A human rights lawyer, Tope Akinyode, has faulted the arrest of a 32-year-old man, Kabiru Mohammed, suspected to be the mastermind of a video purported to be that of a wedding between the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd) and two female ministers.
Akinyode described Mohammed’s arrest as a monumental abuse of public office and an indirect affront on citizens’ liberty to engage government without restraint.
The Public Relations Officer of the Department of State Services, Dr Peter Afunaya, had on Friday confirmed the arrest of the suspect who was paraded at the DSS headquarters in Abuja.
The fake video, which went viral on social media between August and October 2019, allegedly showed guests dancing at a wedding ceremony between the President and two female members of his cabinet, Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed and Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq,
While parading the suspect, Afunaya had explained that the service received a petition from Ahmed on October 11, requesting an investigation to unravel the brains behind the embarrassing video and their possible motive(s).
He stated that after months of discreet investigations, officials of the agency apprehended Mohammed, who had allegedly confessed to initiating, creating and circulating the fake and embarrassing video.
But Akinyode, in a statement, said, “Under the Nigerian jurisprudence, libel or defamation could indeed be criminal. However, the position of the law is that in order to prove criminal libel or criminal defamation, the misdeed of the suspect must be such that is capable of creating widespread public unrest or instigating a threat to national security.