HURIWA Faults EFCC on Shehu Sani’s Media Persecution
The Prominent Civil Rights Advocacy group-HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (HURIWA) has faulted the provocative; orchestrated and unwarranted media persecution of the vocal critic of the current President Muhammadu Buhari, and the erstwhile Senator who represented Kaduna Central Senatorial District in the 8th session of the National Assembly Comrade SHEHU SANI by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) just as the Rights group has asked the anti-graft commission to adhere strictly to the constitutional principle of Rule of law by calling off the persistent one sided charade of media persecution of SHEHU SANI using the so-called investigations over allegations of impersonation or fraud.
HURIWA said the avalanche of seemingly sponsored salacious and sexed up tales exported to the media spaces by the agents of the EFCC with the sole aim of soiling the image of the Kaduna born civil Rights Activist Comrade SHEHU SANI based on only the claims made by his accuser and the Kaduna based motor dealer Alhaji Sani Dauda of the ASD motors Kaduna even before the Court of competent jurisdiction is ceased of the matter shows the extensive and compulsive desperation of the hierarchy of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)headed by the acting Chairman Alhaji Ibrahim Magu to nail Senator SHEHU SANI and to attempt to silence him for life to give the paymaster of EFCC President Muhammadu Buhari the breathing space to continue in the dramatic undermining of constitutional democracy and to become a totalitarian regime. “There is little doubt that the current Totalitarian President is absolutely intolerant of constructivecriticism and is afraid of media freedoms.”
HURIWA said:”We in the organised human rights community have chosen to first of all restrain ourselves from jumping into the media fray to defend the detained civil Rights advocacy leader Comrade SHEHU SANI because we thought that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) would have by now adopted the global best practices and put a total stop to all media orchestrations and stampeding with the aim of first of all achieving through the illegal backdoor channel the total demonisation of a citizen in its custody before even heading to court to obtain an experte to further detain the citizen, deprive him of his civil liberties and freedoms and to further instigate rounds of one sided media warfare against the Nigerian citizen even when section 36(5) of the Nigerian Constitution in a very unambiguous fashion provided that all accused persons are innocent in the eyes of the law. However, we have broken our dignified silence because of the continuous media orchestrations and unjustifiable trial of the Kaduna born civil Rights advocate Comrade SHEHU SANI who we suspect may be a victim of the political vendetta of the current administration that has zero tolerance approach to civilised opposition and the exercises of all constitutional freedoms guaranteed under the chapter 4 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and all international human rights laws and statutes which have a globalised benchmark of demanding that an accused person be granted fair hearing and that the independent judiciary must be granted unfettered opportunities to arrive at a determination that is right, just, fair, independent and unbiased”.
“The style of the current EFCC to always depend on half baked media propaganda to damage accused persons in their custody has continued to paint Nigeria as a failed state or a Banana republic. Nigerians must not keep silent and allow citizens to be unduly profiled as criminals based on some tissues of uninvestigated allegations from someone who by his own admission said he has a score to settle with the EFCC or that he has cases that the EFCC may be handling or both. Is it not possible that the entire scenario is a charade set up to rope in the foremost critic of the current President with the eventual prize of granting the accuser a soft landing for agreeing to be used as the canon fodder in the demolition through illegal processes of the most vocal critic of the current President who has no tolerance of any type to even using his name for comedy? More so, we have it on the authority of the claims of the Kaduna born civil Rights leader that what transpired between him and Alhaji Sani Dauda was purely a commercial transaction of buying a car or not. WHEN has the EFCC become a debt collector to an extent that it is vigourously holding on to only one side of the claims and running to the media on daily basis with that seemingly unproven allegations without first allowing the Court of competent jurisdiction to exercise their powers and authorities as enshrined in the Constitution in Section 6? These things and illegal ways of law enforcement will eternally damage Nigeria’s constitutional path to good governance and respect for the human rights of the citizens which is the basis of our sovereignty”.
HURIWA further stated that: “Senator SHEHU Sani’s personal assistant Mr. Suleiman who spoke with us said that the lawmaker decided to honour the invitation ahead of time to give his own side of what transpired between him and Alhaji Sani Dauda , Owner of ASD Motors.
He narrated that the senator at a time on his own volition went to sympathise with ASD over his arrest regarding a marital issue involving his daughter inlaw.
That ASD had approached him to change his old Peugeot to new model and also insisted that he can make the payment on two instalments. They agreed on 508 model which cost $17million.
Suleiman stated that Sani had made the initial deposit of $25,000 in two tranchesof $12,000 and $13,000 respectively.”
According Suleiman “At a point ASD went to Saudi Arabia for Lesser Hajj and gave the senator a proforma invoice with an account number that If he has the balance he can pay into the account just as he explained that recently ASD put several phone calls to the lawmaker not to show up at the EFCC when he is being called upon. He wondered why ASD went to lodge a complaint at the anti graft agency and at the same time asked Sani not to honour the invitation. So why is the EFCC treating the former Senator as a common thief even when he has his own version of the encounters between him and his accuser? Shouldn’t it be the accusers words against the accused and why keep the Senator from also defending himself before the media whereas his accuser and the EFCC are having a bonanza of media propaganda against Senator SHEHU SANI”?
HURIWA has therefore asked the EFCC to comply strictly with the constitutional norms by charging the matter to court so the two claimants can have their day in court. “The idea of dumping a citizen in prolonged detention so the EFCC will embark on last minutes voyage of discovery including taking possession of the telephones of a citizen without the authorization of the Court are all the attitudes that demonstrate that Comrade SHEHU SANI is very likely being used as an experimental ‘guinea pig ‘ to show persons and groups with independent opinions which run contrary to the straighjacketed positions of President Muhammadu Buhari and the unelected Members of the Presidential cabal that the EFCC which is the potent attack dog of the All Progressives Congress led central government will bark and bite critics of President Muhammadu Buhari unless they surrender and become political zombies. What is happening now is the systematic or incremental emergence of a TOTALITARIAN REGIME and Nigerians must legitimately and lawfully resist and reject it now. NIGERIANS, WAKE UP AND SMELL THE COFFEE.”