The Peoples Democratic Party has described as unacceptable the Monday’s directive by the President-elect, Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to bar the African Independent Television from covering his activities, saying the suppression of the media under any guise portends danger to the nation’s democracy.
PDP National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Olisa Metuh, in a statement in Abuja on Tuesday, said after carefully studying the defence posited by Buhari’s campaign spokesperson as well as the statement by the APC to cover and mitigate his posture, the PDP and indeed all lovers of democracy were persuaded that the action was not only unjustifiable, but also unconstitutional and completely against the spirit of liberty and the rule of law in a democracy.
He said, “The PDP, as a party that has nurtured the nation’s democracy in the past 16 years, cannot afford to fold its arms and watch the constitutional rights, media freedom and personal liberty of Nigerians, the basic tenets of democracy, being demolished.
“We ask: is this a beginning of the feared erosion of the freedom and personal liberty the media and Nigerian citizens have been enjoying in the last 16 years under the PDP led-administration?
“Has our dear nation finally fallen into the clutches of totalitarianism and impunity, where government actions will be based on egocentric decisions and impulses of individuals rather than the rule of law?
“While we assure the President-elect of our resolve to run a mature and responsible opposition based on issues, we are disturbed by this emerging development and reassure the Nigerian people that we will continue to stand with them on issues of democracy and freedom at all times.
“Perhaps, we need to remind General Buhari that part of the challenges of his new position, even as President-elect, is that he has lost his private life, which is now subject to public scrutiny and media interrogation, as required of the custodian of the mandate of the Nigerian people.”
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