Celebrating Democracy Day without free speech is meaningless – Kaduna CAN Chairman
Chairman of the Kaduna state chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Joseph Hayan has stated that celebrating Democracy Day without freedom of expression is meaningless.
This was stated by the CAN chairman, Hayab Joseph while speaking to newsmen on Saturday.
Hayab said Nigerians cannot be going through “intimidation” and still celebrate June 12 as Democracy Day.
Recall that the federal government on June 4 suspended Twitter two days after it deleted a tweet from President Muhammadu Buhari’s handle for violating its policy.
While the government has been criticised for the action, Lai Mohammed, minister of information, said the ban on Twitter in the country does not stifle the citizens’ freedom of expression.
Hayab said that contray to what is at play in Nigeria, true democracy is characterised by rule of law and freedom of speech.
“We are simply celebrating a date set aside by government but there is no evidence of democracy worth celebrating,” he said.
“The spirit behind June 12 is supposed to make our current leaders truly democrat but what we see is governance by intimidation and creating fear in the minds of citizens.
“A true sign of democracy is the freedom citizens enjoy and respect for the rule of law which is visibly absent in the way we are been governed in this country.
“I wish government should have remembered that in few days or in the second week of June, we will have this day to be reminded to celebrate before announcing the ban on Twitter and many uncomplimentary comments about other region by the president.
“Our leaders should instead, show us that we have made progress and are no more living under pains, poverty and bond age. I can simply say that we have nothing serious to celebrate as a true or genuine symbol of democracy than just a date and a name.”
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