The NONIHRA condemns in strong terms, the arrest and incarceration of Aminu Adamu Muhammad, the 23 year old student of Federal University Dutse over frivolous allegation of defaming the character of Nigeria’s First Lady, Aisha Buhari.
In democracies, politicians and public figures must wear thick skin and allow citizens the needed atmosphere to express themselves freely without fear of intimidation.
The NONIHRA also observes with dismay, the arbitrary manner in which the victim was arrested, detained, tortured and smuggled out of this state in clear violation of the provisions of Nigeria’s Constitution and the extant criminal procedures laws.
The offense of defamation, even where proved, is no more than a simple offense for which punitive fine is awarded.
It is our firm belief therefore that the victim in this case is inequitably treated because the allegations against him involves Nigeria’s First Lady, a clear accord of advantage and privilege to the First Lady and which Nigeria’s constitution prohibits.
Against this backdrop, we call on all persons and authorities concerned to release Aminu immediately and issue him apologies and compensation forthwith.
The Nigerian lawmakers at all levels are equally required to in the advancement of the constitutional right of free speech, repeal and strike out all extant penal laws criminalizing the tort of defamation.