The Nigerian Bar Association has scored Nigerian democracy as one yet to enjoy a true democracy as it celebrated its 21 years of democracy, yesterday, June 12.
In a statement made by the umbrella body of Nigerian lawyers through its National Publicity Secretary, Mr Kunle Edun, to observe the 2020 Democracy Day, said the country is yet to practice true democracy.
The association said with corruption still rife, and the National Assembly as well as the state Houses of Assembly still succumbing to “the overbearing and domineering influence of the executive arm of government, nothing has changed.”
NBA noted that despite the country’s democratic rule, the rule of law was daily threatened and subjugated and the independence of the judiciary continued to come under attack with the various interference by the executive and legislative arms of government.
It stated, “June 12 symbolizes the power and democratic will of the people over dictatorship and authoritarian rule. Twenty-seven years after the martyrdom of Chief MKO Abiola, Nigeria has yet to experience true democracy.
“The will of Nigerians has yet to find expression in the governance of the country.”
It added, “Without a virile and courageous judiciary, democracy in Nigeria and the rule of law will remain a mirage.
“Nigeria’s democracy is still far away from what the Nigerian people want, and sadly, some of our political leaders are still acting like emperors over a conquered people. In a true democracy, the political class does the bidding of the people, not the other way round.”
It said, “the disturbing trends are threats in our quest to attain true democracy.”
“Until the security agencies stop the indiscriminate arrest and detention of Nigerians; until Nigerians are no longer killed or maimed by security agencies; until Nigerians are no longer threatened with arrest and detention just for expressing their constitutional right to freedom of expression; until Nigerians are no longer arraigned in court on bogus criminal charges, the true essence of June 12 will remain elusive.” The statement added