The Igbo Leaders of Thought, an organisation of Igbo leaders, has berated the Chairman of the now rested Presidential Advisory Committee on the proposed National Dialogue, Senator Femi Okunrounmu, over his media attacks on legal luminary and leader of the group, Prof. Ben Nwabueze (SAN).
In a statement issued in Awka, Anambra State capital on Friday, the group said Okunrounmu’s “vituperation on Nwabueze was uncalled for”.
The statement was signed by Mr. Elliot Uko, the Deputy Secretary of the Igbo Leaders of Thought.
Okunrounmu had at a press briefing held at his private residence in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital on Wednesday, referred to Nwabueze as “Mr. Know It All” while reacting to the position of the Igbo Leaders of Thought on the proposed national dialogue, stating that Nwabueze would always try to discredit a project or policy that he is not put in charge of.
The statement said, “Calling Nwabueze “Mr. Know it All” and alleging that the eminent constitutional lawyer disparages ‘anything he is not in charge of’ is a very weak attempt to divert public attention from the grave issues Igbo Leaders of Thought, led by our great leader, Nwabueze, raised.
“Neither the Igbo Leaders of Thought nor Nwabueze raised any issues with the person of our respected Senator Okunrounmu.
“What we said is that the report of PAC falls short of the expeditions of Nigerians who desire a genuine national conference of ethnic nationalities.”
The statement reiterated the position of the Igbo Leaders of Thought, which called for the creation of a new peoples’ constitution as against the purported recommendation of the committee that the existing one should be amended; the inclusion of all ethnic nationalities at the conference; and that the findings and conclusions of the conference should not be passed to the National Assembly for approval but rather should be subjected to a referendum.
It also said, “The National Assembly should pass an enabling law to legalise the National Conference as inherent powers of the President has been successfully challenged in several courts in the past”.