Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo's increasingly autocratic government charged eight supporters of Vice President Atiku Abubakar (who will seek the Presidency) with belonging to an unlawful society:
The case is the latest in a series of actions by authorities against opposition groups, who say the government is becoming increasingly autocratic. Opposition figures have been arrested and labelled a threat to national security.
"You ... took membership of and managed an unlawful society known as Turaki Vanguard ... which is dangerous to the good government of Nigeria," said one of three charges read out in the Federal High Court in the capital Abuja.
Another charge said the accused gave a magazine interview "in which you described the current federal government administration as 'corrupt' which expression is expected to cause disaffection to the present government".
The arrests backfired in the press.