The All Progressives Congress Youth Forum (APYF), on Monday night (August 8th, 2016) accused the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) of abusing its powers under the law by sending its operatives to pick up one of the Forum’s founding members, Mr. Abubakar “Abusidiq” Sidiq Usman, on charges of cyberstalking.
A statement released by EFCC earlier on Monday claimed that Abusidiq was arrested and questioned on offences that allegedly contravene the Cyber Crime Act.
In a statement signed by Olu Onemola, the National Public Relations Officer of the Forum, the APYF condemned the filing of spurious charges against Abusidiq, stating that if the EFCC’s actions was left unchecked, it could dent the institutional credibility of the financial watchdog and the perception of the adherence to the rule of law of the entire President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government.
The APYF further stated that it would be utilising all the protections and legal recourses that are available to citizens in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“We will be petitioning the Attorney General of the Federation to call the EFCC and its Chairman to order,” the APYF said, “We will [also] be filing a petition with the Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges to express our unease on the abuse of institutional powers by one of Nigeria’s leading institutions.”
The APYF also stated that it would be filing a freedom of speech fundamental rights enforcement under the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria against the EFCC and its Acting Chairman — on whose orders the armed operatives acted.
The Forum further called for the immediate and unconditional release of Abusidiq, stating that it intended to see the government fulfil its mandate to fight corruption and impunity, hence, it would be holding the government accountable for all its actions.