By Tayo Olu
Angry reactions have trailed the arrest of a media aide to Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, by operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS).
Salihu Tanko Yakasai, popularly known as Dawisu, was reportedly arrested by the state security agents after taking to social media to critise the President Muhammadu Buhari-led All Progressives Congress (APC) government over recent abductions of schoolchildren in the country.
Dawisu had said that the APC government “at all levels” had failed Nigerians in their primary duties of protecting lives and property.
He mentioned Friday’s abduction of over 300 schoolgirls in Jangebe, Zamfara, and over 300 schoolboys in Kankara, Katsina, last December, as proofs that the APC government had failed.
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Dawisu, who is a member of the APC, had asked President Buhari and governors of troubled states in the country to “deal with terrorists decisively or resign”.
Kano State residents were said to have complained about Dawisu’s whereabouts after his series of tweets criticising the government for failing to protect the citizens.
Following his reported arrest, #FreeDawisu trended at number one on Saturday on Twitter as Nigerians criticised President Buhari and the state security service for constantly attempting to muzzle free speech in a democratic setting.
Co-convener of the Bring Back Our Girls movement, Aisha Yesufu, said the DSS was now “competing with kidnappers to abduct citizens”.
She added that, “It is more relieving to be with DSS not because they have not infringed on your right or kill you as kidnappers would but because you will not pay RANSOM! Dawisu is a citizen with the right to speak his mind #FreeDawisu”
EiE Nigeria, an advocacy group for good governance, described Dawisu’s arrest as, “a dangerous sign of a government that fears it is losing its mandate and is falling into panic.”
It said, “Critics are being arrested on ludicrous charges… while bandits roam free, tells us very clearly where Nigeria is headed. #FreeDawisu”
Below are some of the twitter reactions to Dawisu’s arrest
Shame!— Aisha Yesufu (@AishaYesufu) February 27, 2021
DSS competing with kidnappers to abduct citizens. It is more relieving to be with DSS not because they have not infringed on your right or kill you as kidnappers would but because you will not pay RANSOM!
Dawisu is a citizen with the right to speak his mind#FreeDawisu https://t.co/8H6pVJL1nm
#FreeDawisu Lawless DSS has arrested @dawisu for freely expressing his views regarding the failure of the @MBuhari’s govt. The DSS lazy leadership can’t help Nigerians facing insecurity but only ready and happy to pounce on Nigerians critical of the failing regime #BuhariMustGo— Omoyele Sowore (@YeleSowore) February 27, 2021
Just to be clear, criminals are getting interviews and being received like diplomats, whilst a citizen got arrested for this? Even if you ate directly off @MBuhari’s table this morning, you should be worried. You aren’t free in this “democracy” as it is today #FreeDawisu pic.twitter.com/ssXKzQ2qrQ— JJ. Omojuwa (@Omojuwa) February 27, 2021
The resources that ought to be disbursed for tackling burning national issues like banditry has unfortunately been wasted in abducting @dawisu in Kano and transporting him to Abuja. For what, I ask? What’s this madness for God’s sake? To intimidate government critics? #FreeDawisu— Gimba Kakanda (@gimbakakanda) February 27, 2021
The law moved extremely fast against @dawisu for asking better of government than it has moved against the so called bandits. As it is, the bandits are getting paid for their killings and abductions whilst this citizen was arrested for being a citizen. Be worried #FreeDawisu pic.twitter.com/cvqFSLSFW4— JJ. Omojuwa (@Omojuwa) February 27, 2021
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