Senator Iroegbu in Abuja
Lagos-based lawyer and human rights activist, Mr. Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, has condemned what he described as an attempt by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government to stifle and intimidate opposing views.
Adegboruwa made his views known in a statement yesterday following his release after a brief detention at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), over an alleged fraudulent property deal.
Quoting Frantz Fanon, the activist said every generation must discover its own mission, either to fulfil or to betray it, adding that he has “never been under any illusion that it would be a smooth and jolly ride, to attempt to be a voice against oppression and dictatorship; but it didn’t occur to me that it would take any form of some vendetta.”
He said he was “told to accept the fact that there is a new administration in town, which does not like opposition and criticism and that anything can be done to silence all voices of dissent, including assassinations and trumped-up charges.”
He stated: “I was told point blank that if anybody is killed today, nothing will happen and that it is proper for me to always expect that any and all things will be deployed against me if I don’t keep quiet.
“My response is that I am not fighting General Muhammadu Buhari or indeed his administration.”
As known to everyone, many of those working with the President today are my friends, colleagues and some are even my mentors, as it were. But my passion is always justice, transparency and good governance and I cannot because of General Buhari shy away from this. So, the struggle continues. I cannot be cowed or intimidated.”
Speaking further, Adegboruwa made it clear that he “cannot agree with the new fuel price increment, as it has turned the misfortunes of our people to total misery.”
The lawyer said government must subsidise the poor and indigent amongst the people. He stressed that under section 14 of the 1999 Constitution, it is stated clearly that the security and welfare of the people shall be the primary purpose of government. He noted that there is poverty in the land and the masses are currently faced with acute hunger and famine.
The activist called on government to forthwith rescind the increase in the price of petroleum products, saying that “Nigerians deserve to feel the positive impact of government.”