Buhari Urged to Reconsider Peace Corps Bill
President Muhammadu Buhari has been called upon to reconsider his position to withhold his assent to the Peace Corps of Nigeria Bill which was aimed at making the organization a statutory body of the Federal Government.
The President was urged to re-evaluate the importance of the bill to the Nigeria youths especially for the social; and productive engagement of the teeming youth in line with position of his government to create jobs and make life more meaningful for the youths.
National Commandant of the corps, Ambassador Dickson Akoh who made the call at a press conference in Abuja expressed the belief that the Presidency may have been misled into the decision to withhold assent to the bill.
Akoh insisted that contrary to the claim by the Presidency, the functions of the Peace Corps as captured in the bill did not in any way conflict with the function of Police or any other security agency.
He said that Peace Corps was absolutely civil in its own functions and was aimed at serving as arbiter of peace, youth volunteerism maintaining and sustaining a level information for any impending nefarious activity.
The Peace Corps boss further explained that the corps among others is to re-direct the creative but untapped potential to the socio-economic and political advancement of the nation.
According to him “there was never a time in the history of our dear country that the need for peace has become fiercely urgent like now. It is our ardent belief that the President may have been misled into the decision because of the untenable reasons”.
On the financial implications cited by the President to withhold assent, Akoh said that peace has never been costlier than crisis and that the price for peace is inestimable.
President Buhari had on Tuesday February 27 declined to give assent to the Peace Corps establishment Bill giving two reasons of financial scarcity and conflict with functions of Police.
Akoh however said “while we cannot question the wisdom of Mr. President, who possesses the prerogative power of assent, we find it quite unfortunate that it came at a time Nigeria urgently needed a huge dose of peace and security”.
“The functions of the Nigerian Peace Corps as succinctly captured in the Bill do not in any way conflict with that of the function of any existing security agencies but is absolutely civil, which is to serve as an arbiter of peace, youth volunteerism, maintaining and sustaining a level of pro-activeness, and courier of information for impending nefarious activities and plots that can lead to the breakdown of peace and order anywhere in Nigeria”.
“These functions, amongst others, also include genuine youth empowerment and redirecting their creative but untapped potential to the socio-economic and political advancement of the nation”.
“It would be recalled that as January this year, we were quite aware that these same agencies who opposed the passage of our Bill during the Public Hearing conducted by the Chambers of the National Assembly had conspired to forward a negative Security Report to the President with a view to derail his assent to the Bill”.
“The same individuals and organization clamped down on our officers and sealed off our offices, including the headquarters. The same individuals and organizations blatantly refused to comply with court judgment to unseal our offices”.
“Our esteem appreciation is hereby extended to all individuals, traditional institutions, government agencies, NGO’s, youth and students organizations, and vey importantly, the Distinguished Senators and Honorable Members of the National Assembly for their unequivocal support accorded our Organization until it is over”.
“As an organization that observes strict discipline, let me state that, the President’s withholding his assent tour bill notwithstanding, we will continue to have esteem confidence in Mr. President’s leadership of great country”.
“We however wish to passionately appeal to Mr. President to re-evaluate and reconsider his decision to withhold his assent to this all important Bill, if not for any reason, but for social and productive engagement of our teeming youths in line with his campaign promises”.