President Muhammadu Buhari has been sending emissaries to pressure Omoyele Sowore to abandon his RevolutionNow protest as a condition for his release.
Sowore was arrested in August after planning to protest against Buhari on poor governance.
The court had on two occasions granted the activist’s bail but the Department of States Services (DSS) refused to comply.
Initially, the agency claimed there was no one to release Sowore to, then later switched gear that it was conducting background checks on his sureties.
However, on Saturday, Premium Times reports that Mr Buhari has made two attempts to convince Sowore to abandon his protest and negotiate for peace as a condition for his release
The Publisher of Sahara Reporters reportedly rejected both attempts, describing the moves as extra-judicial and self-serving, adding that he would not be a party to a move to abuse his fundamental rights and a brazen disregard for the judicial authority.
This buttress the belief that Buhari was aware of the flagrant disregard of the court order by the agency, perhaps, on his order.
The Online medium listed a close policial associate of the President Isa Funtua; the Publisher of Vanguard Newspapers Sam Amuka; Publisher of Thisday Newspapers Nduka Ogbaigbena and his two presidential spokespeople Femi Adesina and Garba Shehu as part of the emissaries.
The first team included Messrs Funtua, Amuka, Shehu and Obaigbena, sources said.
“The first meeting took place in the office of SSS director of operations, ” according to Premium Times report.
“The group met Mr Sowore and said they came on behalf of the president to negotiate for peace.”
The source added that Sowore blatantly refused, saying “all he wants is justice.”
Another source reportedly said Sowore’s insistence on his revolution infuriated the team, including Shehu.
Also angry was the head of the SSS, Yusuf Bichi who angrily ordered his continued detention while making him incommunicado.
“Mr Sowore had threatened to inform his lawyer, Femi Falana, of Mr Buhari’s moves, leading the SSS chief to deprive him of all forms of contact with anyone outside the facility” Premium times reports.
When reportedly contacted, Mr Funtua, said, “I went to meet him (Sowore) with Sam Amuka, Nduka Obaigbena and some others. We were there for two hours to discuss with him that there was no need to be grandstanding with his lawyers.”
“You cannot fight the government. You cannot fight the establishment. You cannot do anything to the establishment. But for an individual, it is a different case and we do not want anyone to suffer for too long, that is why we are trying to find a solution to the matter.”
This is not the first time the President has sent people to make peace with Sowore.
While vacationing in London, according to a source, Buhari made an attempt on Sowore.
“This one was led by Femi Adesina,” the source said. “Again, he refused to even see Mr Adesina, saying he cannot negotiate with them under any circumstances, especially since he has been granted bail.”
To further punish him for rejecting yet another presidential delegation, Mr Sowore was denied access to his letters and rarely allowed to take fresh air.
“The restrictions were later briefly relaxed and Mr Sowore was able to speak with Premium Times from custody on November 14. The phone with which he spoke with this newspaper was immediately seized even though it was given to him by the SSS which discreetly monitored his communications.” According to