An activist named Kenechukwu Okeke, has filed a criminal complaint before a Chief Magistrates’ Court in Abuja against a number of Nigerians for their involvement in the #EndSARS protests against police brutality.
In the suit, Okeke listed 38 Nigerians including the senior pastor of Daystar Church Sam Adeyemi, Falz, Aisha Yesufu, music producer Don Jazzy, Tuface Idibia, Davido, Tiwa Savage, Burna Boy, Peter and Paul Okoye, Kiki Mordi, Banky W, Joe Abah and others as defendants.
According to Okeke, the defendants through their Twitter accounts “did conspire to commit misdemeanour, to wit, promoting or acting in such a manner to assist in the promotion of unlawful assembly under the guise or composition of #EndSARS.”
Okeke claimed that the defendants “committed an offence punishable under Section 97 (2) of the Penal Code Act, C53 of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2004.”
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The claimant said the protest was aimed to “cause persons in the Federal Capital Territory to fear on reasonable grounds that such assembly needlessly and without reasonable occasion may provoke other persons tumultuously to disturb peace.”
Okeke said his properties were “egregiously destroyed by some riotous and tumultuous persons instigated by the defendants.”
He also added that he has comoutet-based evidences and facts, pointing to the culpability of the defendants in the #EndSARS protest he described as an ‘unlawful assembly’.
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The case was instituted on Monday pursuant to sections 88, 109(a), 110(1)(c) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015.
In his supporting affidavit, Okeke said the defendants played active roles in the #EndSARS protests which later became violent.
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Okeke’s suit comes weeks after a former presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Adamu Garba filed a suit at the federal high court, seeking to ban the use of Twitter in Nigeria.
Adamu claimed that #EndSARS agitators used Twitter to galvanize themselves in an undemocratic manner to oust President Muhammadu Buhari from office.
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It is believed by Nigerians that the suits are being filed by government proxies with the aim of further stifling the rights of Nigerians to freedom of expression after the two-week nationwide protest.
It will be recalled that last week, an association of governors from Nigeria’s northern region held an emergency meeting where they announced that censorship of social media was one of the most critical subjects of their deliberation.
The governors said social media was being used to threaten national security and urged the Federal Government to censor social media in the country, saying the ‘oneness of Nigeria is a non-negotiable’.