Amnesty International declares Sowore and Agba Jalingo as prisoners of conscience.
Amnesty International has called on the Federal Government of Nigeria to drop its charges against the publisher of Sahara Reporters, Omoyele Sowore.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, November 20, 2019, by its programme manager, Seun Bakare, the organization says it considers Sowore and Agba Jalingo as prisoners of conscience for criticizing the government.
The organisation therefore asks the government to release the activists immediately and unconditionally.
The statement reads, “We consider Sowore, Jalingo and Bakare to be prisoners of conscience detained solely for exercising their human rights.
The Nigerian authorities must drop all charges against them and release them immediately and unconditionally.
“Sowore, Jalingo and Bakare’s continued detention is a matter of shame for Nigeria. Their cases show just how far the authorities in Nigeria can go to silence their critics.
“The government of President Muhammadu Buhari needs to stop filing bogus and politically motivated charges against critics, and start listening to what they have to say.
“The flawed charges and sham trials of Sowore, Jalingo and Bakare expose the inadequacies and bizarre manipulation of the Nigerian criminal justice system and an unacceptable contempt for the rule of law and human rights.”
Sowore was arrested on Saturday, August 3, 2019 by operatives of the Department of State Security Service. He has since been in the custody of the DSS despite court order granting his release.