OBA of Lagos, Rilwan Akiolu I, yesterday in Lagos, exploded, saying he would shake the nation after the 2015 general elections. He threatened to reveal roles played by some Yoruba Obas during the regime of late military dictator, General Sani Abacha.
Oba Akiolu, who was the father of the day at the public presentation of a 368-page book titled, “Corruption and Human Rights Law in Africa”, authored by Dr Kolawole Olaniyan, a renowned lawyer and legal adviser in Amnesty International, AI, noted that no single person should be blamed for Nigeria’s woes.
His words: “I will shake this nation after the election in February. The man who made the statement that I lifted oil should cover his face in shame because I was still a serving police officer and I wonder how I would have such time to be involved in the lifting of oil. Those who collected Abacha’s money know themselves and I will quote witnesses. Let us stop apportioning blames, forget the past and work towards a better future for this country. Do not put 100 percent blame on President Goodluck Jonathan because the person who caused the problem knows himself.”
The Oba called on Nigerians to see the battle against the scourge of Ebola Virus Disease, EVD, Boko Haram insurgency, among other challenges confronting Nigeria as a collective responsibility that must be battled by all.
Mr. Femi Falana, SAN, who chaired the occasion on behalf of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Mariam Aloma Mukhtar, described the death of a Nigerian lady in Dubai for Ebola after she was quarantined on arrival from Nigeria yesterday morning as a result of deep corruption in the system.
Falana said: “Because of massive corruption in the continent today, the fundamental human rights of the people have been severely infringed upon. What the author has done in his book is that he has challenged all of us to think about the effect of corruption in the continent. The challenge of Ebola is not being tackled under the provisions of the law.”
He also blamed corruption for the failure of the Federal Government to allegedly care for Nigerian soldiers fighting insurgency in Borno State, especially without adequate weapons and welfare. This led to the protest by their wives, saying “this is a manifestation of the collapse of the Nigerian state. So something must be done.”
In her remarks, Deputy Consul-General, United States, US Embassy in Nigeria, Dehab Ghebreab, said there was a link between human rights violation and corruption in Africa.
According to her, “corruption can breed militancy and insurgency, which we have been witnessing in Africa.”
She stressed the determination of the US government to support Africa in tacking the menace, while commending steps taken by the author for the book on human rights and corruption.
A senior advocate of Nigeria, SAN, Mr. Tayo Oyetibo, applauded the author, saying it “will definitely expand our scope and frontier of the human rights law in Nigeria and Africa.”
Also in his remarks, Mr Richard Akinnola, an activist said, “Corruption is not just about looting the nation’s treasury, it is also corruption when our value system is been infringed on.”
On his part, the author said he wrote the book to expand the provisions of the law on human rights law as well as expose the extent at which corruption had denied Africans their natural fundamental rights.