16 March 2014, Lagos – Human rights lawyer, Bamidele Aturu, yesterday frowned on the call for the removal of fuel subsidy by the Finance Commissioners of the 36 States in Nigeria, insisting that such call is not supportable as the law stands in the country today.
Aturu, in an email reaction to THISDAY, also described Boko Haram as a reflection of the greed and emasculation of the masses by the rapacious elite in Nigeria, and said any subsidy removal would amount to an atrocious violation of section 4 of the Prices Control Act and section 6 of the Petroleum Act.
According to him, “a court of competent jurisdiction has also ruled in the suit I filed on the 14th of October 2009 that deregulation is illegal, unconstitutional and of no effect whatsoever. But even on other grounds, deregulation is unsupportable. “The fact that the refineries are not functioning cannot be blamed on the people. “Our people have the right to enjoy petroleum products at very cheap prices. Indeed that is the only thing they seem to ever hope to enjoy. Deregulation is tantamount to treating headache by cutting off the head. It is unreal, and unwise,” the fiery lawyer added.
Speaking on the Boko Haram issue and the coming national confab, Aturu said, “many of the foot soldiers of Boko Haram are youth who should either be in schools or industries. But the question is: where are the schools and the industries?
“For some people the only avenue for survival is by way of insurgency, while for some others it is a case of the devil finding jobs for the idle. The national conference is only going to exacerbate the conditions that led to Boko Haram insurgency in the first place. “It is a waste of resource and time. Serious conferences are not organised the way they are organising the so-called national confab. To stop Boko Haram, create more jobs, try corrupt officials and jail them and of course abolish oil blocs. Make sure that no one earns less than N50,000 and no one earns more than N250,000. Ban importation of generators and then some of the fellows who go about thinking they own this country will have a rethink,” he added.
– This Day