…but many Nigerians caution against their “hypocritical praising”
“Amnesty International expulsion from Nigeria, it will particularly be recalled, has several times been demanded by many Nigerians and the military of the country as it apparently took side with opposition thereby allegedly joining in the heating up of the polity with its slanted reports to discredit the government, its institutions and undermine the sovereignty of the country.”
The news of the release of Zainab Aliyu by Saudi Arabia authorities has been received with great relief by Reno Omokri, a former aide to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan and an ardent critic of President Muhammed Buhari.
The release has propelled Omokri, for the first time since their ouster in 2015, to praise and commend President Muhammadu Buhari.
In a tweet on Tuesday, he said: “I celebrate the @MBuhari government for securing Zainab Aliyu’s release in record breaking time.
“President Buhari is to be commended.
“Now, I urge the President to apply the same sense of urgency that he showed for Zainab towards Leah Sharibu and make #FreeLeahSharibu a reality.’’
Reno Omokri @renoomokri tweeted: “I celebrate the @MBuhari government for securing Zainab Aliyu’s release in record breaking time. President Buhari is to be commended. Now, I urge the President to apply the same sense of urgency that he showed for Zainab towards Leah Sharibu and make #FreeLeahSharibu a reality”.
Also Amnesty International (AI), an international organisation, that has been having a running battle with authorities, especially with Nigerian security agencies, also commended Nigeria for securing the release of Zainab.
Amnesty International Nigeria tweeted: “A welcomed development that Zainab Habibu Aliyu is free. But that is not enough, more needs to be done to ensure freedom of all Nigerians held by Saudi Arabia’s flawed judicial system’’.
AI had on Monday called on Saudi Arabia to free Aliyu.
In its tweet, it said: “Saudi Arabian authorities must free Zainab Habibu Aliyu. Her ordeal shows everything wrong with death penalty. Let us raise our voices, until Zainab is free. No one knows who can be the next victim of such injustice. #FreeZainab #Nigeria #ZainabIsInnocent’’
Both Omokri and AI have however been mocked by their praises of President Buhari as most Nigerians who have seen them as avowed enemies of the President’s government say their intention for the praises is tainted with hypocrisy.
One of the sources that spoke on this said they said nothing but hypocrisy.
“Just read Reno Omokri deeply, he said, Buhari should apply the same sense of urgency that he showed for Zainab towards Leah Sharibu and make her release a reality. That in itself is clear hypocrisy trying to paint the President in the light of a sectional leader who worked to release Zainab but left, according to his insinuation, Leah, a Christian,” he said.
On Amnesty International, he said, “Whenever you hear any of AI, Femi Fani-Kayode, Remo Omokri say any seeming positive about Nigeria, Buhari or common citizens, don’t glorify because, you will regret you ever did. All that Amnesty International is trying to prove is that Saudi Arabia is wrong ensuring equity in its justice system. Is Saudi the only country issue death penalty? Nigeria does, America, which funds these guys, does. Then what is the hypocrisy about?” He asked.
Amnesty International expulsion from Nigeria, it will particularly be recalled, has several times been demanded by many Nigerians and the military of the country as it apparently took side with opposition thereby allegedly joining in the heating up of the polity with its slanted reports to discredit the government, its institutions and undermine the sovereignty of the country.
Saudi Arabian authorities released Zainab Aliyu, a student of Maitama Sule University, Kano, who was arrested for alleged drug trafficking, when it got convincing proofs she was innocent. Also released was Ibrahim Abubakar.
Zainab was arrested since Dec. 25, 2018.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, disclosed this at a news conference in Abuja on Tuesday.
He said the government has been able to establish the innocence of Zainab and the second Nigerian involved in the case, Ibrahim Abubakar.
Both accused, he said, would be released tomorrow to the Nigerian Mission in Saudi Arabia.
There had been several calls for their release with President Muhammadu Buhari directing the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, to swiftly intervene and secure her immediate release.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Diaspora Affairs Abike Dabiri-Erewa had assured Nigerians that they were making good progress and she will be back, along with 2 others in the same situation.
Zainab was arrested after a banned drug, Tramadol, was found in her bag, but claimed it was planted in her luggage by unknown persons.
The student had reportedly travelled from Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport in company with her mother, Mrs. Maryam Aliyu, and sister, Hajara Aliyu.
Zainab was accused of entering Saudi Arabia with an illegal dosage of Tramadol.
Reports indicate the she was a victim of a cartel that specialised in keeping hard drugs in travellers’ bags, some of whom were already in the custody of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency.
In Kano on Tuesday, some students of Yusuf Maitama Sule University, her school, protested against her arrest and detention.