Publisher of Sahara Reporters, Omoyele Sowore, on Tuesday, gave an account of his experience during his four months detention by the Department of State Security in 2019.
He revealed how the late life patron of the Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria, Ismaila Isa Funtua, along with three other persons visited him during his detention to negotiate his freedom with the Administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
READ OMOYELE SOWORE’S ACCOUNT BELOW POSTED ON HIS FACEBOOK PAGE:
“After spending two weeks in DSS detention 2019, one afternoon I was called downstairs, early. Upon reaching the office of the two senior officers saddled with my detention, I was accompanied to the office of the Director Operations. a few minutes later there was this towering figure in white dress arriving with a delegation.
“It was Isa Funtua (now late) accompanied by Vanguard publisher Sam Amuka, Buhari’s spokesman, Garba Shehu and Nduka Obaigbena, owner of THISDAY and ARISEtv.
“I was meeting all these men for the first time in my life. They said they had come (to) discuss my freedom from detention, while I thanked them for their kind intervention.
“I made it clear that it was wrong to come meet with me in detention without first consulting with my lawyer, Femi Falana. We (were) already in court challenging my unjust detention, but Isa-Funtua, haughty and condescending, was dismissive.
“He started berating my lawyer, claiming he’s only “grandstanding” and to me, he stated with a note of finality, “you can’t defeat the government.”
“I was enraged, and told him, Well, you are about (to) find out that the people can defeat any government, no matter how powerful you guys think you’re.
“As we argued back and forth, Nduka (Obaigbena) intervened and took me to an ante room in the office of the DO and pleaded that I shouldn’t argue with the old man that I should just play along and get released.
“I repeated to him that I’d considered the consequences of my actions and I am not interested in negotiating my liberty with anyone.
“I asked him why he didn’t think it was necessary to contact my attorneys before embarking on such a mission, he said he will get to Femi Falana and that’s was the end of my encounter with the team.”
BADEJO ADEMUYIWA has 23 years experience as a Finance Writer, specialising in Insurance and Investigative Reporting.