Nigeria’s self-styled Department of State Services [DSS], an intelligence gathering agency that has become extremely notorious for its lawlessness with total disrespect for fundamental human rights and the judicial system, has expectedly refused to release the five church members who were arrested at Dunamis International Gospel Centre, Abuja, Nigeria’s capital.
Recall that on Monday, July 26, CitizensAlert reported that a Federal High Court in Abuja which was presided over by Justice A. I Chikere, had ordered for the immediate release of the five church members who were arbitrarily arrested and detained for merely wearing “Buhari Must Go” branded T-shirts to the church.
Following their illegal arrest and detention, which was orchestrated by the church in collaboration with the lawless DSS, the detainees filed a fundamental rights application, asking the court to protect and enforce their fundamental rights to personal liberty and freedom of expression. The church members also asked the court to order for their immediate release from illegal custody.
But despite the order of the court for the immediate release of the five church members, the DSS ignored the court order, went to a magistrate court within the capital where it has now filed bogus criminal charges against the church members, in total defiance of the extant release order issued by a competent court.
The church members have been held incommunicado since July 4, 2021 when they worshipped at Dunamis International Gospel Centre, Abuja, before they were arrested and tortured by the church security and subsequently handed over to lawless DSS for wearing T-shirts asking that dictator Buhari leaves office over his appalling incompetence.
Amongst the victims is a visually impaired saxophonist Samuel Gabriel Iwatonaiye who reportedly fell extremely ill in detention, but the DSS refused him access to treatment of any kind and equally barred his family members from visiting him.
CitizensAlert gathered that the DSS concocted non-existent criminal charges against the church members whom it is very well known were arrested and arbitrarily detained for wearing T-shirts branded with the inscription: “Buhari Must Go.”
Since dictator Buhari assumed office, his catastrophic performances and sectional leadership which favours only Northern Nigeria, has attracted all forms of legitimate protests as Nigerians insist that the tyrant was elected by all Nigerians and not only Northern Nigerians.
The dictator has also entrenched the highest degree of lawlessness which might become extremely difficult to erase long after he leaves office in 2023. Critics, unarmed peaceful protesters, journalists are either being extrajudicially killed or arrested and slammed with trumped-up charges for merely expressing their views in consonance with the Nigerian Constitution and the African Charter.
Fully armed police officers and soldiers are now sent to protest venues with armoured vehicles as though protests were a civil war. Since the Buhari presidency came to life in 2015, the number of Nigerians killed for merely exercising their constitutional rights is astonishing and disturbing.
The head pastor of Dunamis International Gospel Centre Paul Enenche had informed activists Omoyele Sowore and Deji Adeyanju during a meeting over the arrested church members that the church had no hand in their arrest and detention. He promised that he would be in touch with the DSS to ensure their immediate release from illegal detention.
However, despite his colourful promises, it has now been revealed that the pastor is responsible for the continuous detention of his members even after a court ordered that they be released with immediate effect.