Barring a last-minute change of plan and security reasons, the embattled African Action Congress (AAC) National Chairman, Comrade Omoyele Sowore, will make his 2023 presidential declaration, probably on Monday evening, next week.
Sources close to the party indicated that all arrangements were at the verge of being concluded when the police arrested him at the Court of Appeal premises on Thursday when a case involving the party was to be heard.
However, Sowore was reportedly released later in the day following the intervention of his lawyers, but he might be required to report to the police on Monday, tomorrow.
It was feared that the police might try to charge him in a High Court over undisclosed offences, which it was gathered might not be unconnected with reports in his online medium, SaharaReporter.
Before the police accosted him at the court premises, they had earlier reportedly swooped on a vehicle conveying some of the AAC members on their way to the court and allegedly seized their mobile phones after searching them.
Sowore, who particularly spoke on the attack and his ambition, confirmed that the brush he had with the police was because the security agents might have got wind of his plans to make his presidential declaration next week.
He said: “I have just been informed now that they’ve procured a judge to remand me in prison custody because they heard I am planning to declare my presidential ambition early next week.
“I will be bearding out shortly to meet them. I am fully prepared and very convinced that they are irreversibly heading towards self-destruction.”
He said in a special message relayed to “his friends” on Friday, “Earlier yesterday morning, a group of well-armed government-sponsored miscreants attacked our contingent, assaulted and stole their phones in the Gudu area of Abuja on our way to the Court of Appeal.
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“The case was immediately reportedly to the police, but they did nothing about it. It turned out it was part of a bigger plot, as later in the afternoon, a group of well-armed policemen accosted me outside the Court of Appeals gate in Abuja, arrested me, accusing me of ‘defamation’ over reports published by SaharaReporters, a stand-alone legal entity.
“After hours of detention, they let me leave. I have just been informed now that they’ve procured a judge to remand me in prison custody because they heard I am planning to declare my presidential ambition early next week.
“I will be bearding out shortly to meet them, I am fully prepared and very convinced that they are irreversibly heading towards self-destruction. #RevolutionNow #WeCantContinueLikeThis.”
Also, ‘Femi Adeyeye, the AAC National Publicity Secretary, who gave an update to Eaglesforesight on Sowore’s arrest and release, stated: “The present update is that he’s been re-invited by the police.
“He would be there on Monday to honour their invitation. The matter is still Ned Nwoko’s petition, even though we know that’s just a pawn.
“The main plan of the government is to hold him down so he won’t be able to declare for presidency physically, which is slated for sometime next week.”
In an earlier statement issued by Adeyeye, titled, ‘National Chairman, African Action Congress, Comrade Omoyele Sowore, Has Been Arrested,’ the party stated: “Without undue rhetoric, the Buhari regime has recorded yet again another low in its attacks against the rights of citizens to freely associate, assemble, hold opinions and freely express them.
“Earlier today, the state sent after us armed men, dressed in paramilitary regalia. It was clear that their mission was to attack the convoy and cause serious harm.
“They attacked the rear team and heavily assaulted our party members in the vehicle. These unknown armed men also took away their phones.
“Our comrades were able to scamper for safety, to later join the rest of the team at the Court of Appeal premises in Abuja.
“Just after stepping out of the court where the chairman (Sowore), party leaders and members have converged to witness the party’s case against INEC and usurpers, Mr Omoyele Sowore was arrested and driven away in a Gestapo style, very similar to how he was arrested on August 3, 2019 by men of the State Security Service (SSS).
“We can, however, confirm as at the time of releasing this statement that he is currently at the dreaded SARS Unit called ‘Abattoir’ and men from that station were the ones who carried out the arrest.
“We are monitoring these events and we can assure all members that these re-occurring illegalities and attacks won’t be allowed to stand. The specific reason(s) for his arrest remain sketchy at this time.
“Let me state for the umpteenth time that we are not oblivious of the plans of the regime to cause harm to our National Chairman, neither are we unaware of their plot to shut us out completely from the forthcoming elections through different tactics.
“But, they can only try because it is just too late. Nigerians are ready to be free and we are the most reliable alternative voice to the shenanigans of the regime. No one or system can stop an idea whose time has come.
“We call on all peace-loving Nigerians to join the call for his immediate and unconditional release both from this present arrest and the unjust, illegal and immoral city detention. Solidarity.”
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