lCalls for immediate release of Dasuki

By Ben Agande

Kaduna—Former Military Governor of Kaduna State, Colonel Abubakar Dangiwa Umar (retd), has said the continuous detention of former National Security Adviser, NSA, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd), despite series of court pronouncements granting him bail, gives credence to the allegations that President Muhammad Buhari’s anti corruption fight was mainly to destroy opposition politics in the country.

In a statement issued in Kaduna, yesterday, Colonel Umar said for the anti corruption war to make any meaningful impact, “it must be elevated beyond a President Buhari personal struggle to a national one.”

He, however, commended the Federal Government for not detaining former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, David Babachir Lawal, and Director-General of National Intelligence Agency, NIA, Ambassador Ayodele Oke, while they are being investigated.

Commenting on the continued detention of Col. Dasuki, Umar said the reasons adduced by the Federal Government for his detention were untenable.

He noted that continued detention of  Col Dasuki was a great disservice to the nation, calling on Nigerians to rise and speak against it.

The statement read: “Most fair minded Nigerians are no more impressed and are, indeed, sceptical about the conduct of this government’s anti corruption war, which appears to be aimed at the neutralization and destruction of the opposition.

“It is over one year since three law courts, including ECOWAS Court, granted bail to Col. M.S. Dasuki. The Federal Government has, however, refused to release him, citing the untenable excuse of the grievous nature of his offence. Our extant constitution is quite clear on this issue.

“The Federal Government does not have the power to determine which offence is bailable or whether an accused person is deserving of bail. It should, therefore, obey courts’ decisions and release Col. Dasuki without any further delay.

“His unlawful detention, campaign of calumny and pretrial publicity make it impossible for him to receive a fair trial.

“The only explanation one can find for Col. Dasuki’s lengthy detention without trial is that he belongs to the wrong camp. He has also the misfortune of having served as National Security Adviser to the much vilified Nigerian President of Ijaw extraction.

“Colonel Dasuki’s fate is tied to that of his former principal, President Goodluck Jonathan; an honourable and patriotic Nigerian, who conceded defeat and congratulated the winner of the 2015 Presidential election, Gen Muhammadu Buhari, even before INEC declared the final results, when he could have held on tenaciously to power as is the norm in many Third World countries.

“This rare act of statesmanship, which pulled the country back from the precipice, has been rewarded with utmost disrespect and derision by the APC Federal Government.

“President Jonathan is the most maligned Nigerian former Head of State. Col. Dasuki is paying dearly for his loyal service to this patriot. All well-meaning Nigerians must speak out against his unfair and unlawful treatment.

“We cannot afford to remain neutral in the face of this monumental injustice. When one Nigerian is unlawfully detained, all of us must have the moral consciousness to feel psychologically incarcerated.

On SGF, DG NIA,

“The decision by the Federal Government of Nigeria to suspend the SGF, Mr David Babachir Lawal, and the DG NIA, Mr Ayodele Oke, while they are being investigated is a welcome development in its war against corruption.

“It is also remarkable and commendable that the government has decided not to detain the duo while they are being investigated. This is a welcome departure from the prevailing anti-democratic process by which accused persons, particularly from the opposition camp, are unlawfully detained, pending the commencement of investigations, or refused bail granted by law courts.

“There is national unanimity in support of the war against corruption which is expected to be non-discriminatory and waged by a meticulous adherence to the rule of law. For the war to be meaningful and sustainable, it must be elevated beyond a President Buhari personal struggle to a national one.”

 

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