..vows to occupy NNPC head office on Wednesday over lingering fuel scarcity
By Luminous Jannamike
ABUJA – Members of “Our Mumu Don Do” movement led by maverick entertainer Charles Oputa, popularly known as Charly Boy, on Tuesday, stormed the National Assembly to seek audience with the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, over what it described as ‘observable lacuna’ in the nation’s electoral laws.
The group also decried the poor funding of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, by the National Assembly in last year’s appropriation which, it said, impedes the success of the on-going Continuous Voters’ Registration, CVR, exercise
Speaking during the protest, Oputa said the group considers it worrisome that the country has repeatedly failed to convince millions of Nigerians, through relevant reforms, to trust the electoral process which results in the steady decline in voters’ turn-out since 2003 general elections.
He expressed the willingness of the group to strategically engage with the leadership of the National Assembly on the kinds of reforms that will help remedy the deficiencies plaguing Nigeria’s electoral process; warning that if necessary actions are not taken to address the issues, it will be difficult to eradicate voter-apathy and disenfranchisement, and even more difficult to sustain our democracy.
He said: “We wish to acknowledge the commitment of the National Assembly, especially the senate in carrying out some far-reaching reforms and amendments of the Electoral Act, eeven though it could still be better.
“We are also not unmindful of the fact that we cannot have a perfect document yet; as ours is stil a growing democracy but hopefully, we will continue to learn from our mistakes, and cover necessary gaps.
“In furtherance of our engagement with all stakeholders in the electoral process, we have decided to meet with you following some observable lacuna in the on-going registration of new voters, a development which has been attributed to poor funding and other issues. It may interest you to know that ‘Children of Democracy’ born after May 29, 1999, will be eligible to vote for the first time in 2019, and we must ensure that they are given a pride of place in our nation.”
The members of the group were received at the National Assembly by, Hakeem Baba-Ahmed the Chief of Staff to the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, who promised to convey their message to his principal.
In another development, the group has disclosed its plans to occupy the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) towers in Abuja tomorrow, to protest the lingering fuel crisis in the country.
In a statement jointly signed by its spokesman, Adebayo Raphael, the OurMumuDonDo movement said it is displeased that President Buhari has failed consistently to fulfill his promise of putting an to end to the fuel problem.
It added that “since the lingering fuel scarcity has now reached an alarming crescendo of misery and public outcry, we at the OurMumuDonDo Movement have decided to ensure that the President, the Nigerian National Petroleum Cooperation, NNPC, and other stakeholders in the oil sector are compelled to find a lasting solution to the current crisis and abate the sufferings of the Nigerian people across the nation.
“We cannot accept the deceptive strategy of using propaganda to normalize this scarcity, while Nigerians are buying at cut-throat prices in different states.
“We hereby call on all Nigerians affected by the current fuel scarcity to join us on the aforementioned date to demand an end to the seemingly unending crisis.”