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Water bill an obnoxious, draconian, imperialistic anti-people’s legislation —HURIWA

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The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has described the Water Resources Bill as an “obnoxious, draconian and imperialistic anti-people’s legislation.

HURIWA in a statement issued on Monday which was signed by its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko and Miss. Zainab Yusuf, Director; National Media Affairs cautioned against the proposed law.

The group warned that the bill will cause another civil war in Nigeria and also condemned the current National Assembly for their penchant in introducing “anti-people’s legislation, with emphasis on the reintroduction of the Bill On Natural Resources aimed at stripping Southern Littoral states of their control of Water Resources.”

The statement by HURIWA reads thus in part: “Evidently, the legislative and regulatory agenda of the present NASS as illustrated in several of their proposed legislations appear to be aimed at attacking freedom of speech, civil space and to abrogate property and economic rights.

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“Just like the Companies and Allied Maters Act, 2020 (CAMA 2020), an otherwise necessary and important legislation that has become divisive, the National Water Resources bill has also strayed into our delicate fault-lines and lost in the brackish waters of Nigeria’s recurrent political criticisms.

“The president should be worried that almost all his important policies have continued to energize certain concealed instincts in our society. And that Nigerians now appear incapable of having any decent conversation without resorting to ethnicity and religion.

“All factors considered, therefore, this National Water Resources bill is obnoxious, draconic and imperialistic. Conceived in a time of mutual suspicions, promoted by divisive interests and opposed by the current politics of ethno-religious distrust in the country and should be jettisoned.

“This bill on water resources if not discontinued could result in civil war if not now, then sooner rather than later because it is not possible to take over the natural water resources of the indigenous people in the South and hand them over to strangers under the guise of the central government controlling these water resources,” the statement concluded.

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