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The Conference Of Nigeria Parties (CNPP) and a coalition of civil society groups under their umbrella association, the Coalition Of National Civil Society Organisations (CNCSOs), have called on “President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to prove to Nigerians that he is, indeed, a democrat by ending the All Progressives Congress (APC) invented script of detention without trial, using bogus allegations to keep suspected political enemies in detention indefinitely.”
The political parties and civil society organisations then urged President Tinubu “not to give detained suspended Governor of the Cental Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, the Col. Sambo Dasuki treatment by former President Muhammadu Buhari administration.
According to a statement jointly signed by the Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the CNPP, Comrade James Ezema, and the National Secretary of the CSOs, Alhaji Ali Abacha, “playing the same APC card against Emefiele will clearly portray the President in bad light after pledging to uphold the rule of law in his June 12 message to Nigerians.”
They noted that “detaining the suspended CBN Governor for over a month without trial, only to charge him for illegal possession of firearms and ammunition at a time the Court has already ordered his release is totally against the principles of the rule of law, fairness, and justice that Mr. President has preached since May 29.
“The charges against Emefiele followed the same old tricks of the APC government, which was invented in 2015, to detention citizens without trial.
“Recall that Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd), the former National Security Adviser to former former President Goodluck Jonathan, was arrested in 2015 and the APC government charged with the offences bordering on illegal possession of firearms and ammunition.
“Sambo Dasuki was detained without trial and in September 2015 when the court granted him bail after he was arraigned on alleged crime, the APC government rejected his bail.
“Just like in the Godwin Emefiele case, the DSS had claimed that it had on July 6, 2015 found in Dasuki’s Asokoro residence in Abuja five Tavor assault rifles, one macro Uzi with serial number 60244 (rifle), 20 magazines (ammunitions), one packet of MOD (Ministry of Defence) AP9 calibre gun 9mm Luger with no: 033373, among other items.
“The APC government in April 2017 re-arraigned Dasuki for stealing $2bn, illegal possession of firearms and ammunition all in the bid to still continue to keep the former NSA in DSS custody.
“Such draconian inventions, including refusal to obey valid court orders, have been found to be politically motivated and created to incarcerate perceived political enemies indefinitely.
“If President Tinubu is truly a democrat as he has continued to preach, his government must not adopt the APC’s eight-year-old brutal actions against suspected political enemies.
“We have watched with dismay how the Tinubu administration has been testing the undemocratic and anti-rule of law inventions clamping individuals into the DSS dungeons without trial.
“For instance, the case of Godwin Emefiele and that of the suspended Chairman of Economic And Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa, are bad records of detention without trial any democratic President should be remembered for”, the CNPP and the CSOs said.