The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has identified oppression and impunity as part of the major challenges facing Nigeria.
Saraki disclosed this on Tuesday in a series of tweets to commemorate the annual Democracy Day celebration.
“These are significant challenges we face, but with our current combined efforts, I believe that we will bring greater development to the country,” he said.
“These include abuse of office in a manner that suggests persecution and oppression of perceived enemies, stifling of free expression, undermining of democratic institutions, and impunity on the part of certain individuals who behave as though they are above the laws of the land.
“Today, uppermost in the minds of Nigerians is the question of insecurity. We must immediately find solutions to the security issues and ensure that we return to the regime of peace, safety of lives and property in all parts of our country,” he wrote.
Saraki warned Nigerians, especially those in public offices that history would not be fair to them if they allow their complacency to jeopardise democracy.
He asked them to speak out with strong voices on issues that constitute a danger to the nation’s democracy.
According to him, Nigeria cannot be celebrating Democracy Day without canvassing for caution on some recent negative developments in its polity, particularly as the people prepare for the 2019 general elections.
The lawmaker noted further that Nigerians have much to be thankful for as a nation, since the dawn of democracy on May 29, 1999.
He, however, asked the government and its people to remember that democracy is not just about elections.
The Senate President described it as a unity of purpose while being accountable when individuals are in positions of authority, saying it also involves the rule of law, following due process, as well as respecting and nurturing institutions.
He stressed that the leaders strive daily to deliver greater dividends of democracy to the citizenry by steadily improving the economy and fulfilling the aspiration of the people.
Saraki, on his part, promised that he would continue to advocate building up of Nigeria’s institutions while upholding ethics and values.