Inibehe Effiong, one of the lawyers advocating the release of Omoyele Sowore from custody of the Department of State Services (DSS), says “despite using taxpayers money to treat ear infection abroad”, President Muhammadu Buhari does not listen to the cries of the people.
In 2016, the presidency had announced that Buhari would proceed on a 10-day vacation to the United Kingdom to seek medical attention for “persistent ear infection”.
Speaking at a stakeholders’ meeting on corruption organised by ActionAid Nigeria in Uyo, Akwa Ibom state capital, on Thursday, Effiong criticised the president for backtracking on his electoral promise of stopping medical tourism abroad.
“The worst disease affecting our nation today is corruption But the good news is that this disease is not incurable,” he said.
“Today, we have a president, who as part of his election campaign, made a promise to Nigerian that the era of going overseas for medical treatment will be over. Unfortunately today, the president is on record for going to the UK to treat infection.
“Despite using Nigeria tax payers’ money to treat ear infection, the president is not hearing the cries of the people.
“The government, as part of election winning strategy, claimed that it was sharing $322.5 million of Abacha loot to Nigerians. I don’t know how they define poor Nigerians.
“You know what worries me most, when the government said they were sharing Abacha loot to poor Nigerians, up till today, the list of beneficiaries have not been disclosed. You cannot use corruption to fight corruption.”
The DSS arrested Sowore on Saturday over a planned nationwide protest.
The secret police had asked a federal high court in Abuja to grant it 90 days to detain Sowore but the court subsequently approved 45 days.