Two groups, the Oodua People’s Frontiers (OPF) and the Yoruba Patriots Alliance (YPA) have issued a caution to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, urging him to respect the principle of separation of powers and allow the 10th National Assembly members to elect their leaders.
According to them, the legislature is an independent body, and the presidency must refrain from intervening in their leadership elections.
Comrade Moses Oluwasegun Odewale, Convener of OPF and Comrade Anuoluwabamise Adetutu, National President of YPA expressed these concerns in a statement on Monday.
The statement reads: “The Oodua People’s Frontier (OPF) and the Yoruba Patriots Alliance (YPA), stand firmly against any attempt by this administration to undermine our democratic systems. We refuse to be silent spectators as our democracy is eroded by the very government entrusted to uphold it. We will resist every encroachment on our democratic institutions with unwavering determination.
“The people of Nigeria deserve leaders who respect the tenets of democracy and uphold the principles of good governance. We demand that the Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led government refrain from further interference in the electoral process and respect the rights of eligible candidates to contest for principal offices in the National Assembly.
“In light of the unabated intimidation of candidates and the flagrant encroachment upon the election process for the principal offices of the Senate, it becomes unequivocally evident that any Nigerian harboring the belief that this administration can genuinely revive their aspirations is gravely deceiving themselves. The prevailing demeanor and actions of the government cast profound doubts on their capacity to reignite a semblance of hope.
“We are totally dismayed at the recent trending video of the Vice President Kashim Shettima, announcing the stepping down of Hon. Aliyu Betara and Hon. Yusuf Gagdi in favor of their preferred candidate, Hon. Tajudeen. We consider this move to be not only shameful but also a blatant affront on democracy and the principles of separation of powers. In a true democratic society, the election of principal officers of the National Assembly is not the duty of the Executive arm of government, rather, it is the prerogative of the elected members of the National Assembly.
“It is their right to choose individuals who they believe will best represent the interests and aspirations of our Nation. Any attempt to manipulate or interfere with this process undermines the essence of democracy and erodes the trust and confidence of the electorate.”