PDP Condemns Handcuffing Of Metuh, Releases Statement

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The Peoples Democratic Party has condemned the handcuffing
of its National Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisa Metuh when he appeared in
court today monitored by prison officials. The party described it has the brazen
display of “authoritarianism” by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government and
called on Nigerians to be aware that the country is fast drifting into a police
state where being in opposition or holding views divergent to that of the
government makes one a criminal and an enemy of the state. It also asked the
media to remain fair at all times and support justice. The party noted that
though some of APC members were tried under Jonathan but none was harassed with
a handcuff and wonder why that should happen now.
“If not to mortify, dehumanize and break our National
Publicity Secretary, who has been very vocal against the APC administration,
and of course to send a signal to others critical of the government, what else
would have informed the decision to produce him in court in handcuffs, even
when his case does not border on security threat?
“Is this an attempt to sway the court and ambush the
judicial process against our National Publicity Secretary, all because of his
stance against observed ineptitude and dictatorial tendencies of this
administration?,” its national secretary, Adewale Oladipo, said in the statement
released this evening.

The PDP also called on all Nigerians and the international
community to note the emerging “barefaced abuse of state power and violation of
constitutional provisions” regarding the arrest, detention and eventual
arraignment of its spokesperson.
“Nigerians by now, should be extremely scared that our
country is fast drifting into a police state where being in opposition or
holding views divergent to that of the government makes one a criminal and an
enemy of the state.
“For now, the target of the on-going lopsided war against
corruption is the PDP and its leaders. All APC members, including those with
known corruption issues are immune from investigation, arrest and prosecution.
“However, more worrisome is the fact that institutions of
government, especially security and corrective agencies have now fallen victims
of dictatorial abuses. Our fear now is that in no time, ordinary citizens of
Nigerians, who in the last 16 years have lived under the rule of law and
constitutionally guaranteed personal liberty, would begin to suffer brutality
and oppression.
“Under PDP administration, some Nigerians, including APC
leader and former Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu were tried but
never humiliated; now we see security operatives under this regime being used
to crush and humiliate the opposition.
“Finally, while we study the bail conditions, we urge all
PDP members to remain calm, united, focused and continue to pray for the nation
and her people. We also urge the media to remain on the side of justice,
fairness and rule of law and resist the pressure of being used as a tool to
promote arbitrariness and abuse of process in the so-called fight against
corruption,” the party said.

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