#EndSARS: FG compiling no-fly list on protesters, Newspaper alleges; FG denies
A news media outlet, Peoples Gazette, has alleged that authorities in the Nigerian Government is compiling a “no-fly list” on persons visibly involved in the #EndSARS protests.
The Newspaper made the allegation in a report published on Tuesday, November 3, titled “EXCLUSIVE: Federal government begins compilation of #EndSARS protesters on no-fly list“.
According to the report, the interior ministry has started singling out key members of the historic #EndSARS movement for profiling.
The Gazette cited “three officials with distinct but corroborative knowledge of the government’s plans” as it sources which gave it exclusive knowledge of the plot.
The report stated in part: “Nigerian authorities have started collating a no-fly list of ‘hundreds of Nigerians’ they suspected of energising the #EndSARS movement that loomed across the country last month, officials told Peoples Gazette on Monday, in a move that could drive a wedge of mutual suspicions in ongoing negotiations between the government and the protesters.
“Three officials with distinct but corroborative knowledge of the government’s plans told the Gazette in separate interviews on Monday that the federal interior minister was responsible for the controversial list.
“Officials did not immediately accuse the protesters of any crime, but the ministry started collating the list nearly two weeks ago, an official said, and the Gazette only became aware of its existence on Monday morning.
“Two sources at the State Security Service told the Gazette that the interior ministry, under Rauf Aregbesola, requested from the secret police whether or not it had a profile of key supporters of the protests.
“The immigration office is domiciled under the interior ministry, and a senior official said the ministry planned to forward names of “hundreds of Nigerians” who should be targeted for overseas journey.
“We told the ministry that we have not started compiling a list of the protesters because we did not get a presidential directive to do so as of that time,” the official said. “But the ministry went on on its own to start collating a list for enforcement.”
“Another SSS official attached to civil aviation told the Gazette that the list was yet to be formally circulated, but six people suspected of participating in #EndSARS were already prevented from traveling last week.
“I know six people have been prevented from travelling to Europe and Dubai because of the troubles they put the government through with their campaign against security workers,” the official said. “The immigration people are already doing their own work, but we have not received any list from the headquarters.”
It was unclear whether or not the vice-president was aware of the controversial list being compiled by the interior office. A spokesman for the president did not immediately return a request for comments Tuesday morning.
ElombahNews reported on Tuesday, that the Nigeria Immigration Service on Monday stopped one of the promoters of the #EndSARS campaign, Modupe Odele, from travelling out of the country.
This was contained in a report titled “Immigration stops #EndSARS promoter from leaving Nigeria“.
The reported noted that the officers who prevented the rights activist from travelling did not reveal the actual reason for their action. It is alleged that the action by NIS was taken based on her role in the #EndSARS protests.
Modupe Odele during the #Endsars movement used her Twitter handle, @Mochievous, to mobilise her 219,000 followers during the protests.
She also offered free legal aid to persons who were illegally arrested during the protests.
Confirming the development in a newsletter sent out on Monday, the lawyer said she was on her way to the Maldives to celebrate her birthday when she was stopped by immigration officers.
Odele said she was detained while her passport was seized by the officers, forcing her to miss her flight.
However, the Federal Government, through the Federal Ministry of Interior, has denied existence of a ‘no-fly list’ for #ENDSARS protesters.
The Federal Ministry of Interior stated this in a tweet on Tuesday, saying it is a fake news.
The Ministry tweeted:
“The Ministry of Interior did not, has not and will not generate any no-fly list. Ignore fake news, please!”
The Ministry of Interior did not, has not and will not generate any no-fly list.
Ignore fake news please! pic.twitter.com/zR65TK1uiG
— Ministry of Interior (@MinOfInteriorNG) November 3, 2020