In a statement issued in Lagos on Sunday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said it does not matter how popular the public protests that led the military to make the change was, what happened in Egypt was a coup d’etat which must be condemned.
”Democracy remains the best form of government known to man, and in order to grow it, it must be nurtured. But if every time there are protests in a democracy, the military moves in to effect a change of government, then democracy will never grow.
”Democracy has some universal tenets, which include the fact that free and fair election is the only means of getting to power and the only way of losing it. This means that even if people make a wrong choice, they are stuck with it until the next elections, unless in countries where you have a recall mechanism. Some may describe this as a drawback, but there can be no other way if democracy is to be properly practised,” it said.
ACN said while many Britons and Americans disagreed with their governments over the Iraq war and held several public protests to vent their disappointment, that did not cause the military in both countries to push their democratically-elected governments out of power, as was the case in Egypt.
It also recalled that during former President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua’s illness, the party (ACN) and a number of civil society groups insisted that the constitution must be followed, as many in Yar’Adua’s inner caucus plotted endlessly for him to hold on to power, even when it became clear that he could no longer function effectively.
The party said while many in Egypt may not like the Muslim Brotherhood or be happy with the government of President Mohammed Morsi, the fact remains that they both won an election that was globally adjudged to be free and fair.
ACN hailed the African Union (AU) for suspending Egypt’s membership of the continental body in the wake of the coup, saying it shows that it (AU) is serious about the adherence to its Constitutive Act, which prohibits an unconstitutional change of government.
The party also said the Nigerian government did the right thing by promptly condemning the action of the Egyptian military and calling for the immediate restoration of democracy in the North African country.
It expressed the hope that Egyptians will allow democracy to thrive in their country by eschewing the kind of change recently brought about by their military at the expense of the country’s democratically-elected government.