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Opinion

Julius Abure’s arrest could have been better handled – Peter Obi

The Presidential Candidate of the Labour Party in the 2023 general election, Peter Obi, has queried what he described as the discourteous manner in which security operatives arrested the LP National Chairman, Comrade Julius Abure, in Benin, Edo State, on Wednesday. 

Obi said the arrest could have been better handled in a way to show we are civilised and in a democracy. 

Writing on his X account, the LP standard bearer said,  “Like many Nigerians, I observed the distasteful national television news reports detailing the humiliating arrest of the National Chairman of the Labour Party, Barrister Julius Abure, earlier today in Benin City, Edo State. 

“Throughout my roles as a private individual, public figure, governor, and presidential candidate, I consistently advocated for the paramount importance of upholding the rule of law in any sane society. 

“I firmly believe that, as citizens, we are all duty-bound, irrespective of our status in society to respond to invitations from properly constituted authority.

“My stance on this matter remains unwavering but does not explain watching the distressing image of our National Chairman lying on the ground in the name of arrest. 

“This act is undesirable and unequivocally intolerable and must be condemned by any decent and civilized mind within the context of our present civic landscape in Nigeria. 

“These deplorable actions epitomize the pinnacle of rascality and serve to egregiously tarnish the already delicate perception of our nation as one plagued by lawlessness. 

“Such behavior must be not only denounced but also actively addressed to uphold the principles of justice and respect within our society.”

He further stated that, “Regarding the circumstances surrounding Mr. Abure’s arrest, it is crucial to emphasize that while constitutional authorities must be allowed to execute their statutory functions, officers must adhere to due process and established arrest procedures, embody civility, decorum, respect for the dignity and rights of citizens, and, above all, the presumption of innocence. 

“It is crucial to emphasize that as a leader within the Labour Party, Mr. Abure represents, both personally and statutorily, as the incumbent Chairman of the LP, the face of political opposition in Nigeria. It is imperative to reiterate that no pretext or subterfuge should be employed to stifle Nigeria’s political opposition. Therefore, I urge that he should be granted bail based on his status while the investigation continues.” 

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