Amọtẹkun: Why it is here to stay and may end up being the defining issue on the continued corporate existence of Nigeria

Western Nigeria Security Network (Amọtẹkun)
CC™ Viewpoint - By Editor-in-Chief

Nigeria is a great nation. In the history of the world, there has never been such abundance of natural wealth, talent, ingenuity, resourcefulness and dogged resiliency assembled within the borders of one nation. 

Nigerians are an extremely resourceful, prideful and accomplished people but one thing, yes that one main thing, the key ingredient that serves as the penultimate fulcrum for moving a nation to the next level, has always been missing...... LEADERSHIP!

Leadership is and will always be key to the success of an organization or a people. True leadership is equipped with vision, empathy, compassion and a servant spirit. It is the glaring lack of leadership or the rudderless nature of it that has brought Nigerians, the Yoruba of Southwestern Nigeria in particular, to the realization that they must take their future into their own hands. The central government of President Muhammadu Buhari has essentially abdicated its responsibility under the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to safeguard lives and property within the borders of the country. 

Enter then now Amọtẹkun (Cheetah or Panther), the Western Nigeria Security Network established by the six states in the South-west, for the purpose of self-defence and self-protection in the face of unending attacks by criminals, especially the terrorist Fulani Herdsmen responsible for ethnic cleansing across much of Western Nigeria, Eastern Nigeria and the Middle-Belt. This would not have been necessary if President Buhari and the Nigerian Service Chiefs (most of whom are from Buhari's Fulani ethnicity) had not consistently turned a blind eye to the persistent killings of innocent citizens mostly women and children by the rampaging Fulani Herdsmen; a group that has been designated as one of the five most deadly terrorist organizations in the world behind only Boko Haram and ISIS. 

The response to the establishment of Amọtẹkun has been as expected with the Attorney General of the Federation (of Fulani extraction) and various Northern leaders and organizations including Miyetti Allah (essentially the silent partners and benefactors of the Fulani Herdsmen) voicing their disapproval of the security unit. The hypocrisy of the Northern leaders can obviously be seen with the fact that they created the Hisbah and other community policing and paramilitary outfits to counter the trend of insecurity in their region, but then have a problem with a parallel existence of such outfits in other parts of the country. 

Perhaps, there is an inordinate reason for their objection since the law is actually on the side of the creation of such units with a view to having them also work in conjuction with the police and the Nigerian Armed Forces. It is no secret that the Nigerian Army under the current Chief of Army Staff, General Buratai has been found wanting when it comes to protecting and safeguarding the territorial integrity of Nigeria. 

The Nigerian Army has also been accused of sectional/ethnic bias. The high-handed treatment of IPOB and Shia group members in comparison to that of the rampaging Fulani Herdsmen is evidence that this current administration has a clandestine internal colonization agenda. 

The fact remains that the precedent of the implementation of full fledged Sharia by the Northern Nigeria State of Zamfara (with 11 other Northern States then following suit) gives credence and legal muscle to the creation of Amọtẹkun, as the latter is an extension of Yoruba Customary Law as entrenched in the Nigerian Constitution. Furthermore, Chapter 1 Section 4 [6,7(a)(c)] of the Nigerian Constitution states as follows:

(6) The legislative powers of a State of the Federation shall be vested in the House of Assembly of the State.
(7) The House of Assembly of a State shall have power to make laws for the peace, order and good government of the State or any part thereof with respect to the following matters, that is to say:-
(a) any matter not included in the Exclusive Legislative List set out in Part I of the Second Schedule to this Constitution.
(c) any other matter with respect to which it is empowered to make laws in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution.
Furthermore, Chapter 1 Section 5 [2 and 3] of the same Constitution vests executive and legislative powers to create laws and maintain order within States of the Nigerian Federation in the hands of the constituted bodies of that State in as much as they ensure a good faith synergy with the Nigerian Constitution.

I will defer further to the legal luminaries that abound in Western Nigeria and other parts of Nigeria, but on the surface of it, the Attorney-General of the Federation is playing with fire by putting his ethnic and personal feelings above the good of the nation. If Amọtẹkun is illegal, then Hisbah and every other community security outfit (including the Civilian Joint Task Force working with the military against Boko Haram in Northern Nigeria) is illegal as well and should be proscribed with immedate effect.

There are those in the Southwest who are supposedly waiting for the "approval" of Bola Tinubu on this matter. The truth is that much like Nnamdi Kanu's opinions do not matter here (as he has an inordinate agenda that Amọtẹkun is no part of), that of Tinubu should not, as the latter is prepared to mortgage the future of the Yoruba race for his own personal ambition. That is just who he is.

In concluding, let me state categorically and without equivocation that Amọtẹkun is here to stay and any attempt to outlaw the outift will be steeped in unconstitutional chicanery.

According to the Constitution, the Federal Republic of Nigeria shall be a State based on the principles of democracy and social justice. Furthermore, sovereignty belongs to the people of Nigeria from whom government through the Constitution derives all its powers and authority. In so much as the Federal Government of Nigeria has abdicated its primary responsibility of ensuring the security and welfare of the people, that power then naturally devolves to the States to ensure that the security and welfare of the citizens within their domain is assured.

The blood of the women, children and men that have been shed in their thousands, with the heinous acquiescence of this current administration, will be on the heads of the Western Nigeria leaders that accede to the unconstitutional demands of an over-reaching central government with an inordinate agenda.