#FreeDawisu: Outrage over mysterious ‘disappearance’ of Ganduje’s aide

By Alao Abiodun

Nigerians have expressed mixed reactions over the disappearance, arrest and sacking of Salihu Tanko Yakasai popularly known as ‘Dawisu’, immediate past Special Adviser on Media to Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje of Kano State

Nairalovers had reported Salihu Tanko Yakasai was sacked on Saturday following his criticism of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration over increasing insecurity

The state information commissioner, Muhammad Garba, said Tanko-Yakassai was relieved of his appointment for “unguarded comments and utterances.”

Nairalovers learnt Dawisu was reportedly whisked away on Friday in Kano hours after he tweeted that the Buhari-regime should secure Nigerians or resign.

While the whereabouts of Tanko-Yakasai is unknown, Tanko Yakasai’s father who is a founding member of Arewa Consultative Forum and elder statesman, said his son was on his way to a barber shop when he was arrested.

Dawisu’s sack is the final straw that broke the camel’s back having been suspended for the same reason of criticising the Buhari-led government during the #EndSARS protest.

With over 40,000 tweets, Nigerians took to social media to trend #FreeDawisu calling for his release.

“We condemn the unlawful arrest of journalist Salihu Tanko Yakasai simply for peacefully exercising his right to freedom of expression. Nigerian authorities should stop shutting up critics. Authorities must immediately and unconditionally release Mr Yakasai,” SERAP tweeted.

The presidential candidate of African Action Congress in the 2019 general elections Omoyele Sowore, said, “#FreeDawisu Lawless DSS has arrested @dawisu for freely expressing his views regarding the failure of the @MBuhari’s govt. The DSS lazy leadership can’t help Nigerians facing insecurity but only ready and happy to pounce on Nigerians critical of the failing regime #BuhariMustGo”

Ex-aide to former President Goodluck Jonathan, Reno Omokri, “Dear @Dawisu, I just read about your so-called sack by @GovUmarGanduje You have not been SACKED. You have been FREED. To be sacked by a man caught on video stuffing bribes in dollars into his babanriga is freedom. Honesty is not needed in @OfficialAPCNg”

@Mohnice_ on Twitter said, “Ganduje aide dawisu, was arrested & taken to Abuja from Kano. Appointees ve conscience too & only an inhumane heart keeps mute while things deteriorate. First, he was suspended, recalled & now arrested! Posterity will surely remember Dawisu in the right side of history #FreeDawisu”

Social media commentator, Japhet Omojuwa, said, “Citizen @Dawisu criticised his own party & disappeared & we thought he had been killed or kidnapped. That reminds me of Hitler, not justice. That’s the game under fascism, not democracy. If you support this, keep it going. You will live long to enjoy it too #FreeDawisu!!!”

Satirist, lawyer and novelist @elnathan_john said, “We will say #FreeDawisu. We will say it on the record while we recognise his being a part of the rotten regime that has turned what should be a democracy into a military dictatorship, from governors to the Federal Government. Dawisu has the RIGHT to speak and not be disappeared.

“Because human rights are for everyone, even those who do bad things. Human rights and free speech are not rewards for good behavior. They are FUNDAMENTAL, inalienable rights for every single person. And for this we say, #FreeDawisu. Stop the enforced disappearances in Nigeria.”

Convener of Concerned Nigerians Group, Deji Adeyanju said “I’m just so angry. So, people can no longer criticize the Govt in their own country but you guys can be meeting terrorists and giving them VIP treatment. #FreeDawisu”

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