…by Chukwuma Dike, Abuja
The Sokoto based civil rights group, the Media Forum for Development (MEFODE) has called on President Muhammadu Buhari led federal government to release the former National Security Adviser (NSA), Sambo Dasuki.
The interim National Coordinator of the group, Comrade Abdallah el-Kurebe, at a briefing in Sokoto State, called on the government to respect the rule of law and obey court order to free Dasuki who has been detained for a year now.
He reminded that Dasuki would have spent one year in detention since his arrest by security operatives on December 1, 2015 from his residence in Abuja.
el-Kurebe noted that MOFODE had been following the indictment and prosecution of the former NSA, and observed that there was the need for Federal Government to apply the rule of law as an ingredient for democracy.
“While the Forum supports President Buhari’s fight against corruption, an action that is supposedly intended to heighten Nigeria’s development in socio-economic and political strata, however in fighting corruption, FG must develop standards as well as apply the rule of law in doing so,” part of the statement read.
He contended that no nation would develop in the absence of rule of law and in such cases where “her extant laws and judicial structures are respected devoid of sentimentality and grudging impunity.
El-Kurebe continued: “Since his arrest, Dasuki has been held in detention since December 1, 2015 and after hey and cries, he was charged to court. Three Courts in Abuja have, either by origination or appeal against certain actions by government, granted him bail in addition to the ECOWAS Court, which ordered for his release,” the statement further read.
“While we are not in any position to exonerate Dasuki of any allegation labelled against him, our belief in the judicial system and the rule of law has forced us to call on the Federal government to obey court orders in respect of his release. To our knowledge, there is no law or counter order(s) so far that justify his current detention.”
The Coordinator of the rights group also observed that Dasuki had served the nation with best of intentions and ensured the procurement of arms and ammunition as approved by the immediate past administration.
This, he said, was even when foreign powers refused to sell them to Nigeria at the time the country direly needed them.
He also noted that “Dasuki ensured the recovery from Boko Haram and rehabilitation of more than 24 towns and cities before President Muhammadu Buhari’s takeover in May 2015 and ensured maximum training of the troops including Late Lt. Col. Abu Ali, who manned some of the armoured cars acquired during the past administration”.
“While MEFODE is not against the trial of any Nigerian citizen, including Dasuki, the rule of law should be seen to be observed in all ramifications. No meaningful development takes place without commitment to the rule of law.
“Importantly, the judiciary should be allowed to exercise its powers without undue interference by the executive arm of government. It is only by doing so that the country will be respected by the international,” el-Kurebe stated.