Reacting to this development on behalf of the Coalition, its Executive Chairman, Comrade Debo Adeniran stated that the conference may not be necessary if its outcome would be subjected to the whimps and caprices of the National Assembly.
He said, “Sending the outcome of the Sovereign National Conference to the National Assembly for ratification defeats the purpose completely. The final decision should rest with the people. If the conference must hold, its outcome must be ratified by the Nigerian people through a referendum, anything short of this is no longer a conference of the people, but an imposition. Sending the outcome of the conference to the National Assembly to incorporate in the constitution amendment project would amount to a great waste of resources, time and effort and will make it just a conference.
It is only a fool that will continue to do the same thing and expect a different result. What Nigerians want is Sovereign National Conference. Other regimes had tried their hands on a conference. Nigerians are tired of having just a conference. We have had the Constituency Assembly in the days of Shagari, we had General Debate about the Economy under Babangida; we had the Constitutional Conference under Abacha. We had another Conference under Obasanjo; now that the outcome of this would be endorsed by the National Assembly, it would be another Talkshop because all the former conferences have not given us what we wanted.
This is the same National Assembly that has seen a National Conference as threatening to their self-serving interests. This is the political brigandage that has been holding the growth of the nation down through their jumbo salaries and high corruption. How do we expect them to vet the recommendations and adopt them without bias? How many pro-masses law has ever been passed by these so-called legislators since the inception of democracy 14 years ago? How are we sure this one too will not go the way of other pro-masses bills thrashed by the National Assembly?
Anything short of referendum is a political gimmick to bamboozle the Nigerian people.
Media Officer, CACOL
16 October, 2013