Following the ruling of an Abuja High Court granting the request of the Department of State Services (DSS) granting them right to hold convener of #RevolutionNow, Omoyele Sowore for 45 days, Afenifere, the Yoruba social political organization has said that it views with great concern the 45-day detention without trial granted the DSS.
This is even as the Committee for the Defence of Human Rights (CDHR) Lagos State Branch, has called for the immediate and unconditional release of Sowore, who was also the presidential candidate of the AAC in the just concluded 2019 general election.
Reacting to the court ruling Afenifere in a release by its National Publicity Secretary, Yinka Odumakin, said the order represents a new phase in the orchestrated conscription of the democratic space in Nigeria.
We are aware of that obnoxious provision in the Terrorism Act, but it can never assume superiority over the Constitution which stipulates that a citizen cannot be detained for more than 48 hours before being charged to court.
According to them, “Sowore was arrested before he could commit an offence and the DSS seems to want to go shopping for evidence to prosecute him .
“Having failed to allow him to commit the offense before he was peremptorily arrested ,the DSS should free Sowore or charge him to court so the judicial process can take its course.
“As it is, he is only being held illegally using the legal process. Our advice to government is that it should understand and act in conformity with the democratic tenets in dealing with the rights of Nigerians.”
Insisting that Sowore should be set free without the delay, the CDHR in a statement signed by its State Chairman, Comrade Alex Omotehinse, said, “The information reaching us that Mr. Sowore Omoyele was arrested at about 1:00am on Saturday 3rd August, 2019 in his apartment and whisked away to an unknown destination.
“The information reveal that the abductors of Sowore were men of the Department of State Security Services (DSS) who invaded his apartment with four (4) trucks with mask and that during the invasion of Sowore’s residence his car was crush by the abductors and they also collected the mobile phone of Sowore’s son that was with his father during the invasion.
“It was reported that Sowore has been rendered incommunicado as all his mobile phones have been seized by the abductors from the office of the DSS.
“Sowore’s arrest must be in connection to its plan #REVOLUTIONNOW protest slated to be kick started on Monday 5th of August 2019.
We must remind this Buhari Government that the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended gives Sowore or any other Nigerian right to protest and freedom of expression with right to lawful assembly.
Meanwhile, if Sowore arrest is because of the plan protest, why can’t they wait till the day of protest, or why are they in a hurry?
“We need to remind Buhari what brought him to office maybe he must have forgotten so quickly, that it was Peoples Revolution from 2014 to 2015 that led to his emergence as the President of Nigeria.
“During the last administration, led by his Excellency Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan Nigerians protested against his government day and night, but Jonathan never prevented nor arrested anybody for protesting against his government.
“The President must be called to order by the National Assembly and he must know that this is a democratic government not military government,” the statement said.