Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan
Aare Onakakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams, has described the re-arrest of Omoyele Sowore, a few hours after his release by the Department of State Services (DSS), as a national tragedy, insisting that the conduct is a clear a departure from the democracy that activists and pro-democracy groups fought for.
The situation that played out at the court, before he was rearrested, according to him, indicated that Nigeria has purportedly lost its drift as a democratic nation.
He appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure an unconditional release of Sowore in order to redeem the image of the country on respect for human rights and rule of law.
Adams who spoke at the weekend, maintained that “what happened at the court, it reminded me of the dark era of the military; but ironically, the present government under President Muhammadu Buhari is likened to the military junta era of the late Sanni Abacha, when the military brigand held sway for years.
“I have been watching events as they unfold, but I am saddened that the event that transpired in the court was a testimony that Nigeria has a long way to go. The Department of State Services (DSS) has failed to respect the rule of law and it is a sad reminder of the military era.”
Adams expressed sadness that the prolonged detention of Sowore has affected the image of Nigeria, because the world is watching the government with keen interest.
“This is not the democracy we fought for between 1993 and 1998.
“I remembered vividly as activists and pro-democracy groups, we put our lives on the line to ensure that our dreams for this democracy became a reality. Now, democracy is here, but we have lost touch with the ideals of a democratic setting as it is practised in other climes.”
Adams, however, flayed the stringent bail condition given to Sowore, saying it was a ploy to strangle justice. He admitted that the restrictions of his movement to only Abuja had only justified that this government is using the DSS to frustrate perceived oppositions.
“I remember during the inglorious years of the late Abacha, the names of those that acted on his behalf; all the actors that used his name and the state mercenaries to perpetrate evil are not mentioned now; it is Abacha ‘s name that keeps ringing, and remains in the dustbin of history, while a few others are still alive today to enjoy their loots at the expense of the people.
“Therefore, I am using this opportunity to advise President Buhari, not to allow these set of people at the corridors of power to use his name and the office of the presidency to perpetrate evil that could later discredit his name in the future,” he said.