Posted by News Express | 21 October 2020 | 760 times
By VICTOR IKHATALOR
At the root of the malaise that has culminated in #ENDSARS, #ENDPoliceBrutality, #PoliceReforms – is the impunity and debauched conspicuous consumption which have perennially been on display from political and public office holders in the country. To that effect the streets echo the following demands:
Following up from the widely circulated #ENDSARS 5 point demand and to give meaning and lasting resolution to #ENDPoliceBrutality – the government must immediately reconstitute the Governing Council of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to enable it discharge its functions with respect to cases of human rights violation in Nigeria.
In the same vein, the National Assembly must immediately amend the Police Service Commission Act with a view to making it independent, responsive and viable. The Commission shall outline Police rules of engagement that shall be adequately publicized and disseminated to the Public. The Commission shall be chaired by a retired Justice of the Supreme or Appeal court. Funding for the Commission shall henceforth be independent of the Police. The Commission shall have a time frame of no more than three months within which to reach outcomes from receipt of complaint petitions.
At the heart of Police brutality is the foundation of impunity derived from our electoral process and enthronement of political leaders – the National Assembly must immediately pass the amended Electoral Act for the President’s ascent. Components of the amended act shall include – electronic voting, independent candidature, a cut-off period for litigation arising from electoral outcomes that shall end before the date elected persons take oath of office.
The lack of trust in the ability of the justice system to bring to book “misleaders”, who steal from the public till, even when they somehow get to see the inside of a court is unedifying. Impunity is bolstered by the absence of prompt consequence for bad behaviour and is a radicalizer that erodes public trust in governance.
To redress this and to engender confidence in justice delivery – the National Assembly must immediately pass the Special Crimes Court Bill 2016.
With revenue accruing to the nation severely diminished, thus translating into further hardships for Nigerians, we can no longer afford to drain scarce resources in recurrent expenditure servicing political and public office holders – the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) must immediately send a revised remuneration template to the National Assembly to effect constitutional change reflecting our present realities – unambiguously and very clearly, it shall be criminal for any political or public office holder singly or in a group to prescribe salary or allowances not covered by this new template. Remuneration shall henceforth be decided using the Federal Civil Service Commission (FCSC) template.
The highest political office holder in the land shall be entitled to no more than a 100 per cent increment in salary and allowances on the highest Civil Service grade level. Only the President and Vice President shall be entitled to after office remuneration in the country.
In the light of the ever spiraling unemployment rate of the youth population and the consequent frustration, crime and insecurity that are offshoots – government must immediately put in place a grant scheme beginning with a minimum 1 million youth driven MSMEs across the country. A minimum grant of N1 million should be accessed by each business with each targeted to absorb and create a minimum of 10 new jobs within a year. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) shall only supervise this process. Implementation of this scheme shall be done by an independent committee of private sector players in the frame of the CACOVID initiative.
These demands (by no means exhaustive) and continuing protests are advanced peacefully and in non-violence. In the meantime, we are hoping to see real arrests and parading of those who have slain our kith and kin. We are keenly looking forward to action plans to holistically overhaul the Police in training, welfare etc. We need action, timelines, deliverables – not stories. #endpolicebrutality
We enjoin Nigerians across the country, in diaspora and friends of Nigeria across the world to come out en masse on Friday the 23rd of October dressed in black, with flowers and leaves in peaceful assemblage to commemorate our fallen compatriots across the country whose lives were cut short brutally. As we lay these wreaths across public spaces we will honour the names of our fallen and send a message that we will no longer be nameless citizens. In memoriam: October 23rd – the day of black.
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