Yetunde Oladejo, Osogbo
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Osun state has warned President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately drop plans to impose travel ban on the governors of Ekiti and Rivers state, Nyesom Wike and Ayo Fayose, noting that the act is capable of plunging the country into civil war.
The party, in a statement issued in Osogbo Tuesday, by its Public Relations Officer and Director of Research, Publicity and Strategy, Prince Diran Odeyemi, maintained that tampering with the constitutional immunity of governors could spell doom for the country.
He stated that there was nothing done to Buhari by the duo that Osun state governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola did not do to former president, Goodluck Jonathan while in office.
Odeyemi said the same Section 308 of the constitution that gives the President immunity also provides the governors with same leverage, adding that, instead of tinkering with the idea of travel ban on the governors, if any security infraction is noticed, the President should approach the court.
The PDP scribe recalled how the PDP Obasanjo-led Federal Government approached the court when the administration of Senator Bola Tinubu created local government areas in Lagos state.
Odeyemi opined that adding the salt of travel ban on governors with immunity which is the same as the president, to the injury of constant flouting of court orders by the Buhari administration in the last one, is not portraying the president as a true democrat.
The statement reads: “Since the news broke of plans by Buhari to ban PDP governors Ayo Fayose and Nyesom Wike from travelling using Department of State Security, (DSS) as threat, images of events of the past years have kept on reappearing.
“Allusions have been made to how His Imperial Majesty, Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuade and his friend, Emir of Kano, Alhaji Ado Bayero were slammed with travel ban by Gen Buhari in 1984.
“Also reference has been made to how President Shehu Shagari was kept under house arrest and his vice, Dr. Alex Ekwueme, locked up in Kirikiri where he nearly died when that administration was toppled by Buhari in 1983.
“History also records how Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Chief Bola Ige and others were hauled into prison by the same Buhari regime.
“We hope President Buhari will not take wrong advice because the situation now does not favour tampering with the constitution as he did in 1983.
“We don’t want anything that can truncate this democracy. Attempt to strip two PDP governors of their immunity when Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola did worse things to Jonathan as President and nothing happened to him is capable of enacting civil war”, the party said.
The party then called on all past Heads of State and Presidents to prevail on Buhari to shelve the idea to safe the country of needless tension and constitutional crises.