The Peoples Democratic Party has said that the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) distorted information in the recent presidential order proscribing Boko Haram and Ansaru so as to weaken the fight against insurgents.
Publicity Secretary of the party, Chief Olisa Metuh who made the revelation, accused the ACN of using the press as a subterfuge to hide its support for insurgents and whittle down current effort by the federal government to end acts of terrorism in Nigeria.
The ACN had issued a statement claiming that the order violates the constitution and infringed on press freedom, but the PDP views the statement as nothing but deliberate distortion of facts.
“Our attention has been drawn to a statement sponsored by the opposition Action Congress of Nigeria in which in its usual homage to falsehood, deceit and distortion of facts, tried to suggest that the recent order by President Goodluck Jonathan proscribing the groups engaged in acts of terrorism violates the constitution and aimed at stiffing the press. This deliberate distortion of facts clearly betrays the ACN’s support for such groups as well as the heinous attempts to whittle efforts by the Federal government and well-meaning Nigerians to end insurgency in the country”, Metuh said adding that there is no section of the said order that stifled the press, violated or seeks to violate any provision of the constitution.
According to him, the order reinforced provisions of the constitution, guaranteeing the security and welfare of all Nigerians. He pointed out that the section 5(1) of the order which the ACN is kicking against prescribes a term of imprisonment of not less than 20 years for any person who knowingly in any manner directly or indirectly solicits or renders support for the commission of an act of terrorism or to a terrorist group.
He said the ACN is feverish because the order defined support to include incitement to commit a terrorist act through the internet or any electronic means or through the use of printed materials or through the dissemination of terrorist information.
“By all indications, it is clear that neither the section nor any other section of the order for that matter infringed on the rights of Nigerians”, he said.