The Southern Kaduna People’s Union (SOKAPU) has alleged that the Department of State Services, DSS is planning to silence renowned Sokoto Catholic Bishop Mathew Kukah.
Naija News understands that Kukah has been a critic of President Muhammadu Buhari administration, and his comment during the Yuletide was taken as offensive by the incumbent government.
Kukah had berated the incompetence of the All Progressive Congress, APC, government in dealing with the insecurity challenges bedevilling the country.
Reacting to the cleric’s series of comments lately, he was invited for questioning by the secret police.
However, SOKAPU has observed that notable Nigerians who were invited by the DSS in a similar way were being silenced.
In a statement made available to newsmen on Monday (today), National Youth Leader of SOKAPU, Issac John Sirjay, admonished the Christian leader not to respond to the invite by the DSS, pointing that the invite is a plot to silence him over his comments in recent times.
The union insists that Kukah should ignore the invitation to avoid falling victim as some other persons who have suffered the same fate, Naija News reports.
The group mentioned former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Dr Obadiah Mailafia as a victim of DSS invitation.
SOKAPU said: “It observed how the operations in recent times extended invitations to some people who had at one time or the other accepted invitations, particularly persons considered to be critical of the nepotistic and clandestine leadership style of the Buhari administration.
“We mourned the sudden demise of Dr Obadiah Mailafia of blessed memory who until his death was a dogged critic of this administration and a regular visitor at one of the DSS facilities,” the statement said.
SOKAPU urged the DSS to focus on the ravaging impact of insecurity, kidnapping and banditry across the country rather than distracting the Bishop whose comments are only pointing out the obvious security challenges in the country.
It added: “It is unfortunate to note that with the recent declaration of bandits as terrorists by President Buhari, we had anticipated an invitation from the DSS to the likes of Sheikh Gumi who has always fronted and still fronts for terrorist bandit groups but the reverse is, however, the case.
“In light of the above, it suffices to state boldly that the DSS has unarguably deviated from its core mandate of protecting national security and has become a willing tool for the suppression of free speech.”
It further called for an independent investigation into the activities of the DSS with a view to making the institution and its mode of operations in line with global best practices.
In another news earlier, a group of Christian youths under the aegis of the Christian Association of Nigeria (Youth Wing) has reacted to an invitation of the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Matthew Kukah, for questioning by the Department of State Service, DSS.
Naija News reports that YOWICAN President, Belusochukwu Enwere, in a statement issued on Sunday, said the Catholic Bishop has committed no offence to warrant his invitation for questioning.
Enwere said that Bishop Kukah’s comment on the state of the nation and critics of the Buhari government was right.
The YOWICAN president said the incumbent government should channel its energy in the fight against terrorism and liberate the country against all forms of criminal activities.
The group vowed that it will mobilise Christian youths across the country to answer the DSS invitation of Bishop Kukah, noting that the secret police have not only invited the cleric but the entire believers.