The Governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose, has dared the Federal Government to carry out the alleged plot of preventing him from travelling out of the country.
Stating that state governors were not appendages of the president, Fayose said as a leading opposition figure in Nigeria, he could not be cowed by President Muhammadu Buhari and his agents.
He added that whenever he wished to travel out of Nigeria, he would do so in the full glare of the public.
The governor spoke while reacting to a report that two governors – one from the South-West and another from the South-South had been placed on travel ban on the President’s order.
He said that the President and the Department of State Services would be disgraced the same way they were disgraced when the DSS invaded the Ekiti State House of Assembly, arresting the members of the assembly indiscriminately.
His Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, who addressed journalists on behalf of the governor, said he was not surprised or disappointed by this latest plot because the Buhari government had no respect for the constitution, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
Olayinka said he was, however, amazed that the “dangerous dimension of compelling a sitting governor that enjoys immunity like the President to obtain clearance from the Director General of the DSS before travelling out of Nigeria can ever be contemplated.”
He said Fayose had no option than to alert the public to the new dictatorial plot to infringe on his constitutional rights because of his critical position on the President’s dictatorial tendencies.
He said, “The question is, if Governor Fayose has become a threat to the security of Nigeria just because he criticises President Buhari and says the truth about his mismanagement of the country, is this not a confirmation that the President hates dissenting views?
Citing Section 35(1) and 41(1) of the 1999 Constitution, Article 13 (1) of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 12 (2) of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, Olayinka contended that it was wrong to hinder the movement of anyone without a valid court order.
“President Buhari and his agents should also be mindful of the fact that under a federal system of government, the states and Federal Government both enjoy some autonomy, with sovereign power formally divided between the Federal Government and the states such that each state retains some degree of control over its internal affairs.
“Therefore, the President of Nigeria cannot lord himself over any state governor and President Buhari and his agents should accept this basic reality and stop behaving as if they own Nigeria in totality. President Buhari and his agents, especially his kinsman, Alhaji Lawal Daura of the DSS, need to purge themselves of this blood of dictatorship running in their veins and be guided by the constitution of Nigeria.”