A former governor of Kaduna State, Umar Dangiwa, and human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, have distanced themselves from a new political party named National Consultative Front.
The party was announced on Wednesday by a group of politicians, labour leaders and human rights activists with the aim of driving reforms in the country.
Umar was listed alongside a former President of the Nigerian Bar Association, Olisa Agbakoba; a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Ghali Na’abba; a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank, Obadiah Mailafia; Falana (SAN), Obi Ezekwesili, amongst others.
In seperate statements on Friday, the two men said they were not members of the group.
Umar said, “My attention has been drawn to a widely circulated story that I am part of the promoters of a new political movement known as the National Consultative Front.
“This is not true. I was never consulted and I am not part of the National Consultative Front.”
In his own reaction, Falana said, “My attention has been drawn to the launching of the National Consultative Forum led by some notable Nigerians.
“I wish to commend all efforts aimed at creating an alternative platform with the potential of lifting the long suffering people of Nigeria from economic and political stupor. I also recognise the fact that some of the promoters of the NCF are people who are motivated by the common good. Many of them have made profound sacrifices to make Nigeria a better place to live.
“However, I observe that my name has been mentioned as one of the pillars behind this initiative. While I appreciate the concern of the leadership of the new group to enlist my support, I wish to say that at no time have I been consulted and neither did I attend the meeting where the forum was launched.
“I appreciate the almost desperate situation progressive Nigerians find themselves in the bid to save Nigeria from what looks like an imminent shipwreck. This might have informed the haste with which many honest and dedicated hands find themselves.
“This clarification should not be conceived as opposition to all honest efforts designed to rescue Nigeria from the claws of abject poverty and increasing loss of hope.
“At the approriate time, we shall come before Nigerians to present the new platform which would be predicated upon pro-masses oriented anti-poverty programme, and hopefully the founders of the new intiative will be proud not to be left out.”