Talking Drums

The West African News Magazine

Nigeria... Leftists Deplore Detentions

An organisation which calls itself Friends of Nigeria's Progressive Leftists has called on the Federal Military Government to release immediately from detention Messrs Babatope, Haroun Adamu and Tai Solarin. In a press statement issued in London the organisation noted that after a careful study of various government pronouncements over the issue of detainees under a new decree titled State Security (Detention of Persons) 1984, its members are convinced that unless the military regime has ulterior motives other than those concerned with issues of public accountability then these gentlemen should be released.

On Babatope they contended that he held only a party appointment as the Director of Organisation of the banned UPN, and since his office ranked next to that of the Director of Publicity held by Mr Ajuluchukwu they saw no reason why Babatope should be detained over the activities of the banned party while Mr Ajuluchukwu is left free.

They continued, "we are also aware that the UPN has a full-time treasurer and so Mr Babatope should not be held responsible for any misgivings the present regime may have over the spending policy of UPN."

On Haroun Adamu who until recently was the Managing Director of Triumph Group of Newspapers the 'progressives' pointed out that since the military Governor of Kano State was recently reported to have said that no evidence of financial malpractices have been found against him his detention was unfair and compromised the principle of natural justice.

On Tai Solarin who was also referred to as an unrepentant believer in freedom and social justice they wondered why he is being detained.

The release signed jointly by Olusegun Awonusi and Kester Olaifa Chairman and Secretary respectively of the Progressive leftists finally deplored the detentions which were described as a gross deprivation of the right of Nigerians to live in freedom and freely express their opinions.

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