Change in Nigeria’s Democracy, Work in Progress, Says Abe

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Magnus Abe
  • Accuses Amaechi of maligning him

Peter Uzoho

A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and immediate past senator representing Rivers South-east senatorial district at the eight National Assembly, Senator Magnus Ngei Abe, has said that the process of change in Nigeria’s democracy is still work in progress and stressed the need to address political tensions in the country.

This is even as the ex-lawmaker accused the immediate past Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi of employing a propagandist to false fully malign and de-market him with respect to last governorship election in Rivers State.

According to a statement issued yesterday by his Spokesman, Parry Saron Benson, Abe stated this when he featured on a national television programne in Abuja.

He specifically called for the entrenchment of strong political institutions to boost political stability and discourage violence, bigotry and rascality that are currently playing out in Nigeria’s political environment

He said: “I think the time has come for us to address the issue of Nigeria, the kind of political parties that we have and what we should do to make the parties work better to serve the interest, not just of its members but the interest of the country at large.

“Political parties that are truly democratic, that have clear rules of internal democracy, that allows the participation and free expression of will by its members.

“I am concerned about what we can do to make our systems stronger to avoid this kind of violent situations being experienced in the country because if you look around not much seems to have changed. The same kind of scenarios that we witnessed in Rivers State and in other states of the federation where some political parties could not produce a strong internal conflict resolution mechanism is still on-going.

“There are no clear cut, all-inclusive procedures that could allow free expression of will by party members.  I think all Nigerians, not just members of political parties but all citizens must be concerned about the direction of party politics in that respect.”

However, Abe accused Amaechi of hiring a propagandist, Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, to falsely malign and de-market him in order to justify the unjustifiable injustice that was perpetrated on Rivers people during the last political dispensation.

He said: “When people have already done something wrong and realised  that what they have done is not defendable, not acceptable and that reasonable people will not accept it neither can it be defended, they go back to create a narrative that justifies what clearly cannot be justified.”

“I have decided to ignore all those things because Amaechi himself knows that it is not true. Chief Eze who is saying it knows it is not true and the majority of reasonable people in the country know that those things are nothing but pure blackmail”.

Abe stated that he has no personal grudges against Amaechi and his anointed candidate at the Rivers governorship poll, Mr. Tonye Cole, noting that Amaechi should stop seeing himself as the only highway in the APC such that it is either everybody follows his decisions or be booted out of the party.

According to him, there is no such provision in the party’s constitution.

“I don’t think that members of the party even those who are with him (Amaechi) will agree with that attitude. The nature of power in this country is that people see themselves as helpless when the powers that be, have taken a stand.”

 Abe, who also said that the process of change in Nigeria’s democracy was still a work in progress, however, called on politicians in the country to return power to the people by creating clear processes that could galvanise and determine the wishes of the people