From Godwin Tsa Abuja
Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice (AGF), Abubakar Malami (SAN) has denied reports that he forwarded a secret memo directing President Muhamamdu Buhari to suspend Chapter IV of the constitution which guarantees the fundamental rights of Nigerians and declare a state of emergency to curb rising insecurity.
Malami who described the report as “false and fictitious” asked members of the public to disregard it as “fabrications of anti-constitutional democratic stability in Nigeria.”
A media organisation had alleged that Malami had in a memo advised President Buhari that insecurity across Nigeria had reached a level that could no longer be checked by existing democratic techniques, saying only a state of emergency promulgated by the President can help return the country to tranquillity.
“The essence of declaration is to allow for suspension of constitutional and legal bureaucratic bottlenecks pertaining to matters of national security with particular regards to fundamental rights guaranteed under Chapter IV of the 1999 Constitution and processes and procedures relating to procurements, among others,” the attorney-general was quoted to have submitted.
But the AGF through his Special Assistant on Media and Public Relations, Dr. Umar Gwandu dismissed the report saying: “The attention of the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN) has been drawn to a false and fictitious report alleging that there was a secret memo emanating from the Office to the Presidency.The general public is hereby asked to disregard the media reports as fabrications of anti-constitutional democratic stability in Nigeria. Malami remains a true democrat who believes in rules of law and tenant of democracy and constitutional order.
“The Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice is a constitutionally recognised one with its role and responsibilities embedded in the constitution. It is antithetical to common sense to think that the holder of such coveted office as the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice will stoop to what was printed by the media. The Government does not operate in secrecy as it is not a clandestine operation. Hence, Malami discharges his constitutionally recognised mandates in compliance with principles of transparency, openness and accountability.”