COVID-19: Retired general challenges Sule over arrest, prosecution

Governor Sule

Brig.-Gen Muhammad Ibn Umar Adela (rtd), Wednesday, challenged Governor Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa over his arrest and detention for observing Friday prayers in his house during the COVID-19 lockdown.

In a statement he personally signed and made available to newsmen in Lafia, he alleged that Governor Sule had directed the state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Bola Longe to arrest, detain, charge and prosecute him on behalf of the government of Nasarawa state.

He said the directive to close down all places of worship in Nasarawa is an extension of the hypocrisy with both advertent and inadvertent collateral damage globally.

Adeka, who was a former special adviser to the former governor of Nasarawa state, Umaru Al-Makura, on security matters, stated that the arrest order was executed at his residence at about 03:00 pm on Friday,1st May,2020 with a team of about 50 policemen, led by a deputy commissioner of police.

“As part of effort to get him arrested by the police, there was treacherous concoction to the effect that Brigadier General Muhammad Adeka (rtd), had engaged in violent encounter with the security men sent to his residence, including seizing of the DPS’s smart phone and smashing it on macadam.

“This type of disposition on the part of security operatives will never move the country forward, security-wise. It is disgraceful for any entity claiming to be a security agent, who knows something about me, to have condescended so low and yield to such inclination”.

The statement also said:” In view of the foregoing, I would consider Governor Sule’s direct phone call to me, my arrest with about 50 policemen, my detention in the police cell with an enclosed un kept pit-hole latrine for about 22 hours, the inability of the state government to make provision for the breaking of my Ramadan fast and the eating of food at dawn(sahur), my charge, prosecution and the denial of access to my charge sheet for 52 days as mere acts of intimidation perpetrated by governor Abdullahi Sule, Nasarawa state government and on behalf of the duo under Governor Sule’s command”.

He said all these were perpetrated in flagrant disregard of the constitutional provisions, knowing full well that there is nothing in the Quarantine Act that could create an illusion to the effect that Nigerian constitution was not in operation.

Adeka stated that neither the president nor governor can suspend any provision of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) without an input from the National Assembly.

He said any other law that is not consistent with the constitution shall remain void to the extent of its inconsistencies (section 1(3). Since in his wisdom, Mr. President decided not to invoke section 305 throughout the nation but relied solely on the Quarantine Act for his coronavirus disease 2019 regulations (Presidential COVID-19 regulations (1and 2) 2020). It follows that the entire Nigerian constitution is fully in operation.

He commended the judiciary for being quick at recognising the inconsistencies of the Nigeria Police in handling his case, right from the arrest through prosecution.

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