DSS Confirms Tanko-Yakasai’s Arrest; Eti-Osa Bar Forum Demands His Immediate Release


By Abiola Olawale

The Department of State Services (DSS), has confirmed the arrest of Salihu Tanko-Yakasai, former aide to Abdullahi Ganduje, Governor of Kano State.

Tanko-Yakasai was sacked and arrested on Friday following his comments on President Muhammadu Buhari.

Tanko-Yakasai took to his official Twitter handle to react to the abduction of the 317 schoolgirls from the Government Girls Secondary School (GSSC), Jangebe, Zamfara State, adding that the president should tender his resignation letter, following rising insecurity nationwide.

Confirming, Peter Afunanya, DSS spokesman, in a statement on Saturday, stated that Tanko-Yakasai in the custody of the secret police.

This is coming after Alhassan Mohammed, Kano State Director of DSS, had earlier denied arresting Tanko-Yakasai, describing the report as mere rumour.

Afunanya, however, noted that Tanko-Yakasai was not arrested because of his comments on President Buhari, adding that he is been investigated over issues beyond expression of his opinion.

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The statement reads: “This is to confirm that Salihu Tanko-Yakasai is with the Department of State Services. He is being investigated over issues beyond the expression of opinions in the social media as wrongly alleged by sections of the public.”

Meanwhile, the Eti-Osa Bar forum, condemned the DSS for arresting Tanko-Yakasai, demanding for his immediate release.

This was contained in a statement signed by Oladotun Hassan, the Chairman of the forum and Ayo Ademiluyi, the Secretary of the forum.

The statement which was titled “We Demand the immediate release of Salihu Tanko-Yakasai”, condemned the violation of the fundamental rights of Tanko-Yakasai, adding that Nigerians should lend their voices in calling for good governance and genuine democratic practice in the country.

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The statement reads: “We hereby demand the immediate release of Salihu Tanko-Yakasai, who is in the custody of the Department of State Services. We are shocked that the said Salihu Tanko-Yakasai “disappeared” and it took the outcry of his father, a Frontline Northern politician for the Department of State Services to admit that he is in their custody.

“We condemn this method of “disappearance” by the Department of State Services and it spells a new low in the human rights enforcement culture in Nigeria. We are aware that Salihu Tanko-Yakasai was relieved of his appointment as the Special Adviser on Media by the Governor of Kano State, Alhaji Ganduje after tweeting on Twitter that President Muhammadu Buhari should resign if he can’t rescue the newly-abducted Zamfara schoolgirls, who have just been released at the time of issuing this statement. We are of the view that while Alhaji Ganduje has the power to terminate the appointment of Salihu Tanko-Yakasai, his subsequent arrest and detention amount to violation of his fundamental rights.

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“We are aggrieved that this culture of vendetta against the critics of President Muhammadu Buhari will only lead our nascent democracy to the abyss. We reiterate our call to all civic forces, professional associations, trade unions, youth movement and broad-based civil society organisations to join forces to raise our voices for good governance and genuine democratic practice.”

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