A human rights advocate and chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Joshua Alobo, on Monday, insinuated that his party originated activities that can now be interpreted as hate speech in the current administration.
Mr Alobo was responding to a question on Sunrise Daily, about the Department of State Services’ treatment of founder of RevolutionNow, Omoyele Sowore.
He said he was “seriously embarrassed” by the situation as Sowore was “among those who canvassed for the ‘change’ mantra.”
“APC, in which I am a chieftain, originates hate speech,” Mr Alobo, who is the President of the International Human Rights and Development Centre, continued.
“Look at what happened at . . . even Lai Muhammed and the rest, nobody was arrested. Look at the fuel subsidy protest at the freedom square. If not that Jonathan was proactive to deploy soldiers . . . I was in Abuja; even though I wasn’t in the general protest, I was using my vehicle to monitor the whole situation.
“So a lot of showbiz was going on during the Jonathan administration, they don’t look at it as a threat to the government. What is Sowore? They are just making the guy to be too popular, I don’t know him as a person. But they have been reading Sahara Reporters right from Jonathan era, a lot of information has been disclosed and all those things.
“So if a media practitioner cannot express his opinion, then what will he do? And this is a man that has the pedigree of activism right from University. So the DSS for goodness sake should not bring another terrorist group. It is the suppression of Yusuf Muhammed that escalated into what we have now as Boko Haram.”
Sowore was re-arrested by the DSS on Friday less than 24 hours after he was released from the agency’s custody. The move has drawn condemnation from several quarters, including Nobel laureate, Wole Soyinka and the US government.
However, the DSS has said Sowore was re-arrested because he resorted to “acts inimical to security” shortly after being released from its custody.