Sowore’s Arrest: This Government Is Allergic To Plurality Of Voices, Criticism – Ozekhome

Ignatius Igwe  
Updated August 4, 2019
Human rights lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mike Ozekhome.


Human rights lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr Mike Ozekhome, has accused the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration of not being tolerant to criticism. 

Ozekhome, who appeared as a guest on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics, said the current government is “allergic to plurality of voices and criticism”.

He said: “Dancing on the street saying we don’t want bad governance how does that amount to treason, unreasonable felony?

“This government is allergic to plurality of voices, this government is allergic to criticism, this government is allergic to opinions. This government should know that Nigeria is a country with many colours.

“You cannot sample opinions. We cannot all sleep on the same bed. This government should learn to be tolerant,” he said.

His comment comes in the wake of the arrest of  former Presidential Aspirant of the African Action Congress (AAC) in the 2019 general elections, Omoyele Sowore by the Department of State Service, an act condemned by notable Nigerians including former Vice President Atiku Abubakar.

READ ALSO: DSS Arrests Omoyele Sowore

Following Sowore’s arrest, the Nigeria Police described the planned protests by some individuals as ‘treasonable felony and acts of terrorism’, vowing resist any act that can lead to a breach of law and order in the country.

But reacting to the allegation, Ozekhome disagreed with the government and security agencies, describing the allegations as “most illogical and damning.”

“That allegation is most plural, most damning and most illogical from the government or security spokespersons.

“What is treason? For the definition of treason, you have to look at Sections 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42 and 43 of the Criminal Code which applies in the Southern part of Nigeria.

“Then you must look at Section 410 of the Penal Code that applies in the Northern part of Nigeria including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.  Treason is the act of overthrowing the sovereign government of a state,” he stated.

Earlier, a foremost Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana, condemned the arrest, calling on the Federal Government to call the security agencies to order.