The Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, on Thursday, insisted that the Southwest security outfit, Operation Amotekun, is illegal and unknown to the Nigerian Constitution. The minister said in a statement issued by his Special Assistant on Media, Dr Umar Gwandu, that no amount of sentiments would make the Federal Government abandon the path of rule of law in running the country’s affairs. Malami issued the statement a few minutes before Vice President Yemi Osinbajo met with the six South-West governors to resolve the crises trailing the establishment of the Amotekun.
He said: “No amount of effort to hide the truth will work. People could be carried away by sentimental or emotional inclinations, but the truth remains apparently palpable.
“The bottom line is that the current Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria does not accommodate the formation of regional security architecture. This is a fact which is indisputable and undeniable. Mr. Falana was prevaricating and circumlocuting using evasive techniques when he was asked by the media to justify the presence of lacuna within the law which could establish or protect the concept of regionalism in any operation in the country.
“This arrangement called Amotekun is not backed by any law neither at the State nor at the Federal Government level. Amotekun, therefore, remains unconstitutional and illegal as already indicated. The Federal Government appreciates that legally-minded Nigerians have started to eschew emotions by offering legal comments on the matter as against being carried away by other inclinations.
“The Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice is committed to the rule of law and a constitutional democratic Federal Republic of Nigeria.”
At the meeting which was attended by Malami and the Inspector-General of the Police, Mohammed Adamu, the federal government and the governors agreed that necessary legal instruments would be put in place by each of the states to give legal backing to the Amotekun and address all operational issues on the initiative. However, the AGF has not withdrawn his statement on the illegality of the security network at the time of filing this report. Vanguard