A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Chief Afe Babalola, has counseled the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, to instead of pronouncing operation Amotekun illegal, challenge the six South West governors in court over the formation of the joint security network as a more legal approach in tackling the issue.
While speaking to newsmen in Ado Ekiti yesterday, he said the federal government should be the one to approach the court and seek redress considering that it did not act and made its position known until after Amotekun was launched by the South West state governors
He said “In my opinion, the act has been done, Amotekun had been launched, let them go on. Anybody that feels what they have done is wrong can go to court. They will meet the governors there. All the governors would have to do is to show them the law, the constitution, sections 24, 40, 45. That is it.
“What the state governors have done is legal, so why should they bother? Let the FG try to go to court. It is a case that must fail if they go to court. They have not set up a parallel police outfit. No. the constitution says it is your duty to protect the interest of yourself and others and join together in doing so. The case will be so easy to win.
“The Amotekun outfit is a protective and supportive outfit established by the governors of the Southwest. It has its roots in the 1999 Constitution and the previous constitutions before it – 1960, 1963,” he said.
He further argued that “Section 24 of the constitution provides that ‘it shall be the duty of every citizen to make positive and useful contribution to the advancement, progress and well-being of the community where he resides. Well-being means security of life and property. How many Nigerians realise that they have a duty to assist and to protect the interest of the community and themselves?
“Section 40 goes further that ‘every person shall be entitled to assemble freely and associate with other persons, and in particular, he may form or belong to any political party, trade union or any other association for the protection of his interests’.
“The Amotekun outfit has its roots in the constitution. It is constitutional, it is legal, it is proper”.