Monday, September 21, 2015

#SarakiGate: National Association Of Nigerian Students Zones Distance Selves From National Body’s Support Of Senator Saraki

NANS President, Tijani Usman
The southwest zone (“Zone D”), south south and southeast zone (“Zone B”),  the north (“Zone A”)  and the  Office of the Vice President , External Affairs of the  of the National Association of Nigerian Students have distanced themselves from the leadership of its national body that recently issued a statement voicing support for embattled Senate President, Bukola Saraki, who is facing trial for corruption. In a statement released today and signed by Okikiola Ogunsola, its coordinator, the southwest zone of NANS declared that, despite its respect for the national leadership, the zone “would not in any way subject ourselves to any act by our national body that tends to undermine or coerce [the] rule of law.”

Mr. Ogunsola, a student at Tai Solarin University of Education, added that the southwest zone of NANS wished to state “in strong term that our zone is not in support of the planned protest by the civil society group under the aegis of Heritage Center and NANS.”

He recalled that NANS as a collective group recently pledged its.......
support for President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration in its fight against crime and corruption. According to his statement, “our position is that any individual or group charged or alleged to have participated directly or indirectly in misappropriation, mismanagement or [acquisition of] properties in [an] unlawful manner should submit to rule of law to take effect.

“We believe that [the] rule of law needs to be respected, and we Nigerian students are watching with clear interest how the present administration is handling its fight against corruption.”

Mr. Ogunsola’s statement recalled that the Code of Conduct Tribunal had tried several people during the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan, noting that those found innocent were discharged.

“The planned protest on the basis that [the] alleged falsification in the Senate President’s asset declaration was politically motivated or an act to witch-hunt him is baseless,” he wrote in a statement.

The statement concluded that members of the southwest zone of NANS “dissociate ourselves from this act and call on the Federal Government, agencies concerned and individuals to allow justice to prevail. And [we] equally urge the Senate President Bukola Saraki to honor the rule of law for sustainability of our country’s democracy.”

 Apart from the “Zone D”, the vice president of External Affairs at NANS, Ogunkuade Oluwatosin also rejected the planned solidarity march for Saraki that had been planned by the President of NANS, Tijani Usman, in conjunction with the Director-General of the Heritage Center, Dr. Katch Ononuju.

Other student groups who renounced the solidarity march includes the Coordinator of NANS “Zone B”, Comrade Okorie Ikechukwu,Secretary General of NANS “Zone A”, Comrade Ibrahim A Ibrahim and Comrade Shettima Umar, President of the National Union of Borno State Students ( "NUBOSS).

They all condemned the President of NANS for siding with corruption and vowed to resist any attempt to drag NANS into Mr. Saraki's desire to subvert the rule of law.

- Saharareporters

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