Organised labour under the auspices of Association of Senior Civil Servants of Nigeria (ASCSN) has cautioned those mooting the idea to desist forthwith so as not to throw Nigeria into anarchy. In a press statement issued in Lagos yesterday, the ASCSN National President, Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama, and the Secretary-General, Comrade Alade Bashir Lawal, posited that any takeover of government by the military again would take the country 50 years backward. The ASCSN statement came on the heels of reports credited to the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekwueremadu, during a debate on the floor of the Senate in respect of the political killings in parts of the country in which he allegedly stated: “who says that the army cannot take over in Nigeria. It is possible.” According to the Union, it was worrisome that such a statement could be uttered by a highly placed citizen who owed his exalted office to democratic structures in the country. It added that the lingering crisis and total collapse of infrastructure in the country were traceable to various military regimes that rampaged the country for almost 40 years. “Besides, it is common knowledge that since the military toppled the democratically elected government of Sir Tafawa Balewa in 1966, suspended the 1963 Federal Constitution and imposed a unitary system of government, the country’s growth has been stunted.” “We are also aware that all democracies in the world including that of the United States of America, Canada, Europe, etc, are not perfect but are still evolving and being improved upon,” the Union emphasized. The ASCSN stated that the shortcomings being experienced in building democratic institutions in Nigeria were not peculiar and that with time, some of the flaws would be rectified.
It stressed the need for collaborative efforts by the stakeholders to strengthen democratic institution to checkmate the excesses of individuals who emerge at the realms of political affairs at every level. “Thus, under no circumstances should individuals, no matter how highly placed, and should begin to hint of military takeover of government in Nigeria. “This is because most of the social dislocations we experience today such as corruption, deterioration of power supply, collapse of railway, basterdization of the education system, destruction of the Civil Service, etc, were exacerbated by military dictators. “Our take is that cutting off the head will never be a solution for headache no matter how severe it is. If the likes of Ekweremadu are flying a kite through this ill-advised statement, they have better drop it. We as Nigerians will never buy that bad product which to us is outdated and unacceptable. We are not in any way prepared to go back to Siberia,” the Union emphasized. The ASCSN stressed the need for Nigerians to have faith in the ballot box as a means of changing political leaders not only by taking part in voting but also by ensuring that their votes count. It posited that instead of subtling inviting the army to take over government, political office holders and other strategic stakeholders should mobilize their constituencies to vote out those they believed were not adding value to the democratic project in the country.