Posted by News Express | 12 May 2016 | 2,234 times
The arrest, on Tuesday, of Barrister Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) “is inexcusably political and ill-conceived,” the International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (Intersociety) has said.
Intersociety in a statement signed by its Board Chairman Emeka Umeagbalasi, described Barr Adegboruwa, who has remained in detention, as belonging to the Lagos School of Democracy & Human Rights Activism. The group in the statement issued yesterday in Onitsha further described the radical lawyer as “one of the few credible critics of the administration of Gen Muhammadu Buhari from the Lagos section of Nigerian Civil Society Community; which has been accused in many social quarters of conspiratorially going dead since the emergence of Gen Muhammadu Buhari as President of Nigeria.”
Condemning the arrest and detention of the popular activist, Intersociety said: “From the latest detailed public response of the Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa’s Law Firm over EFCC’s accusation leveled against him; “obtaining money by false pretence”, it is obvious that the activist lawyer is being persecuted for standing firmly against killer-policies of the Buhari’s Presidency. We also agree with the activist lawyer’s law firm that “he is further being persecuted because of his law firm’s professional briefs from the duo of Mr. Government Ekpemupolo (a.k.a. Tompolo) and Mr. Azibaola Robert; a relative of former President Goodluck Jonathan. Under the 1999 Constitution and its subsidiary laws, Mr. Government Ekpemupolo and Mr. Asibaola Robert have constitutional and legal rights to be represented by lawyers of their own, no matter the gravity of criminal allegations so leveled.”
As Intersociety sees it, “To dust up a legally dead matter with court-sanctioned arbitrated settlement, and convert it to criminal allegation of “obtaining money by false pretence” so as to cow and intimidate Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa is roundly condemned. In the name of “fighting corruption”, the Buhari administration has injured the souls of many innocent citizens by using machinery of the State to fight political war or vendetta, in the false name of “fighting corruption”. In the Buhari administration’s so called “fight against corruption”, all corrupt politicians in its camp including those that sponsored the APC presidential campaigns, those that reportedly shared dollar bribes to delegates at the APC presidential primaries and those that provided private jets and helicopters used by Gen Buhari and top members of his Party, are spared and shielded till date; while any known political opponent or critic of the present administration is hounded and labeled “corrupt”. We have severally stated that “a cabalistic cartel, composed of doyens of corruption” can never fight corruption because corruption begets corruption.”
Intersociety demanded for the “immediate release of Barr Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa and cessation of indiscriminate arrest and detention of Nigerians of social criticism.” The group said that as a member of the United Nations, Nigeria under Gen Muhammadu Buhari must refrain from breaching the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Human Rights Defenders. “Human Rights Defenders, Pro Democracy Campaigners and Media Activists are the souls of their countries and formidable change agents that must be protected by the State at all times; not the other way round,” Intersociety said.
•Photo shows Barrister Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa.
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