The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has written to President Muhammadu Buhari urging him to suspend the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) 2020, stating that it is dangerous to the “well-being of the Nigerian-state”.
The letter, signed by the president of the association, Samson Ayokunle, was stated that the government did not involve critical stakeholders and “various interest groups”.
It also stated that the Act was a danger to the country’s national interest.
The statement reads in part, “We consider the Act, as indeed, a complex of statecraft compendium, laden with issues that are grossly inimical to the national interest, security (- peace and stability), and overall wellbeing of the Nigerian-state.
“From the reactions of stakeholders and a cross-section of the Nigerian-state, it is apparent that the Act either did not receive input from the respective various interest groups or failed to accommodate their views, sundry concerns, and varying interests of the Nigerian people.
“Mr. President, from the foregoing, we are of the opinion that you should kindly issue the appropriate directives to suspend the implementation of CAMA 2020 and affirm a thorough reappraisal of the legislation that is in correlation with the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended), other extant legal and policy frameworks, the national economy, national security, national interest and the wellbeing of the Nigerian-state.”
Responding to the call for the suspension of CAMA, the Special Assistant to the President on Niger Delta Affairs and former National Assembly Presidential Liaison Officer, Ita Enang, said that the Act was not introduced to oppress the “Christian community or any religion nor any matter discriminatory against any class of persons in Nigeria.”
Enang said, “We want to declare that the Act does not target churches or religious bodies as wrongly assumed. For an illustration of this, I present a tabular form of the provisions of the 1990 Act which came into force on January 2, 1990, which after more than 30 years of operation has now been repealed and replaced by CAMA 2020.
“Hereunder are the comparative provisions in the two enactments to show particularly that the 2020 Act assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari has not introduced any matter oppressive to the Christian community or any religion nor any matter discriminatory against any class of persons in Nigeria.”