Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has criticized the silence of the government over the rumors and threats of certain members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) being picked and detained for no identifiable crime against the country or anybody.
In a statement by his media office in Abuja, the former Vice President said the PDP crisis is an internal family disagreement, which should not give anybody the right to arrest those who are express dissenting voice.
According to him, “criminalizing legitimate dissent over internal disagreements could lead Nigeria into a police state and thereby, defeat all the basic features of the democratic system”.
The Turaki Adamawa noted with concern why anyone should lose his freedom for expressing contrary opinion.
He said the utterances of certain politicians and members of the other PDP faction were not good for the democratic image of the country.
The former Vice President said democracy and the rule of law frown at the idea of taking the liberty to threaten, harass or arrest those who express dissent with the PDP or any other party leadership.
Atiku said if disagreement is a criminal offence, then more than 90 percent of Nigerians should be arrested and taken to jail. Would they also be jailing the 38 percent of our youth population who are unemployed and the thousands of those students who are begging that the ASUU strike be immediately resolved so that they can resume their studies? He explained that majority of Nigerians don’t agree with the way the country is being run, but that doesn’t give anybody the power to curtail their freedom to hold that opinion.
He cited the examples of other democracies such as the UK and the US where fellow party members disagree with their prime minister or the president and nobody threatens them with arrest for expressing dissent.
“Democracy goes beyond lip service,” Atiku added.
…..Condoles With Victims’ Families, Niger govt over Boat Mishap
Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has described as heart-rending the death of scores and missing of many people in a boat mishap in Niger State over the weekend.
Atiku Abubakar said in a press statement by his media office in Abuja yesterday that the grief occasioned by the boat disaster is neither for the families of the deceased and the missing victims, nor the Niger State government, but a grief for the whole nation.
He noted that the death of the merchants who were plying their trade across the waterways is emotionally distasteful, more so that catastrophes such as this could have possibly been avoided if the nation had a responsive emergency capability.
“Much as we must mourn the deceased, we should not let this situation pass by, without learning a lesson from it on the imperative of improving on our national emergency response capabilities,” he said.
The Turaki Adamawa urged relevant emergency response units to rise up to the challenge by ensuring the missing is accounted for.
He expressed his condolences to the affected families and the government of Niger State, while also praying that God gives the bereaved families the fortitude to bear the loss of their loved ones.No tags for this post.