Rights activist and journalist, Omoyele Sowore, has raised the alarm over a plot by the Nigerian Government to detain him over revelations by his news outlet, SaharaReporters, that Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, Abba Kyari, tested positive for Coronavirus.
On Monday night, SaharaReporters had exclusively reported that Kyari was ill and had contracted the deadly virus.
The online news medium went ahead on Tuesday to break the story of three of Kyari’s staff contracting the virus from him.
Till this moment, the Presidency has been unable to deny any of the reports, instead plotting to turn their anger on Sowore and SaharaReporters.
In a message to his followers on Facebook on Thursday, Sowore said his lawyers had informed him of a high-powered delegation sent to the Federal High Court in Abuja to obtain a detention order.
Sowore said, “Folks, it is important to inform you that we are facing some unusual circumstances and the days ahead might be very tensed and difficult, but we will conquer.
“Following the revelation by SaharaReporters that the Chief of Staff to Buhari, Abba Kyari, contracted Coronavirus and subsequent revelations about the criminal conducts/negligence that has brought Nigeria to the nadir of this global pandemic, the Buhari regime today sent some high powered delegation to the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court of Nigeria to help procure a detention order against me.
“The courts are reportedly on break due to COVID-19 pandemic. This was leaked to our lawyers a few minutes ago. They plan this time is to use the Nigerian Army for the sinister plot.
“The plan is to obtain a court order and then send soldiers to shoot up my residence in Abuja by claiming that I resisted arrest with armed colleagues.
“If I am arrested alive, they would take me to a military barracks in Abuja to be tortured and or infected with COVID-19.
“I am not raising the alarm to scare anyone, it is to inform our compatriots that we should brace for difficult days ahead.
“However, rest assured that we are in high spirits and are totally convinced that we may be turning a historic corner in the face of brutal repression.
“I am urging all to stand firm, unbowed and unbroken.”
Recall that Sowore was first arrested in the early hours of August 3, 2019 by operatives of the Department of State Services for calling on Nigerians to take to the streets in peaceful demonstrations on August 5 to demand a better country from the administration of President Buhari.
He was kept in unlawful detention from that period until December 5, 2019 when he was finally released on bail despite two court orders earlier sanctioning his freedom.
In a twist of event, DSS operatives invaded the Federal High Court in Abuja on December 6, 2019 to rearrest him without any court order.
He remained in unlawful detention until 18 days later when he was released by the secret police for the second time.
At the resumption of his trial in a case brought against him by the Nigerian Government, the prosecution failed to prove accusations against him and even went ahead to dropping seven of the charges earlier preferred against him.
Groups and high-raking individuals from around the world have described the charges against Sowore as baseless and a waste of time.
The journalist remains confined to Abuja as one of his bail conditions forbids him from leaving the city or speaking with journalists until the end of his trial.