Governors, Traditions rulers and Ministers of South West extraction in the Federal Government met on Sunday November 8, 2020 with a Presidential delegation in Lagos gave the Federal Government nod to curtail the use of social media by a “regime of checks and gate keeping”.
The leaders of the South West also agreed with Prof Ibrahim Agboola Gambari led Presidential delegation to “use the instrumentality of existing laws and those regulations bench-marked from other countries to provide safeguards against the spread of fake news. 2015 Cyber Act will also be fully used”.
The monarchs also back the call for restructuring of the country and urge government to re-open boarders to enhance better trade activities.
The communique after the meeting was signed on their behalf by Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu, governor of Ondo State, and Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, the Ooni of Ife.
Below is the 13 point communique:
Communique issued today (Sunday 8th November 2020) after a meeting of Governors and Traditional Rulers of South West States and Presidential delegation, including Ministers from the South West*
- We express appreciation to Mr. President and his administration on the responsiveness to the initial demands of the ENDSARS demonstrators and for his firm handling of the aftermaths of the protest.
- We endorse the call by traditional rulers for regular consultations with state governors and federal authorities on challenges facing the state and for appropriate recognition of their role in the Constitution.
- The security architecture of the country requires adjustment to adequately address the threats and realities of insecurity in the country. There should be more police presence in communities in the South west states.
- While there are legitimate concerns contained in the initial ENDSARS movement, these have been hijacked by criminals and other elements with ulterior and negative forces and degenerated into anarchy.
- There is a need to undertake preventive actions aimed at prevention of repeat of what happened in the country following the ENDSARS demonstrators. Security needs to be strengthened in all states.
- We wish to encourage the Nigeria Police by responding to their needs and appeal to them to do more to protect lives and properties and enhance security all over the country.
- We call for specific measures and proposals to repair damage done to the physical infrastructure and economic assets of the South West.
- Review of reports of constitutional conferences including the 2014 National Conference and implement some of the recommendations especially with reference to security, economy, equal treatment for citizens all over the country.
- We believe that the prolonged closure of the border has caused economic difficulties and should be re-examined to alleviate problems of the people in the border communities and prices of some essential commodities. There is a need to review the closure and permit resumption of economic and trading activities.
- A comprehensive programme that addresses youth employment and empowerment should be prioritized. Closer coordination and complementarity between the states and the Federal Government. In this regard, the curricular of tertiary institutions should be reviewed, with emphasis placed on skills acquisition and entrepreneurship.
- We recognize the damaging and negative impact of fake/false news and worry about its destructive and dangerous potency of fake news. We call on the federal government to use the instrumentality of existing laws and those regulations bench-marked from other countries to provide safeguards against the spread of fake news. the 2015 Cyber Act will also be fully used.
- The Federal Government should ensure that technology is used effectively for the advancement of the Nigerian Security and not its destruction by working with the technology cum social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc. The regime of checks and gate keeping should be fully employed.
- We urge that every effort should be made to resolve the impasse between ASUU and the federal government so that students can return to school in earnest.