A University lecturer in the Department of Political Science at the University of Ilorin, Professor Hassan Saliu, has submitted that democratic system of government “still remains the best for Nigeria.”
However, Saliu blamed politicians on the practice of the system, saying “they have decided to practice it in their own ways.”
The University Don spoke on Saturday while making his submissions at a Maiden edition of Yusuf Ola-Olu Ali Media Roun-Table organised by the Nigerian Union of Journalists, (NUJ), Zone D, North Central held at NUJ Press Centre in Ilorin, Kwara State capital.
If democratic principles and practices are being adhered to, the don maintained that the system would work-out in Nigeria.
Accounting to him, “Democracy is not a bad system for Nigeria. But what we should be concerned about is its practice. Politicians in Nigeria have decided to do things in their own ways. When courts pronounce judgments and it is not being implemented, you cannot blame the system but the politicians. Democracy still best for us (Nigeria), but its practice needs to be strictly adhered to.”
In his address, the guest speaker who is also a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Law in the University of Ilorin, Professor Wahab Egbewole advocated true for independence of the judiciary for the members of the bench to perform their duties without fear of favour.
Speaking on the lecture titled: “Repositioning the Nigeria’s Judicial System for Sustainable Democratic Culture and Fundamental Human Rights,” Egbewole challenged the judiciary to be fearless and forthright in its stance and assert its independence by upholding the human rights of all not minding whose ‘ox is gored’.
The legal luminary submitted that judiciary should not be singled out of the systemic rot rather holistic approach should be made at repositioning the democratic system.
“The judiciary should take the bull by the horn, be forthright in its stance and assert its independence by upholding the human rights of all suspects before it irrespective of who is involved,” he said.
On the level of development Nigeria recorded since 1960, Egbewole argued that colonialism should not be blamed for the country’s failure at this stage, saying “They (colonial masters) have gone for good.”
In his submission, Editor of Blueprint Newspapers, Mallam Abdulrahaman Abdulrauf, who is a member of the panel of discussants, admitted that there are bad eggs and quacks in journalism like other professions and therefore called for proper education and re-orientation among members of the fourth estate of the realm.
The Speaker of Kwara State House of Assembly, Dr Ali Ahmad who is the Chairman of the occasion, commended the NUJ for organising what he called a thought-provoking discussion in honour of the legal giant.
Responding, the honouree, Yusuf Ali SAN who equally thanked the NUJ for honoring him, noted that a nation without viable press is dead.
The Vice President of the NUJ Zone D, Wilson Bako, and the Chairman of Kwara Council, Comrade Abiodun Abdulkareem said the event was organized as part of the union’s contribution to the society, noting that the honoree had been in the forefront of promoting rule of law in Nigeria.