United States President, Barack Obama, has been formally presented with a petition calling on President Muhammadu Buhari to respect and uphold court orders and the constitution of Nigeria or resign from office.
The petition, championed by a Legal Practitioner, Constitutional and Human Rights Lawyer, Ms. Carol Ajie, was sent to Obama on Monday, urging him to bear his influence on Buhari to respect the rule of law.
Ajie, in the petition further urged the Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), lawyers, legislators, National Judicial Council (NJC) and benchers, among others, to “call on President Buhari to resign from office for his disobedience to court orders.”
The petition which was launched on the new year eve through the popular petition site Change.org, has over 4,000 signatories and 47,000 views.
The lawyer who had the support of other members of the judicial arm of the government, including the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), asserted that Buhari, by his statements during the Presidential Media Chat at the State House in Abuja, was behind the flagrant disobedience to court orders.
Ajie, therefore, called on President Obama and other concerned stakeholders to “respectfully call President Buhari to order, prohibit violence from politics and rights advocacy campaigns, ask President Buhari to respect court orders or resign, support Nigeria and Nigerians to achieve true federalism or support the path to a confederation of independent states in Nigeria.”
She said that some of the factors that necessitated the petition includes: “sectional tension, deliberate acts of inhumanity and dehumanisation, gender injustice, presidential profligacy and budget 2016 and disobedience of court orders.”
According to her, “President Buhari’s unfair tactics, expression of prejudices and hostility towards the people commonly known as ‘Biafrans’ in the South-eastern region of Nigeria, is a bad precedent against our peaceful co-existence. The gravamen of his complaint is that the Igbos did not vote for him in March 2015. His supporters now tag the South-east derogatorily as ‘Biafraud.’ Elected as President, he must be magnanimous in victory.
“President Buhari was quoted as saying those who didn’t vote for him will be punished and sadly demonstrated this in a modern society.”
In the petition, the human rights activist accused the president of deliberate acts of inhumanity and dehumanisation, especially against the Shiites and Biafran agitators, liking his treatment of these two groups to what led to the 1994 Rwanda genocide.
She also accused President Buhari of gender injustice, saying: “For obscure reasons, President Buhari ceded only 15 per cent to women in his cabinet, without remorse or apologies. Hence must be held to keep this and his other campaign promises and pledges, please.”