Nobel Laureate Professor Wole Soyinka has condemned the federal government for describing the newly launched South-West security outfit codenamed ‘Amotekun‘ as illegal and unrecognisable under the law.
Concise News reports that the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, had described the outfit as illegal, saying security remains the exclusive preserve of the federal government.
He maintained that “the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) has established the Army, Navy, and Airforce, including the Police and other numerous paramilitary organisations for the purpose of the defence of Nigeria”.
According to Malami consequently, no other authority at the state level, whether the executive or legislature has the legal authority over defence.
But Soyinka, at a press conference in Lagos on Thursday, said that he refuses to believe that any serious government will raise any objection to this kind of initiative, adding that the security outfit has come to stay.
The novelist also expressed shock that the federal government could take such a position.
“Our responsibility as a citizen is to take actions against events, phenomenon which militate against our existence, security, productivity and dignity as human beings,” he said.
“This has been a result of collective consciousness by people of this region. These governors met and they came up with this solution, Amotekun. Now, some people who have been sleeping all this time, taking belated actions in many directions, who watched the citizens of this nation decimated, villages wiped out, farmers chased off their land. They are now coming out to tell us that this initiative is illegal, unconstitutional. I think they should go back to sleep.
“I prefer to believe that the government itself has not spoken. I refuse to believe that any serious government will raise any objection to this kind of initiative. Amotekun has come to stay.
“Amotekun is only a part of the story. It should not be the only solution to insecurity. We should move from Amotekun to Awosikun. In other words, we should start thinking in terms of how to feed our own people.”