Former lawmaker representing Kaduna Central Senatorial District at the National Assembly, Shehu Sani, has described the incessant clampdown on opposition by the Nigerian Government as an invitation to violence.
He noted that the government had the responsibility of respecting citizens’ rights by allowing them to express their views on national issues through peaceful protests.
He disclosed this at the weekend in Abuja during an interactive forum organised by the Nigeria Union of Journalists Correspondents Chapel.
The lawmaker said that citizens could be compelled to be violent instead of peaceful when they are being prevented from expressing their opinion through legitimate and peaceful protests.
Sani said, “If people are desirous of protecting and defending their freedom through peaceful protest, the state has the constitutional responsibility to respect their rights and protect them to express their views.
“If you crush dissent and jail dissenters, you are forcing people to take the road of violence.
“Sowore has not done anything wrong. He contributed his own quota to the emergence of this government and I cannot be mistaken to say many of those occupying position of power today in this government went to New York and met Sowore on many occasion to help them fight the former government.
“How do you turn and say the same person who spoke on justice and freedom five years ago is now the enemy. That is totally unacceptable.”