Members of the Youth Wing of the Peoples Democratic Party on Thursday protested the continued detention of a social activist and PDP new media personality, Abubakar Idris, popularly known as Abu Hanifa Dadiyata.
They urged President Muhammadu Buhari to make public the whereabouts of Idris. They stated that it was undemocratic that the whereabouts of Idris, who was arrested by a team suspected to have come from the Department of State Security had remained unknown.
They also called on the DSS to absolve itself of culpability in the continued incarceration of Idris.
The youths, who protested at the Unity Fountain, Abuja, chanted songs and carried placards with different inscriptions.
Some of the inscriptions read, ‘Where is Dadiyata?’ ‘DSS release him or charge him to court?’ ‘It is unconstitutional, undemocratic to detain Dadiyata beyond 48 hours without a validly obtained court order!’ among others.
The leader of the group, Anthony Ehilebo, who is also the Head of New Media, PDP said it is undemocratic to curtail citizen’s freedom of expression.
He stated that Idris should have been charged to court 48 hours after his arrest if he had committed any offence.
According to him, the protest will continue until Idris was released.
He said, “Dadiyata is a vocal member of the society known for holding government accountable. He has not been accused of any crime and his rights to free speech and fair hearing still stand as guaranteed by the 1999 Nigerian Constitution. He ought to have been charged to court within 48 hours of his arrest but this has not been done and there has been no contact with him since he was abducted. Our call right now is ‘Where is Dadiyata?’
“This abduction, the subsequent silence on it and the absence of a response to various demands for answers are indicative of an attack on the civil freedom that exists for citizens of Nigeria. It also indicates a disregard for the wishes and welfare of the citizens who
the government is called to serve and protect.
“No citizen should be stopped from exercising their rights to free speech. This abduction of Dadiyata directly counters this right as
guaranteed by the constitution and we ask that he be immediately released and the process of rule of law followed.”
The North-West Coordinator of PDP New Media, Andrew Enantomhen, said Idris’ family members and friends ought to know of his whereabouts.