A Coalition of Civil Society Groups in Nigeria, has warned President Muhammadu Buhari and his administration to desist from making plans to arrest the mouthpiece of the youth, Femi Fani-Kayode and concentrate on the Fulani herdsmen that are killing innocent citizens, as its obvious that the president appears to minor in major and major in minor.
The group during their World Press Conference on Thursday, termed some actions of Buhari as chasing mere shadow, as it is shocking that despite the wide spread insecurity in Africa’s most populous nation, the President can leave the security challenges poised by herdsmen that have been rampaging different communities killing many innocent citizens and he (the President) will be using security forces to go after the most vocal voice in the opposition?
The Group in a statement signed by Rev. Emmanuel Olorunmagba, National Chairman of We Care Initiative and a host of others, alleged that plans are underway to arrest Chief Femi Fani-Kayode who is always speaking for the masses against the wickedness and evil of this administration is not good at all. Therefore they are warning the Presidency or any branch of the security forces that may be planning to arrest Chief Fani-Kayode in the interest of democracy stop and rather channel the energy towards arresting the herdsmen who are killing innocent citizens and terrorising the country to the extent that the expressway between our Federal Capital and Kaduna have been abandoned by travelers due to the fear of been killed or abducted.
The statement read: “We, the Coalition of Civil Society Groups in Nigeria, want to make it clear that any attempt to arrest Fani-Kayode will be resisted. And if the Government goes ahead to arrest him, we will do everything legally possible to ensure his release and of course we all know that such moves to ensure he is released will further dent the already dented image of Buhari and Nigeria.
“This will include, but not limited to peaceful physical mother of all protests, massive media protest, reaching out to the international community and other legal actions. And we all know that such is not good for Nigeria at this time that the hammer of travel ban is hanging on some Government officials in the country.
“It is important to note that on 15th January, 2019 the EFCC through one Mr. Orilade released a statement threatening to arrest the duo of Chief Femi Fani-Kayode and Mr. Yinka Odumakin, the spokesman of Afenifere.
“The threat was further heightened when on 23rd January, 2019 the same Mr Orilade boldly declared during a meeting of the Online Publishers Association of Nigeria (OPAN), that the EFCC would invite them (Fani-Kayode and Odumakin) and ensure they are detained indefinitely simply because they exposed the truth about the Commissions gestapo-like operations. It took a court injunction and subsequently a court ruling enforcing their fundamental human rights to stop the move.
“As if that was not enough, while the court order is still subsisting, another information recently broke out again as a retired intelligence officer in a video who claimed to be talking based on privileged information revealed by some in the nation’s security forces and intelligence agencies, asserted that there is another plot to indiscriminately arrest Chief Femi Fani-Kayode for treason. But, we say no to this.
“It’s common knowledge that opposition is part of democracy. But when we have a Government that wants to do everything possible, including unconstitutional moves, to silence the voice of the opposition then it proves that we are in a full blown dictatorship.
“In the light of the above, we are calling the attention of the international community through this World Press Conference to the fact that the situation in Nigeria has become a dictatorship whilst our leaders are supposed to be promoting democratic values and Nigeria is sliding into a full blown fascist state.
“While calling on the Federal Government of Nigeria to shelve the plan to arrest Chief Fani-Kayode, we also call on the European Union, United Kingdom, United States of America and others to look into the ongoing issues in Nigeria, as the members of the main opposition party are almost becoming helpless victims in the hands of the present administration.
“We say no to dictatorship, No to all attempts to suppress the voice of the opposition, No to violation of fundamental human rights of Nigerians, No to any planned arrest of Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, who is the most prominent vocal voice that speaks for the oppressed.” it added.
However the group called on the Federal Government to embrace democracy fully and stop future plans to arrest Femi Fani-Kayode, as a finger laid on him is an infringement on democracy.