Allow Nigerians to exercise their political liberty and rights by Alphonso Olasumbo

President Buhari mocks London resume or resign protesters"says I hope they are not stuck there" (Aug 25 2017)
 President Muhammadu Buhari says he hopes the protesters who came to Abuja house in London during his medical vacation are not stuck in UK.
    The President returned to the country hours after the protesters held a vigil outside the place where Buhari stayed during his 103days medical vacation in the UK.
    During a meeting with the the governors at the presidential villa on Friday Buhari wondered if those who are stuck there with brexit have weighed their implications with regards to ownership of properties and payment of of tax.He said if those Nigerians sell off their property in the UK,they should bring the proceeds back to Nigeria because "we need it badly here".
"In fact, some groups in London came and Sang the national anthem and asked that I should go back home"Buhari said
   "I hope who went there are not stuck there,they will come back and join us. Those that are stuck there with the bretix I hope they have weighed the implications that it won't affect them, I hope when they sell their property there,they would bring some of it here,we need it badly here"(
This is the response to the action of the London protesters as they kept vigil in front of the Abuja house in London demanding that the President resume his office or resign.
Komaa mynofu spoke at a public comment portion held by the board of education of right ownership high in mattoson illinics. After some minutes he criticized some school officials by name.At that point,the President of the board of education ordered that mnyofu microphone be silenced and that a security guard stopped him from speaking.
     Mnyofu sued the board of education and its President in federal court allerging that they violated his First Amendment free speech rights by prohibity . He contended that the board unconstitutionally restricted speech based on content
     The board filed a motion to dismiss arguing that they could channel complaints of school officials to a uniform grievance procedure. The defiants also argued that the board president was entitled to qualified immunity, a doctrine that protects government officials from liabilities unless they violate clearly established law.
        U S district court judge Thomas M Durkin of the Northern District said that there was a reasonable likelihood that the school board meetings are designated public forums and the restriction on Mnyofu's speech was content discrimination.
       On the question of qualified immunity, the judge also ruled solidly in Mnyofu's favour " The right to criticize public officials is clearly established. "He wrote in Mnyofu vs Board of Education RichTownship High School District 227." Additionally, the right to speak at public forums of free-content based restrictions clearly established.
        The First Amendment protects the right to criticize public officials. In 1931, The justice Hugo Black expressed it eloquently in Bridges vs California, when he wrote "it is a prized American privilege to speak one's mind though not always with perfect good taste in all public institutions.
I ask "Don't Nigerians have such Rights?
President Buhari's speech after his 103days leave of absence in a meeting with the governors at the presidential villa Abuja. His response to the action of the protesters in front of the Abuja house in London shoes his inflexibility , lack of a large heart and traces of military dictatorship curbed only by democracy.
   There is the issue of political liberty of individuals which include the rights of individuals to vote, stand as candidate for election,equal eligibility for government office and of course the right of citizens to criticize the government.
   The political liberty of individuals to criticize the government is based on the right of individual speech, publication and membership of associations. In a democratic setting, individuals are encouraged to criticize government constructively, contributing in the decision making of the country. A peaceful protest has long been identified and used as an effective tool of constructive criticism.
      The preamble to the 1999 constitution unmistakeably set the tone27 by dedicating itself to promote"good government and welfare of all persons on the principles of freedom, equality and justice".
        Chapter ii, chapter iv of the 1999 constitution guarantees a catalogue of enforceable fundamental human rights. The fundamental human rights guaranteed under chapter iv are essentially civil and political rights guaranteed in major international human rights instruments. The civil and political rights form the bedrock of the First generation Rights. These rights are libertarian in character as they relate to the sanctity of the individual and his rights within sociopolitical milieu in which he is located. The right to seek to protect the individual whether alone or as a group against the abuse of power especially by political authority..
     Since what is involved is comparable with the Covenant in Civil and political rights 1966, it will suffice to simply enumerate these rights without amplification as follows: * the right to life * right to dignity of human person * right to personal liberty *right to fair hearing * right to private and family life * right to freedom of thought , conscience and religion * right to peaceful assembly and association *right to freedom of movement * right to freedom from discrimination and * right to acqo and own immovable property anywhere in Nigeria.

His speech in response to the protest should have shown Hus flexibility and possession of a large heart which is able to accommodate the criticism of the citizens of a very large nation with so diverse a culture.
His response should have reflected his ability to make use of the criticism of Nigerians to oil the wheels of good governance rather than sound saucy such as was featured in response at the Presidential villa
  I believe that protests and criticism of government activities by individuals and groups serve as a force to propel government officials forward and keep them on their toes at all times in their bid to give to the citizens of the nation the good governance for which they are elected.
     I implore the London protesters and other critics home and abroad not to be demoralized but to continue to criticize government activities constructively in order to facilitate good governance in the Nation as their protest actually yielded the desired result since the President returned to Nigeria merely hours after their vigil or should we say protest in front of Abuja house .
    It is also worthy of note that the President's health is linked to that of the Nation and his presence amongst his people who gave him his mandate is not an issue to be handled with levity. This is evident in the reaction of Nigerians as they trooped out in their number to welcome the President back to the soil of our fatherland.
    Kudos to the London protesters, more grease to your elbows.

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written by  © Alphonso Olasumbo, 2017.

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