AMOTEKUN – Femi Falana, SAN, has stated that the Attorney General of the Federal Government has no powers to proscribe any group.
“The Attorney General of the Federal Government, Malami SAN, has no power whatsoever to proscribe any organisation in Nigeria,” he said.
Mr Falana made this comment while reacting to a statement from the Attorney General of the Federation, Mr. Abubakar Malami, stating that the newly launched ‘Operation Amotekun’ is illegal.
The Senior Advocate of Nigeria said:
With respect, Mr. Malami’s purported proscription of Amotekun is hypocritical and discriminatory on the grounds that the Civilian JTF operating in Yobe and Borno states is constituted by 26,000 well-armed volunteers who have been assisting the armed forces to combat terrorism in the northeast region.
Similarly, the governments of Kano and Zamfara states have established the Hisbar Commission. It is common knowledge that the HISBAH operatives in Zamfara state recently arrested a policeman who was alleged to have been caught in the company of three women.
The Lagos State government has equally established the Neighbourhood Watch to assist the Police and other security agencies in protecting the life and property of every person living in Lagos.
No doubt, section 214 of the Constitution stipulates that there shall be only one police force in Nigeria. But the federal government has breached the Constitution by setting up other police forces. For instance, the Nigerian Security and Defence Corps is another police force established by law.
The State Security Service is also a police force established by law. Its operatives are well-armed. They wear masks even in broad daylight. The federal government has also authorised the officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Offences Commission, Nigeria Customs Service, Nigeria Correctional Service, and other paramilitary agencies to bear arms.
To that extent, the federal government cannot stop any state from setting a security outfit. In fact, having lost control of the monopoly of violence to armed gangs in the various parts of the country the federal government lacks the legal, political and moral right to challenge security outfits set up by state governments and individuals to protect the lives and property of the people of Nigeria.
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