The Oasis Reporters
August 25, 2018
Femi Fani-Kayode, Nigeria’s former Aviation Minister and spokesman to former President Olusegun Obasanjo is one of the few openly vocal opposition activists of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP. He was reported to have shrugged his shoulders when he received a police invitation to make himself available “to interview Commissioner of Police Habu A. Sani”, through Superintendent of Police, Usman Garba in an investigation in which his name featured.
The letter reads thus:
“Re: CONSPIRACY, CRIMINAL DEFAMATION, INCITING PUBLICATION, INJURIOUS FALSEHOOD AND CONDUCT LIKELY TO CAUSE BREACH OF PEACE
This office is investigating the above mentioned reported to the Inspector-General of Police, in which your name featured.
2. In view of the above, you are kindly requested to interview the undersigned through SP Usman Garba, on 28/08/2018 by 1000hrs, to shed light on the allegations raised.
3. You are to however note, that the invitation is purely for fact findings and your cooperation in this regard is highly solicited.
CP HABU A. SANI psc,fca
COMMISSIONER OF POLICE,
IGP MMONITORING UNIT
Femi Fani – Kayode is no stranger to security cells. He once spent some considerable time in the hands of State Security who were said to be investigating the matter of election campaign funds and the sources of the funds. Kayode came out of the harrowing experience to start granting media interviews that shed some embarrassing light on what happens behind closed cells.
The Nigerian federal government, eager to portray a human rights clean image to the global community ahead of a crucial vote next year, 2019 gets mildly irritated when government critics get’s on it’s nerves with critical interviews and scathing publications that tend to portray the bad side of government. But then, that is the work of the opposition who hope to replace the government of President Muhammadu Buhari by next year. When this happens, the government gets nervous and jumpy, so they devise several means including “friendly” police invitations or outright intimidation to cow and silence opposition figures into silence. Such tactics worked with the former PDP spokesman, Oliseh Metuh who was handcuffed and taken to court. He has since remained silent.
So far, such tactics have not worked with Mr. Kayode, against all odds of his upper class upbringing since the age of 7 in England, attending the same schools with the children of the English ruling class. Despite that background, he settles down pretty quickly in any Nigerian security cell. He’s a lawyer and can very well speak for himself and others.
It is unlikely that Mr. Kayode would be held by the Police for long. Ever since the dizzying sack of the dreaded Mr. Lawan Daura who ordered a team of masked secret service operatives to cordon off and besiege the country’s parliament and the international uproar it caused, added to the humiliating dismissal Mr. Daura received from then Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, Security big guns are treading carefully. For if a kinsman and close confidant of the president can be fired from office through an unexpected source, “anything can happen” to their careers.
Therefore they may not want to risk it by attacking or abusing Kayode’s human rights unneccesarily. Hopefully.