Omoyele Sowore, a popular online publisher and activist, is in the custody of the Department of State Security, DSS, the service has confirmed on Sunday, August 4, 2019.
It said arrangements have been concluded to ensure the protest march being planned by his associates does not take place on Monday, August 5, 2019, DSS spokesman, Dr. Peter Afunanya.
“He (Sowore) is with us because he has crossed the line, he has threatened public safety; Sowore has, as a matter of fact threatened the peaceful coexistence, social harmony of Nigeria and there is apprehension, there is anxiety, citizens are worried as to what would happen next,” said Afunanya .
Asserting “there would not be anything like a revolution ,” the DSS spokesman, who declined to disclose where Sowore was being held or when he would be arraigned in court, emphasised that there is more than enough justification for keeping Sowore in custody.
“In the last few hours , I have been inundated with messages and calls inquiring whether or not Omoyele Sowore is with us,” Afunanya told reporters at the DSS headquarters in Abuja on Sunday shortly before making it clear that the DSS is not ready to disclose where the online is being kept or when he would be arraigned in court.
Afunanya, who emphasised the the DSS is convinced Sowore is working in tandem with some undisclosed foreign interests also expressed the DSS’ confidence that the demonstration being planned by the associates of Omoyele Sowore will not take place on Monday.
“The DSS is a responsible security and intelligence agency, it adheres strictly to the fundamental principles and tenets of democracy; it is statutorily charged with responsibilities for the detection and prevention of cries and threats against the internal security of Nigeria.
“More importantly, the service is also charged with the responsibility of managing, containing and eliminating threats against the national security of Nigeria and these include threats of sabotage, subversion, terrorism and of course , threats of espionage, including ethnic and separatist agitations, economic sabotage and so on.
“If we are operating as a responsible organisation and someone is calling for a revolution in Nigeria, what is a revolution? It is primarily a revolt, it means insurrection, insurgency, it means forceful takeover of government.
“Nigeria operates a democratic system; it is not a banana republic and cannot suddenly be made into one.
“Nigeria is respected in the comity of nations, it is the prie of Africa; the DSS will not sit by and watch someone and his cohorts threaten the peace and constitutionalism ; as to whether Sowore is wth us or not , the answer is in the affirmative – Sowore is with us,” he stated.
Speaking further, Dr. Afunanya gave assurance that the demonstration being planned by Sowore’s associates and scheduled for Monday cannot be allowed to disturb the nation’s peace.
“We want to use this opportunity to assure law-abiding Nigerians, friends of Nigeria and people of the world that come tomorrow, 5th of August, 2019, there ‘ ll be absolute peace in Nigeria and nothing would happen, there won’t be any revolution.
“The government that has been elected democratically will remain in place, there will not be any forceful takeover of government and the DSS will not stand by and watch self-serving people take the laws into their hands
“We will do all that is within the law to discharge our responsibilities and ensure that there is peace in Nigeria tomorrow,” Afunanya said .
Speaking further, Afunanya said that anyone in pursuit of power who lost an election ought to wait for another election rather than take steps that could run into conflict with DSS’ statutory responsibilities of preserving peace and order.
He also said that DSS believes that Sowore is determined to carry out his threats for sabotaging government and governance in Nigeria using some foreign collaborators.
“We are aware that he is also working with some persons outside Nigeria to cause disaffection, chaos and anarchy in the country and we will not stand by and watch that happen,” Afunanya said.
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