Following the Federal Government’s plan to fully implement the provisions of the Executive Order 6 of President Muhammadu Buhari, civil society organisations (CSOs) have expressed divergent views on the development.
Their comments were however centered on the banning of 50 Nigerians from travelling abroad over corrupt cases.
The Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) faulted the President Buhari order, saying it is draconian.
The CDD Director, Idayat Hassan, said it is a wrong time for President Buhari to begin the implementation of this unknown and not well studied law.
“It smacks of an attempt to muscle dissenting voices. I will advise we all exercise caution and wait for the list of people and criteria the administration has utilized in its selection. But human rights remain sacrosanct in this hard fought for democracy,” she said.
On his part, the National Coordinator, Good Governance Team (GGT), Mallam Tunde Salman, said the timing seems curious which may give raise to misinterpretations especially given the increased political activities and realignment lately preparatory to electioneering campaigns for the 2019 General Elections.
“Whatever, the government must be transparent in its implementation of executive order six more so as a court affirmed the constitutionality of the mechanism,” Salman said.
A spokesman of the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), Abubakar Jimoh, said that while the government places the ban probably as part of the anti-corruption efforts, care must be taken to ensure such is not a witch-hunting affairs especially against the oppositions.
“Giving cognizance to the ongoing clamoring for 2019 (elections), such decision must be done within the fundamental principle of justice and equity without being selective,” Jimoh said.
However, the Resource Centre for Human Rights and Civic Education (CHRICED), said the court validation of the Executive Order 6 is a big boost for anti-corruption fight.
The Executive Director of the centre, Dr. Ibrahim M. Zikirullahi, said the development is a massive boost for the anti-corruption crusade, especially coming at a time when several naysayers have questioned the legitimacy of the Executive Order 6, and have taken pot shots at the President through thinly veiled allegations of authoritarianism.
“The importance of proactive steps against the monster of corruption has further been reaffirmed. We equally applaud the President’s recent directive to the Attorney General for immediate and full implementation of the Order. CHRICED commends Justice Ifeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court Abuja for using her revered position on the bench to make a firm pronouncement to strengthen the fight against corruption.
“CHRICED is of the considered view that with more judicial interventions like these, government would have received the needed support to curb corruption and all forms of Illicit Financial Flows (IFFs). Knowing the serious damage corruption and IFFs have done to Nigeria’s developmental aspirations, all efforts towards ridding the system of leakages should be widely commended,” Zikirullahi said.