Press is the conscience and voice of the people, it plays and optimises its role in an atmosphere of complete freedom, an atmosphere where ideas, information and opinions are expressed freely without intimidation, fear or favor. Unfortunately this atmosphere can never be guaranteed by any form of dictatorship whatsoever.
This condemnable action by the Nigerian Army is best described as anti democratic. The modern Hitler, Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria, in his endless quest to crush the Biafra restoration quest, ordered the Nigerian Army to confiscate newspapers that has any Biafra related article in it. This millitary invasion on the press, and vendors in Aba, Abia State, is totally against everything democracy stands for.
According to the source, fear gripped the residence of Aba as soldiers from 144 Battalion under Ohafia 14 Brigade stormed saint micheal`s road Aba, in two hilux vans and seized newspapers carrying Biafra report as well as confiscated some copies both unsold and new editions of new Republic, vesym, freedom journal and Authority.
This clampdown on press and right to information is totally uncalled for and can be termed an infringement and violation of human rights.
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This can only occur in an univilized country like Nigeria, whose president cum head of state, derives joy in hurting innocent people, all in his bid to keeping Nigeria one at all cost. There is no tangible reason to justify this wicked act by Nigerian Army towards the newspaper vendors as they were neither violent, while on the contrary, they were simply out to eek a living for themselves and family. One would assume that the millitary should be somewhere in Sambisa forest fighting Boko Haram, but the sympathetic Boko haram sponsor, Muhammadu Buhari, has succeeded in diverting their much needed attention from such endeavour and now prefer using them for his selfish purposes.
If it were to be in a civilised country, these Nigerian soldiers would have been sanctioned for this dastard act of theirs, but then Nigeria is nothing close to civility. These army officers are guilty of assault, harassment and infringement of one's right to information, and as such we are becknoning on civilised world leaders to call them to order before its masses are taken back to the stone age.
Freedom of expression and press, are the rights of all citizens to express their feelings freely and openly has only those limitations necessary to protect the rights of society. Soldiers have the same basic rights, these rights must, however, be consistent with good order, discipline and national security. Soldiers who demonstrate in a manner prohibited by AR 600_20 maybe subjected to disciplinary action.
The duties and responsibilities of soldiers ends in protecting the lives and properties of the citizenry from harm and external aggression, not to harass vendors , molest or kill civilians agitating for self determination.
Going back to history, the Buhari millitary regime that started on December 31,1983 was obviously dictatorial. One would have thought that he is a changed man riding under its political banner, CHANGE. But obviously, that is not the case. The press that operated under it at the time operated with fear. Last year 2015, he had hardly taken his oath of office when he openly declared that he would tamper with the freedom of the press. According to Stephen Aderogba, Buhari's anger stemmed from what he termed the "raw deal" he got from the press over N2.5 billion scandal when he was the minister of petroleum, therefore he accused the press of "recklessness".
Buhari's regime doesn't welcome any question raised by the press. Buhari hated the press from day one, he is a hater of truth. He can go the extra mile to prevent truth from resurfacing, including threatening any press man or woman that will write any article against him. His excessive hunger for power and killing is mind boggling. It beat my imagination that Buhari, who is popularly known to be an embodiment of corruption, suddenly claim to be fighting corruption, this indeed is a fallacy.
Related Article:NIGERIAN ARMY CONFISCATES NEWSPAPERS WITH BIAFRA REPORTS AND BAN VENDORS
From medieval times, the hallmark of dictatorship anywhere in the world is to whip every segment into a streamlined position of their choice, held rigid with "Iron Bars" and any deviant means, either by way of thought, speech, act, opinion or behavior expressed privately, publicly or secretly. Its victim is summarily crushed using various instruments of intimidation and coercion such as imprisonment, physical assault, confiscation and destruction of properties up to death penalty.
This is exactly what Buhari is upholding against Biafrans, using Nigerian soiders and Dss as his tool to fight Biafrans when he (Buhari) has made it clear that the emergence of Biafra is intolerable even under his democratic rule during his recent interview with Aljazeera Television. Would Buhari then order or mandate his soldiers to ban lijezeera since they have in their possession the evidence of the video clip of Aba massacre? Can Buhari equally remove Biafra from the minds of millions of Biafrans all over the world? Would he (Buhari) ban Internet and its users from reading news about Biafra? Can he possibly ban Pope who recently recognized and mentioned Biafra to desist? Would he as well ban the whites supporting the restoration of the sovereign state of Biafra? It is very obvious that Buhari and his cohorts can't kill the ideology. They can continue their clampdown, but Biafra will always rise higher until it is restored.
By Anyikwa kelechi cynthia
Edited And Published By Nwosu C.S
By Biafra Writers