A Pro-Democracy group, Concerned Nigerians, have released a statement saying that as the 2019 general elections draw closer, many critics of President Buhari will be framed up and possibly sent to jail.
The statement reads:
“We condemn the rearrest and re-arraignment of Senator representing Kogi West senatorial district, Mr. Dino Melaye on a stretcher for alleged criminal conspiracy, damage to government property, attempted suicide and escape from lawful custody after he was granted bail by a competent court of jurisdiction.
The arrest, victimization and intimidation of people perceived to be critics of government by the Nigerian Police must be condemned by all and sundry. What makes democracy robust is when citizens can freely express themselves, oppose the government and hold public officials accountable without being hounded by the government.
The Buhari led government of Nigeria must be reminded that power is transient and he will someday account for every atrocity done against the Nigerian people. The latest clampdown on critics of the government using the instrumentality of the state is nothing but political witch-hunting and shameless display of intolerance.
We are deeply concerned about the new tactics being deployed by the government to frame critics up by cajoling hardened criminals to make confessional statement of being sponsored by opposition leaders as in the case of Shehu Sani and Dino Melaye, both of whom are serving senators and critics of the government.
Those opposing the government must braze up for similar treatment or worse as what we are witnessing now reminds us of the dark days of Abacha.
This government has failed to fulfill its most basic function of protecting lives and property of Nigerians.
The government should be more concerned in protecting Nigerians in Benue, Kaduna, Taraba, Zamfara, Adamawa and many other parts of Nigeria than this energy they are expending in fighting the opposition and critics.
We are amazed by the level of impunity and disregard for democratic best practices that is being carried out by the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris who has constantly disregarded the National Assembly in pursuance of a personal vendetta against Dino Melaye.
The Inspector General of Police can not be greater than the National Assembly.
If the IGP is tired of being a policeman, he should resign and obtain APC membership card so Nigerians will know that he is working for his party and not the Nigerian people.
Nigerians, most especially the opposing voices must fight fiercely to make our nascent democracy work.
Moreover, we are calling on the international community and interest groups to take cognizance of the Nigerian government’s totalitarian attitude and clampdown on dissenting voices.
Theophilus Abu Agada
National Publicity Secretary
FOR: Concerned Nigerians
A Pro-Democracy Group in Nigeria dedicated to the rule of law, good governance and anti-corruption”.