A frontline human rights lawyer in Nigeria, Femi Falana, has said that the country’s government has been arresting journalists to neutralise anticipated dissents of the third term it is plotting.
PUNCH reports that Mr Falana said this in Lagos while speaking at the presentation of a book entitled: “Testimony to Courage”, written in honour of Dapo Olorunyomi, the publisher of Premium Times.
The lawyer said the country had “gone to the dogs” and only the media could save it.
“The media must not be silenced. You may have a third term campaign soon,” he said.
“Very soon, they will destroy all possible opponents. And by the time they bring in the third term agenda, the media would have been gone. But we are not going to allow it. No dictatorship can defeat the Nigerian people.”
He expressed dismay at the way Ijeoma Ojukwu, a judge of a federal high court in Abuja, is handling the case of Omoyele Sowore, convener of RevolutionNow Movement.
“Nobody has been given the kind of bail (condition) Sowore was given. All those who looted the treasury have never had their movement restricted. Sowore has been granted bail, but his movement has been restricted to Abuja. His family is in America,” he said.
“He does not live in Abuja. He has no house in Abuja. Yet, he has been asked to stay in Abuja. The trial may last for 10 years, but he cannot leave Abuja. It has never happened in Nigeria before.
“Sowore has been banned as a journalist from speaking. As a politician, he cannot address a rally until the case is determined. We don’t know how long it will last.”