The five worshippers who were harassed and manhandled by the DSS officials had also been without food or sleep since Sunday in the DSS custody.
Some human rights activists wearing #BuhariMustGo T-Shirts who were arrested at the Dunamis International Gospel Centre (Glory Dome), Abuja, on Sunday, were whisked away on the orders of the state Director of the Department of State Services in the Federal Capital Territory.
SaharaReporters learnt that the five worshippers who were harassed and manhandled by the DSS officials had also been without food or sleep since Sunday in the DSS custody.
SaharaReporters had on Monday reported that the DSS initially denied the whereabouts of the arrested activists, but it was gathered that 24 hours after their arrest, their friends, family members and lawyers could not reach them.
This initially fuelled fears that the Dunamis church detained them secretly at an unknown location.
“DSS denies receiving activists from church security officials, and 24 hours after illegal arrest and detention by Dunamis church, we don’t know the whereabouts of these #BuhariMustGo activists,” one of the sources had said.
SaharaReporters had on Sunday reported that about ten activists went to the church on Sunday morning to worship at the church but some of them were surprisingly rounded up and arrested by the church security guards who later handed them over to the DSS operatives.
Some of the activists were whisked away in a Hilux van and two power bikes.
SaharaReporters learnt on Tuesday that the state director of the DSS in the FCT was the mastermind of the arrest and detention of the activists.
“The five activists arrested at Dunamis are being detained by DSS director of FCT. They have been deprived of food and sleep since arrest,” a top source revealed.
The activists had been manhandled and beaten by the DSS operatives on the church premises, who also seized their mobile phones.
Paul Enenche is the Senior Pastor of the church.
A source had said, "About 10 activists decided to attend Dunamis church in their #BuhariMustGo T-shirts. The church asked all first-timers to come out for prayers. The patriotic citizens obeyed the clarion call from the altar with their fully displayed BuhariMustGo shirts.
“They were immediately apprehended by the church security on their way out of the church and subsequently handed to the DSS. Kudos to the courageous activists for this creativity; I'm certain if the activists had worn a shirt with the inscription 'Sai Buhari', they would have ranked as Pastor Enenche's new best friend.”
Human rights’ activists, Omoyele Sowore and Deji Adeyanju, had met with Enenche over the arrest of six activists.
The activists arrived at the church around 3:00pm alongside their lawyer, Barrister Abubakar Marshal, and had a closed-door meeting with the pastor where it was confirmed that the arrest was made by DSS operatives and not the church security officials.
Adeyanju had said, "There is something the pastor said which I must re-emphasise here, that they did not like the fact that the activists came and were making noises here but that he doesn't want this thing to be misconstrued to mean it is the church that is sponsoring the protest."
While clarifying the matter, Sowore said the pastor denied claims by some persons that the activists were trying to disrupt the church service.
“We are adults and if we are tired of the system and we say the system must collapse, it is our right to express ourselves freely. I told the pastor when he said he was not happy when the activists were trying to protest within the premises that with the way things are going on, more and more people will be wearing #BuhariMustGo T-shirts to the church because people are tired of Buhari regime.
"We have a respectable agreement and some disagreements over this issue but what is important to me and why I don't want to drag this for too long is the release of these individuals from detention.
"We are going to wait till evening because we requested that they should be released today (Monday). Nobody knows their whereabouts. We don't know whether they have been fed or they have been tortured," Sowore had said.