A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mr. Femi Falana, has criticised the All Progressives Congress presidential aspirant, Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), for obtaining a loan of N27.5m to procure his party’s expression of interest and nomination form for the 2015 presidential election.
He made this remark on Thursday in Abeokuta, Ogun State, while speaking at the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Paramount FM Chapel Press Week.
He noted that the action of the former head of state was indefensible, stressing that it amounted to monetisation of politics.
He said, “It is indefensible for Gen. Buhari to have obtained a loan facility of N27.5m just to obtain a form of intent to contest in the presidential election in 2015 under the All Progressives Congress.
“Is he going to obtain another loan during his campaign, because in Nigeria, it costs billions of naira to run a presidential campaign?”
Falana, who was the guest lecturer at the event, spoke on the topic: ‘Current Security Challenges: Implication for 2015 Elections’.
On the coverage of the 2015 election, the legal luminary advised journalists not to give undue advantage to any candidate, but should give all of them equal coverage, devoid of ethnic or religious colouration.
He also advised journalists to be wary of phony politicians who would want to play to the gallery, but should focus on issues.
He said, “Journalists must show more than a passing interest on how those aspirants want to manage the economy. The government must address mass illiteracy, corruption and poverty.”
Falana noted that the nation was facing security challenges such as kidnapping, armed robbery, terrorism, human trafficking because of the unemployment rate.
The Senior Advocate of Nigeria called on the government to wake up and fight the security challenges confronting the nation the same way the Ebola scourge was tackled.
“Government gave Ebola Virus Disease attention because it is no respecter of anybody. But government is not conscious of the security of the people because they have security guards protecting them,” he said.
The event, which also featured award presentation to deserving members of staff, was graced by the Deputy Governor of Ogun State, Prince Segun Adesegun, the state NUJ chairman, Mr. Wole Sokunbi, and the secretary, Mr. Soji Amosu, among others.