Two members of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Gombe State, Mr. Atiku Boza-Boza and Mr. Adamu Babale, have been detained in prison following their arraignment in court for allegedly insulting Governor Inuwa Yahaya of the ruling All Peoples Congress (APC).
The two politicians were detained on the orders of an Area Court following their arraignment on allegations of “conspiracy and intentional insult”, according to court papers.
Mr Boza-Boza, a personal assistant to former Gombe State governor, Ibrahim Dankwambo was earlier detained at Pantami Division of the metropolis while AdamuBabale who went to the police station to secure the bail of his fellow party man was also detained.
The two were then arraigned before the Area Court inPantami in handcuffs on a charge of conspiring to abuse Mr Yanaya.
The police accused the two PDP stalwarts of calling the governor “leader of promise breakers” according to the Police’s First Information Report (FIR).
The alleged offence, according to the charge sheet, is contrary to Section 96 and 155 of the Penal Code Law.
The two politicians were docked before the court recently, on a day declared as work-free for all courts in the state.
The state acting chief judge, MuazuPindiga, had issued a circular dated February 24, 2020, directing all courts in the state to close down on February 26th and 27th 2020.
Reports claimed that the holiday, according to a government circular was to ensure the “smooth running of the commissioning exercise of the new Court of Appeal Gombe Division”.
But despite the holiday, the two suspects were taken before the court in what the opposition leaders in the state said was a premeditated action. However, sources close to the seat of power claimed that the governor knew nothing about the plight of the two PDP members.
Spokesman of the governor, AbdullahiMisilli said the claim by the detained persons as part of the antics of the opposition.
“This is not true. The governor did not order the arrest of anybody. If they have issues, it must be with another person, not the governor,” Milli said.
Gombe is the latest state to join in the harassment of social media and opposition voices over criticism of their governors.
Reports claimed that governors across the country are increasingly targeting opponents and social media users for allegedly insulting them.