The Abuja Integrity Group (AIG) has called on the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) to expedite the release of Mallam Ibrahim Tanko, the Chief of Staff of the Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) Chairman.
Tanko, according to the group, was arrested on his way to represent the AMAC Chairman, Hon. Abdullahi Adamu Candido, at a conference of the United Cities and Local Government of Africa (UCLGA) in South Africa based on alleged mistaken identity.
The group said information available to it indicates that the DIA arrested Tanko based on the similarity of his name with that of a suspected member of ISIS on the Interpol watch list.
However, AIG in a statement on Thursday by it’s Publicity Secretary, Jamilu Mohammed, stated that the continued detention of Ibrahim Tanko without proof of his association with ISIS and without prosecution violates his fundamental human rights.
The group also frowned at how the situation is providing fertile ground for the peddling of fake news about money laundering, which is now being impugned as part of the reasons for his detention.
“Attempts are also being made to link the fake news with the Chairman of the Abuja Municipal Area Council, Hon. Abdullahi Adamu Candido, in a bid to discredit his good image and person,” the statement noted.
While noting that money laundering allegations against the AMAC Chairman are baseless, but intended at smearing his name and dent his record, the group said his performance are clearly unrivalled in the history of the council.
“As an Integrity Group, we cannot afford to stand aside and watch ill-advised politicians attempting to use fake news to misinform the populace and misdirect them into making wrong choices,” the statement said.
Using the opportunity to caution politicians to be disciplined in their utterances, the group said it believes violence which has become associated with Nigerian politics, can be avoided if politician avoid politics of desperation.