The Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) has condemned the arrest of media mogul, Mr Raymond Dokpesi and other opposition elements by the APC-led Federal Government.
The party also said that it was aware that more notable PDP leaders had similarly been listed for arrest over unproven allegations pursuant to the plot by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to cow and silence opposition in Nigeria.
In a statement on Tuesday by the spokesman for the PDP, Mr Olisa Metuh, the opposition party said the military style of pronouncement of guilt on Chief Dokpesi before any fair hearing, showed he was a victim of political persecution and mob trial by the APC government because of his association with the PDP.
Mr Dokpesi was arrested on Tuesday by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
He was picked up in Abuja at about noon on Tuesday and was accompanied to the office of the EFCC by his son Raymond Dokpesi Jnr., who is the current Chairman of Daar Communications.
The Head of Media in the EFCC, Wilson Uwujaren, told Channels Television that Chief Dokpesi was arrested in connection with money disbursed from the office of the former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki.
But the PDP said his arrest was an attempt to clamp-down on opposition and the media.
“While the PDP is not against the war against corruption, we insist that the crusade must be carried out within the limits of the law and not as a guise to persecute and torture opposition elements in the country.
“Our fear is that with the pronouncement of guilt even without being giving the opportunity within his rights as a citizen to state his own side of the story, the President Buhari-led government is sidestepping the laws to ensure that Chief Dokpesi does not get justice in the court, a plot which they want to extend to other PDP leaders.
“The PDP therefore demands an open and public trial of all those arrested so that all issues and charges against them as well as their defence therein would also be in the public domain. We demand a proper investigation and lawful prosecution instead of the reprehensible resort to outright political persecution, which can only have a place in a military regime.
“We also note that this development may not be unconnected with the planned onslaught against the media, following its commitment in holding this dictatorial regime accountable since it took office,” the statement read.
The PDP further called on the international community and rights bodies worldwide to note what it called “growing impunity and gross violation of human rights by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government tailored to decimate the opposition and cow the media in Nigeria”.