Operatives of Nigeria’s Secret Police began a siege on the Abuja residence of former National Security Advisor (NSA), Colonel Sambo Dasuki (Rtd) on the morning of Thursday, November 5, 2015.
The Trent was the first newspaper to report the Department of State Security Services (DSS, also known as SSS) operation at the home of Dasuki, which began at about 10am in the morning.
Our reporter spoke with Mr. Deji Adeyanju, a former presidential aide who like Dasuki, served under President Goodluck Jonathan who confirmed that he had spoken with Dasuki on the phone.
“The DSS is holding him (Dasuki) hostage in his house. They want to arrest him to prevent him from travelling abroad for his medical treatment,” Adeyanju told our reporter at about 7pm. “This is executive lawlessness. There is a court order permitting Dasuki to travel for medical reasons. But the DSS have disregarded the judiciary and is effectively executing an illegal house arrest. Our democracy is threatened by this government.”
The Trent can confirm that as at 8pm, operatives of the DSS are still at Dasuki’s residence preventing him from leaving his house though there is a court order authorizing his travel on medical grounds.
A leading human rights activist, Emeka Umeagbalasi commenting on the development, said, “Buhari is taking Nigeria back his 1984 strong-arm totalitarian regime. This is a continuing story of how Buhari’s government is systematically destroying our democracy and taking us back to the dark days when the government ignored court orders and the judiciary and kept citizens incarcerated at the pleasure of the commander-in-chief.
“The DSS is being used to perpetuate executive recklessness and lawlessness and the wanton violation of human rights in Nigeria. We have warned before that Buhari is gradually turning Nigerian to a constitutional dictatorship. This is worrisome,” remarked Umeagbalasi, who is board chairman of human rights group, International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (Intersociety).
Below is our earlier report on the matter.
Operatives of Nigeria’s Secret Police have a few minutes ago, invaded the Abuja residence of Colonel Sambo Dasuki (Rtd) with a view of arresting him.
Dasuki, who served as National Security Advisor (NSA) to former President Goodluck Jonathan was in September 2015, charged to court by the Department of State Security Services (DSS, also called SSS) for being in possession of seven rifles without a license. He was granted bail on self recognition.
A source closely monitoring the situation confirmed to The Trent that operatives of the DSS have invaded Dasuki’s residence at about 10am, Thursday, November 5, 2015 with a view of re-arresting him for unknown reasons.
“Armed operatives of the SSS have presently barricaded the gate of Dasuki’s house,” the source, who did not want to be named told our reporter. “They want to rearrest him for undisclosed reasons. They claim to be here on ‘orders from above’.”
On Monday, October 26, 2015 the Federal Government brought additional charges of money laundering against Dasuki before an Abuja court, where he was facing a one count charge. The Nigerian government also requested for a secret trial in which state witnesses would be masked and unidentified. Dasuki has objected to a secret trial.
The Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, on Tuesday, gave Dasuki a nod to travel abroad for medical treatment ordering that the DSS releases his passport to him.
It’s A Witchhunt – Dasuki Says
Soon after Buhari was sworn into office, National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki’s house was raided by operatives of the DSS in July with subsequent threats of charges for treasonable felony being brought against him over $40,000, seven luxury cars, and seven rifles found in his residence. His passport was unlawfully seized by the DSS.
Dasuki is a retired Army colonel and crown prince of the Sokoto Sultanate. He maintains that the raid on his house is a ‘witch-hunt’ by the Buhari government.
President Buhari appointed Lawal Daura, his kinsman from his hometown in Katsina on July 2, as head of the DSS after firing Ita Ekpeyong. Daura was recalled from retirement as he had retired from the service of the DSS when he reached the mandatory age of 60 according to the Civil Service rules of Nigeria. Daura has been exposed as a member of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and served on the security committee for Buhari’s presidential campaign.
It would be recalled that there has been considerable persecution of members and perceived sympathisers of the former President Goodluck Jonathan administration by the DSS, since Daura’s appointment. Some notable victims of the said clampdown include the former Chief Security Office (CSO) of Jonathan, Gordon Obua, who was detained in solitary confinement for days.