, culminating in the historical return to civilian rule in 1999.
According to him, there would be strict resistance to draconian rules, especially the second increment on fuel pump price.
In attendance were Comrade James Oyewale, CLO Chairman North Central, Comrade Chidi Ekpewerechi, CLO Liaison Officer, Comrade Aluadko-David Steve, CLO Director and Comrade Ibechukwu Ezike, the Executive Director of CLO.
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