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Rights groups condemn secrecy behind Yar’Adua’s return

By Taye Obateru

Jos —  Civil rights groups in Plateau State have described the secrecy surrounding President Umaru Yar’ Adua’s return to the country on Tuesday night as capable of heightening rumours on his state of health.

In separate reactions to the development, yesterday, the Centre for Good Governance, League for Human Rights and the Civil Societies Coalition said smuggling the president in as was done only confirmed that he was still unhealthy.

President of the Civil Societies Coalition in Plateau State, Joseph Sangosanya, described the sneaking in of the president as ridiculous. “It is very clear that the ailing president has not recovered. Will the ailing president follow the path of honour or will the fate of over 150 million Nigerians be decided by a secret president?” he asked.

In his reaction, Director of the League for Human Rights, Shamaki Peter, said nothing had changed and that Dr. Goodluck Jonathan should continue to act until the true state of the president’s health was ascertained.

“Until the National Assembly says otherwise, Goodluck is still in charge. We urge Nigerians to ensure that democracy is protected and that a few individuals do not hold the country to ransome,” he said.

Similarly, state Coordinator of Centre for Good Governance, Lukman Bello, said the secrecy surrounding the president’s condition would continue to encourage rumour peddling, recalling that the circumstances surrounding his departure from the country in November last year and subsequent developments had not helped matters.

According to him, “the truth of the whole thing is that there is a cabal that is not comfortable with any other person as president and that is why he has to be smuggled back into the country.

Something is till fishy about the whole thing and we call on those concerned to come out clean with Nigerians because Yar’Adua, as an individual responsible to just his family, is different from Yar’Adua as president of the country.”


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