…fingers Atiku as patron of unpatriotic elements
…court gives DSS nod to detain Sowore for 45 days
By Moses Ajayi
The All Progressives Congress (APC) on Thursday called on Nigerians to reject what it described as toxic messages and criminal antics of some individuals and partisans who have embarked on a campaign of calumny against the government and are calling for a forceful takeover of government.
National Publicity Secretary of the party, Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu who disclosed this in a statement also asked Nigerians to beware of such individuals describing them as cowards and enemies of Nigeria.
The statement read in part: “The recent arrest of Mr. OmoyeleSowore by the Department of State Services (DSS) must be seen for what it is — a legal and timely action by our security services to protect our democracy and protect the country and its citizens against any action that threatens our collective peace and safety.
“Predictably, some desperate individuals, sore losers, and their sympathisers are acting in vain trying to pull wool over the eyes of Nigerians. Of course, the disgruntled presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alh. AtikuAbubakar is expectedly the patron and cheerleader of the unpatriotic elements who would rather bring our country down for being rejected at the polls.
“The desperate attempt to politicise a legitimate action by the security agencies and futile effort to spread falsehood to create chaos in the country are clearly irresponsible actions. We call on Nigerians to look at the issue of Sowore’s arrest dispassionately devoid of the skewed narratives and sentiments being propagated by these individuals.
“Sowore arrived the country recently and openly threatened a revolution against a constitutionally recognised and legitimate government. Should the DSS and other security services have dismissed the declaration and the underlying implications as a non- issue? No intelligence/security agency worth its calling takes issues like this with levity.
“From elections to governance and general conduct, the President MuhammaduBuhari-led administration has demonstrated its adherence and defence of the rule of law over politics and sundry interests.
“Again, on the safety of Nigerians, the current government has been decisive in addressing any action that threatens the country’s unity, peace and our democracy. Sowore’s arrest is another testament to our unshaken resolve in this regard.
“The right to a civil protest is a given, however it should not be construed to mean the same thing as a revolution to forcibly take over government. This makes it necessary to put the act of a revolution in context, at least by the proclamation made by Sowore and his co-travelers. Revolution means to forcibly overthrow a government through rebellion, revolt, insurrection, mutiny, uprising, insurgency, coup.
“Nigeria is not a banana republic, we are a country with a democratically-elected government, governed by laws. Our laws are clear on Sowore’s actions. It is treason. No one should be allowed to get away with any attempt to destabilize this country.
“We must remind ourselves that the same Sowore who attempts to lead a revolution had a legal opportunity during the 2019 Presidential election as a candidate to sell his governace ideas, if any, to the electorate. He failed woefully in that attempt, coming a distant sixth with 33,953 votes compared to the winner, President Muhammadu Buhari, who polled over 15 million votes.
“Sowore and some of his co-losers have now resorted to an illegal and misguided plot to destabilize the country. Their plan is dead on arrival.
“We reiterate that our laws are clear on all criminalities and Nigerians expect that the enforcement of relevant laws should apply to every Nigerian, irrespective of class and status. This government would not be found wanting where it is required to take decisive actions.
“Finally, the effects of instability being championed by these cowards and enemies of Nigeria are disastrous. The same proponents of a forceful takeover will be the first to flee the country with their loved ones while the ordinary Nigerian suffers the disastrous consequences.
Meanwhile a Federal High Court in Abuja has granted the request by the Department of State Services (DSS) to further detain the convener of #RevolutionNow, OmoyeleSowore for 45 days pending the conclusion of its investigation.
JusticeTaiwoTaiwo, in a ruling on Thursday on an ex-parte motion by the DSS, said he would allow the agency to detain him for 45 days in the first instance, which could be renewed upon an application, to enable the DSS complete its investigation.
He said the 45 days will begin from Friday, to end on September 21 when the DSS will be at liberty to re-apply for a detention permit, should it fail to conclude its investigation at the expiration of the first 45 days.
In the motion ex-parte brought by the DSS, under Section 27(1) of the Terrorism (Prevention
Amendment) Act, the agency accused Sowore of engaging in acts of terrorism.
Counsel to DSS,Agbadua, who led ShimanaAzer, while arguing the motion on Tuesday, tendered two digital versatile discs (DVDs), one of which contained recording of Sowores meeting with Nnamdi Kanu (of the proscribed Indigenous People of BiafraIPOB).
The second DVD contained an interview where Sowore was said to have disclosed that members of the equally proscribed Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) were going to join forces with him to bring down the Nigerian government.
But in the ruling on Thursday, Justice Taiwo noted that he has read the written submissions of the applicant and seen the DVDs attached to the application as exhibits.
He said that the use of the word may in Section 27(1) of the Terrorism (Prevention Amendment) Act gives the court the discretion to decide whether or not the request for detention should be granted, adding that the facts presented by the applicant are allegations against the respondent, which must be proved at the appropriate time and place.
However, one of the legitimate duty and function of the applicant is to investigate the facts alleged, for the purpose of taking appropriate action thereafter, of either prosecuting the respondent if the evidence warrants, or to discharge the allegations.