Attempted Murder: CORHD Condemns Illegal Arrest And Oppressive Arraignment Of Eleven Citizens By The Police In Uyo

In the evening of Thursday, September 15, 2016 we received a report of a case of indiscriminate and mass arrest of eleven (11) persons, comprising of nine (9) males and two (2) females at No. 5 Udi Street in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State by officers of the Nigeria Police Force, A Division, Uyo.

The facts available to us indicate that a certain aged woman was found within the prescient of No. 5 Udi Street in Uyo at about 2 am on Wednesday, September 14, 2016 by a private security man working at the apartment. According to reports, the said woman was a stranger and was not known to the security man before then. Upon being confronted, the strange woman reportedly explained to the security man that she came to visit her daughter who is a tenant at the apartment. Queried on what she was doing outside at such odd hour, the woman reportedly told the security man that she came outside to urinate. Dissatisfied with her explanation, the security man and about two others reportedly accused her of being a witch; they reportedly harassed and molested the woman. The woman is said to be recuperating at the hospital.

Upon returning to the apartment in the morning, the daughter of the woman who is an officer of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDS) was briefed about the incident. She went to the police and reported the matter.

The following day on Thursday, September 15, 2016 at about 12 pm, a team of armed policemen stormed the apartment and arrested every person they could lay their hands on and took them to A Division, Uyo. In all, eleven (11) persons were arrested. Among the persons arrested are five (5) staff of Motion Studios, a private music/movie recording company situated at the apartment.

The names, gender and ages of the staff are as follows:

1. Kate Augustine (female, 17); 2. Armstrong James (male, 17); 3. Joseph Bassey (male, 23); 4. Elvis Johnson (male, 23) and 5. Ubong Ime (male, 19).

None of the above five (5) persons is living at No. 5 Udi Street, Uyo where the incident took place and none was present during the incident. Business at the Motion Studios where they all work closes at about 6 pm every day.

At the police station, the eleven (11) persons were kept for hours and asked by the Investigation Police Officer (IPO), one ‘Idoko’, to “cooperate” and pay money to secure their bail. We advised the staff of Motion Studios who contacted us over the matter not to “cooperate” as illegally demanded.

The Akwa Ibom State Commissioner of Police, CP. Murtala Usman was contacted at about 7:20 pm on Thursday, September 15, 2016 and urged to intervene in the matter. The Commissioner upon being briefed over the matter directed that the five (5) staff of Motion Studios be released immediately. Accordingly, they were freed and asked by the IPO to return the following morning.

We understand that the IPO and his immediate bosses at the A Division in Uyo were visibly angry over the superior order from the Commissioner of Police and the decision of the staff of Motion Studios to reach out to a lawyer who is the Convener of Coalition of Human Rights Defenders (COHRD). The IPO pointedly declared in their presence that they may have won temporarily but that their release was not the end of the matter since they decided to involved a lawyer instead of “cooperating” with him.

Shockingly, when the staff of Motion Studios reported at the station in the morning of Friday, September 16, 2016 the IPO told them that they were going to be taken to court to be arraigned for “Conspiracy” and “Attempted Murder” of the aged woman.

All our efforts to reach out to the Commissioner of Police to stop the unwarranted arraignment proved abortive.

Thus, all the eleven (11) persons were hurriedly taken before a Chief Magistrate Court in Uyo on a holding charge of “Conspiracy” and “Attempted Murder”. They were all remanded in Prison Custody and denied bail by the court.

It should be noted that the Supreme Court of Nigeria has ruled that the practice of holding charge at the Magistrate Court is unconstitutional and has no place in our criminal jurisprudence. There is at present no statutory provision under the Criminal Procedure Law of Akwa Ibom State that empowers a Magistrate to remand accused persons in a charge like Attempted Murder which is outside its jurisdiction.

It should also be noted that the police had not conducted any sensible investigation into the alleged assault and molestation of the woman before they hurriedly arraigned the eleven (11) persons. No identification parade was conducted and no reasonable steps were taken to identify the real culprits who are said to be currently at large.

All that the Nigeria Police Force in the 21st century could do was to invade the crime scene in a commando style and effect a mass and indiscriminate arrest of every unlucky person that they could lay their hands on and charge them to court for refusing to “cooperate”.

To show the unprofessional and oppressive manner the police acted in this case, the police in a desperate effort to shield the woman’s daughter who is working with a sister agency, the NSCDC claimed that they received information about the incident through a radio message and that there is no complainant.

We call on the police to tell Nigerians who called them, the date and time they received the “radio message” and how they came to the conclusion that each of the eleven (11) persons they arrested, particularly the five (5) staff of Motion Studios were the persons who molested the aged woman?. The police should exaplain to the public how they came about the charge of “Conspiracy” and “Attempted Murder”? Who conspired with who and who attempted to murder who?

It is indeed an unprecedented record that our own Nigeria Police Force was able to conclude investigation into an alleged case of “attempted murder” within 48 hours of the alleged crime. Nobody is deceived by this despicable and condemnable show of force. Nigerians are too familiar with the police and their modus operandi to be cajoled.

It is a sad commentary that at a time the federal government is seeking ways to decongest our prisons, innocent and poor Nigerians have been sent to the Uyo Prisons over what they know nothing about simply because we have a police force that has no respect for human rights and a complacent judicial system.

We at COHRD condemn in the strongest terms the actions of the police against these innocent citizens. We urge the Akwa Ibom State Commissioner of Police to withdraw the trump-up charge against the innocent citizens and go after those who allegedly assaulted the aged woman.

We call on the Inspector General of Police to look into this matter and bring any officer found to have acted criminally, illegally and or in an unprofessional manner to justice.

While we empathise with the aged woman and wish her a smooth recuperation, we totally reject the unjustifiable actions taken against those who from all indications are innocent of the crime. The police cannot use the court as a shield to cover their wrongful actions in this case. The police should not be seen to be using oppressive and illegal means to fight crime.

Injury to one, is injury to all.

Thank you.

Inibehe Effiong, Esq.

Convener, Coalition of Human Rights Defenders (COHRD).

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Murder She Wrote: Fraternity Of Blood And Sorority Of Death By Ade Ilemobade

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.” ? Sun Tzu, The Art of War

I am not a Military strategist neither am I in the Nigerian Army intelligence gathering unit. However, the quote above says a lot about the bellicose situation in the Niger Delta and the agressive posturing of the Niger Delta Avengers resulting in the bombing of various Oil and Gas infrastructures with daily reference to the American doomsday prediction of the break up of Nigeria… I wonder whether they are motivated by such prediction and supported clandenstinely or is this just a criminal ragtag militancy spur by the material, financial accumulation that such activity can generate or as some people say marginalization is at the core of this latest agitation.

Niger Delta Avengers has declared war on Nigeria in collaboration with IPOB posited on marginalization arguments wrapped up in braggadociousness they are talking like Methuselah an all knowing wise oracle given divination to Omo Adari Hurun. I have the impression that they think or feel that they are the only one in Nigeria marginalised.

Let us be clear about the fact that every ethnic group in Nigeria has alleged marginalization in the annals of our development. Please, do not get me wrong I am not denying injustice as per Niger Delta but to declare war on Nigeria is a matter beyond who knows what the streets are vomiting. Pardon me for my language.

“If your enemy is secure at all points, be prepared for him. If he is in superior strength, evade him. If your opponent is temperamental, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant. If he is taking his ease, give him no rest. If his forces are united, separate them. If sovereign and subject are in accord, put division between them. Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected .” ? Sun Tzu, The Art of War

This is the strategy I hope the Nigerian Army may adopt to annihilate this cancerous growth in our polity.

@DELEMOMODU WHO IS MISLEADING PRESIDENT BUHARI?

As a reader, I notice political views regardless of whether or not the book is fiction. What annoys me is when said views do nothing to advance the narrative.- Jen Lancaster

Honourable Dele Momodu, I enjoyed your succinctly written piece but I often wonder who these people are who were misleading President Buhari.

Note: You often write about people misleading or given the President wrong or bad advices, that to me is the height of arrogance and self aggradisement because such statements from you give the impression that the admonitions given in your write-ups are better than those faceless individuals you often address as given the President misleading advices. Please take into consideration that you have your on views, perspectives and perceptions  and so do other Nigerians. You do not have all the facts on a given issue or multifaceted problems affecting Nigeria therefore to use the word misleading is to claim that your worldview is ”leading” panacea.

”I’ve been on several television and radio interviews in the past one week and the commonest question is on the performance of our President”. @DELEMOMODU

This is ridiculous. Is there any administration since the creation of our geopolitical entity Nigeria that does not have issues of performance, perception and critical question being asked? It is a common phenomenon and denominator in the psychological modulation and critical mindset of Nigerians, we critique our government daily without any sound premises on which to rest our claims because we often times refuse to ask or answer fundamental questions of ontology as it affect our behaviour/us as citizens. It takes two to tango.

In my own opinion the statement/quote above from @DELEMOMODU is a red herring and of no quantum significance since every administration in Nigeria historiographically speaking always has perception problem that in most cases have nothing to do with its intrinsic nature or performance rather what we have in respect of perceptions on the side of the citizenry versus government are attitudinal, social and functional distrust phenomena based on history of neglect by previous administrations. It is an ingrained psychological mindset.

”It’s actually pretty complex, because there’s two levels of reality in the narrative. One is what really took place, and the other is Spider’s poisoned version of what took place”.- Gabriel Byrne

You are entitled to your honest views @DELEMOMODU but there are no absolute truth within the purview of opinions because they are always an individualistic narratives. WHO IS MISLEADING PRESIDENT BUHARI?

OTUNBA ADE ILEMOBADE is a philosopher

Twitter: @pearl2prince

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How To Get Away With Murder By Nana Aisha Salaudeen

Nigeria has an illegitimate culture of dispensing ‘justice’ on ‘blundering’ individuals – jungle/mob justice. 

There are no people as united as a mob. The mob does not know religion or economics or ethnicity. They are not concerned with law and order and they certainly care not about the innocence of their victims. They only know one thing; murder – and of course, how to get away with it.

So, be it the Aluu 4 lynching that happened in Rivers state where four young men were brutally murdered and their bodies paraded for the community to see because someone accused them of stealing laptops/mobile phones or the Mob in Kano state that callously tortured and killed a woman outside her market stall because she told them not to perform ablution in front of her store or even the young man who was tortured and eventually slaughtered by his fellow compatriots in Ondo state because he was perceived to be gay – the mob is the same. They come together for a common goal, do what needs to be cold-heartedly done, disperse and go about their daily lives.

When someone is suspected of a crime, the mob abruptly becomes the judge and executioner, many times to shattering effect. They chant together, they plunder together and they destroy together. Part of the reason jungle justice is underreported and overlooked in Nigeria is that it has somehow been able to merge itself into the widespread plot of being one of the ways ‘fairness’ is dispersed. It also shows the complete lack of trust in Nigeria’s justice system especially by the common man. Largely, the mob shows a feature of people who have long been deprived of justice and fairness; it depicts the culpability of our legal system. Whether we choose to see it as a deliberate distraction from our leaders or indifference, it has managed to breed distrust among the citizens, because justice is being denied.

If there was certainty that the man that stole or exterminated would be accurately disciplined according to the law irrespective of how opulent or influential he is, who he works for or who he knows high up, then the scheme of Jungle justice may not have been birthed. It is not exceptional to hear stories of hoodlums, rapists and murderers who have been set free because of the skills they adjudicate to dubious legislators and/or influential business men. Many circumstances additionally circle around allowing offenders to go free because they belong to a certain religious faction or ethnicity. Subsequently, stories like this lead Nigerians to feeling sensitive or unsafe and choose to take laws into their own hands. Perhaps, if we had an operational and steadfast criminal justice system, sanity would be the order of the day – and of course valuable lives and properties would not be lost.

The legal system cannot take on the fight against jungle justice alone because countless people self-determining of the construct contribute to the insanity. This is possibly the most appalling and disturbing part of the act, that many people are really amused or entertained by it. It is why we have people around such scenes shooting videos, taking pictures and chanting praises for the mob. If we can have people around, shattering in glee as their fellow human is being dehumanized then why won’t we have people on the scene that would fervently refuse the act and even call for order? In many instances, the Nigerian police and security forces that should be maintaining law and order and of course avert the mortality of guiltless civilians support the barbaric act, either inactively or vigorously. Some actively spearhead the lunacy, while others passively stand by and do nothing.

The increasing rate of Mob Justice in Nigeria further buttresses how callous, primitive and hypocritical many of us essentially are, as most of the time this form of ‘justice’ is meted out to minor thieves and low-slung offenders. Let’s for a second assume mob justice is the way forward, what about the corrupt politicians, government leaders and business men who have hauled away half the affluence of the motherland for their own self-centered – private use? Why is it that they do not get this brand of ‘justice’? The answer is obvious; the mob is only a missile that bullies the powerless desperate common man who has reached his breaking point.

Has murdering and/or repugnantly slaying a human being and getting away with it reduced the level of criminality in the nation? It has not and it probably never will. Matter of fact, it only breaches human rights and diminishes an individual’s self-worth to nothing.

Jungle justice is no justice.

~

The author is an economist & accountant with a passion for journalism and writing. She is an advocate of good governance, gender equity and youth inclusion in politics and has written for various media, including: Thisday, Ynaija, The sun and others.

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Daylight Murder at Kano Market By Olusegun Adeniyi

Until last Thursday afternoon, Mrs Bridget Abahime, an indigene of Orodo town, Mbaitoli LGA in Imo State was selling plastic materials at the popular Kofar Wambai market in Kano. An altercation with a neighbor with whom she reportedly had some disagreement led to the 74-year old woman being accused of speaking blasphemy. The mob moved in to complete the rest of the tragic story and today, Mrs Abahime is no more.

President Muhammadu Buhari, Governor Umar Ganduje of Kano and other critical stakeholders have all condemned the gruesome murder with the usual promise by the Police that the main suspects, who have already been apprehended, will be brought to justice. I am sorry to say, I have no faith in that pledge. While the authorities may express indignation over this specific murder, perhaps because of its wider implications, given our delicate fault-lines, it is important for us to also note that it is a familiar crime that will happen again.

The Kano tragedy particularly rankles because, as the 17th century French mathematician, Blaise Pascal, pointed out, “men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from a religious conviction.” But before we address the issue of “blasphemy”, we must first deal with the impulse that drives Nigerians to take the life of fellow citizens, most often without any rational justification.

In 2008, a commercial motorcycle (Okada) rider hit a woman on Aba/Port Harcourt Expressway in the Rivers State capital, claiming that he saw three cats crossing the road and that it was after hitting one of them that it turned to the woman. The poor victim of a careless ‘okada’ rider was immediately pounced upon and clubbed to death. The reporter who filed the story for a national newspaper obviously believed the cat-to-woman story too, so he gave no sympathy to the hapless woman who was brutally murdered–after all, she was a cat! You will find the story online.

There is also a video of an eleven year old boy named Samuel who was lynched because, according to the mob, he was TRYING to kidnap a school child like himself with N50. The image was shown on a private television station in Lagos. It didn’t matter to his accusers who were dragging him along concrete road that the boy was vehemently protesting his innocence as they hit him with dangerous objects before eventually setting him ablaze. That particular incident sparked an online campaign called “Don’t Walk Away”.

However, if that campaign meant anything, it made no impact on 21 July, 2013, when a 25-year-old undergraduate of Delta State University, Ifechukwude Nwainokpor, and his friend (identified simply as Kazeem) were attacked and beaten to death by a mob at the Ajara area of Badagry because “their faces looked strange in the neighborhood”. According to Mr. Samuel Nwainokpor, his son, Ifechukwude and his friend, Kazeem, were just passing through a street in the area when a misunderstanding ensued between them and some hoodlums who eventually handed them over to the Vigilante. If you are interested in how the two young men were murdered, just Google and you can read and watch the eight-minute gruesome video clip on your mobile handset.

Because of the outrage that followed that particular tragedy, the then spokesperson for the Lagos State Police Command, Ngozi Braide, had this to say: “The incident is quite pathetic. Even if they were armed robbers, no one has the right to take the life of another. Why then do we have the police and the judiciary? The Nigerian police as well as the law condemn mob action and jungle justice. The commissioner of police has set up a high-powered investigation body to investigate the matter.”

Of course, we are yet to know the result of that “high-powered investigation body”. What we do know is that between then and now, there have been dozens of cases of extra-judicial killings of people “convicted” of robbery by the mob and you will find many of them on Youtube. Yet, as it happened in Kano, many of those Nigerians may not have committed the offence for which they were so exterminated by the mob. At least, that was the case with the ‘Aluu Four’, which is documented in Wikipedia as “necklace lynching”.

For those who may have forgotten, the ‘Aluu Four’ refers to the four undergraduates at the University of Port Harcourt–Chiadika Lordson; Ugonna Kelechi Obuzor, Mike Lloyd Toku and Tekena Elkana–who were roasted alive by a mob on 5th October, 2012 on the allegation that they were thieves. As it was later to be revealed, the students were actually attempting to collect a debt from a man who instigated the mob against them by alleging that the students were trying to steal laptops and mobile phones. The tragedy was captured live as those four promising undergraduates were brutalized, stripped naked and burnt. According to Wikipedia, “the crime further exposed the ‘jungle justice’ or ‘mob justice’ which was still prevalent in many of Nigeria’s poorer, more isolated communities, as well as exposed some loopholes in Nigeria’s law enforcement system.”

The manner in which it is so easy for just anybody to brand the other and secure immediate “conviction and punishment” in our country is so worrying. And if you want to be sure whether our country is better than a jungle, just do a simple online search on “Ejigbo pepper sellers” and see how a woman and her step-daughter were publicly violated in a most bestial manner before being tortured to death on grounds of an unproven allegation that they stole pepper at a market in Ejigbo, Lagos.

She is a witch. He is gay. They are thieves. And now, she has committed blasphemy! The moment somebody levels that sort of accusation against you in our country today, you will be lucky to survive the brutalities that will follow. And talking about gay, on 16th February this year, a father of three and personal assistant to a politician was beaten to death in Ondo State after being caught “assisting” his boss in the bedroom. If you are the type that grew up watching “Drakula” and looking at gory pictures, just go online and conduct a search on “gay man killed in Ondo” and you will have murder at its most bestial served you in full course.

There are just too many “Judges” in our society and they will “convict” and pass judgement on any “crime”. In September 2013, a man and woman were stripped and paraded naked in a village in Benue State. The woman was accused of adultery by sleeping with the man (with whom she was being molested) after the death of her husband. According to the mob, this was an offence against an oracle called ‘Alekwu’ in the town which punishes married women who “cheat” on their husbands, despite the fact that, in this particular instance, the man was already dead!

I can go and on because the list of extra-judicial killings in Nigeria is as long as that of the “offences” for which they are committed. In most instances, it takes the chant of one crazy fellow for these bloodthirsty hounds to appear from nowhere. And they are ever ready to kill just about anybody, perhaps because they always get away with it.

Following the daylight murder in July 2012 in Ekiti State of a 70-year-old woman, Mrs. Rebecca Adewumi, who was tortured to death by some youths because her rival claimed to have seen her (Mrs Adewumi) in a dream tormenting her son, I did an intervention titled “Apani Ma Wagun, Olokiki Oru”. That was after reading the moving account by Mrs Grace Smith, first daughter of the deceased who said her mother’s ordeal started at the palace of the Olomuo of Omuo Ekiti, Oba Noah Omonigbehin, where she (the late Mrs Adewumi) was accused of using witchcraft power to harm her step-son, by name Ola.

“On getting to Olomuo’s palace, the family was asked to come the following day at 6a.m. and on that day, the palace was full to the brim. My mother was then asked to undress to the pants, after which a series of questions were asked. She was then given a concoction (Obo leaf) said to make witches confess and die. My dear mother was told that she would die within seven days if she was involved in Ola’s matter. Nine days passed and nothing happened and I left for my base in Lagos. Three weeks after, on June 26, some youths in the town went to our house and brought out my mother and forced her to drink a poisonous item. They then took her outside into the rain where she was beaten and subjected to serious torture. When she was almost dying they took her back into her room and laid her on the bed. She died on June 30,” said Mrs Smith, daughter of the deceased.

Up till today, there is no indication that anybody has been brought to justice on account of that crime. But in a statement last weekend on the Kano tragedy, the Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Solomon E. Arase, who confirmed the arrest of two key suspects said he had “directed the Deputy Inspector-General of Police in-charge of the Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department (FCIID) to deploy the Homicide Section of the Department to immediately take over the investigation of the (Mrs Abahime’s murder) case and ensure a meticulous investigation and speedy prosecution of the arrested suspects”.

Although we have heard such declarations before, it is important that the culprits be brought to justice, especially against the background that five days before the Kano tragedy, one Methodus Emmanuel, a 24-year-old trader based in Padongari, Niger State was also killed by a mob over allegations of blasphemy. But it is comforting that we have political leaders who are sensitive enough to intervene on the Kano tragedy to avert a bigger problem.

It is in that context that one should commend Governors Rochas Okorocha (Imo), Nasir el-Rufai (Kaduna) and Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar (Bauchi) as well as the National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Odigie-Oyegun who on Tuesday met with the Ohaneze-Ndigbo leadership in Owerri. “We will not accept a situation where people, either Christians or Muslims, (would) hide under the umbrella of religion to commit crime. If someone had insulted God, the person should be left for God to take care of,” said el-Rufai.

That precisely is a message that needs to be preached in a society where several people are now playing God. I know many can only remember the 1995 sad case of Gideon Akaluka but in August 2008, a 50-year old Muslim man was also beaten to death in Kano for ‘blasphemy’ and just exactly one year ago, an Upper Sharia Court within the same city sentenced nine persons to death after they had nearly been killed by a mob on grounds that they committed blasphemy.
The trial in June last year was done in secret, and details of its proceedings were never made public, except for a terse statement by an official of the court by name Nasiru who confirmed that nine men had been tried under Sec­tion 110 and Section 382B of the Kano Shari’a Crimi­nal Procedure Law (2000) and “are hereby sentenced to death” for blasphemy. Even the name of the judge who conducted the trial and passed the verdict remains a mystery till today. Against the background that the State Government hailed that verdict, nobody knows what has happened to those unfortunate men who incidentally happen to be Muslims.

I am not advocating disrespect for the tenets of any religion and I have no sympathy for those who make reckless and inciting statements about the faith of another person. But since the fundamental right of every citizen to life is guaranteed by the Nigerian Constitution, it should worry the authorities that extrajudicial killings are becoming the norm in our country today. This is despite that even in cases of heinous offences which attract the death penalty, the State cannot execute anybody unless he or she has been convicted by a properly constituted court and availed the right of appeal to the highest court in the land.

That exactly was the message passed on Tuesday when the ECOWAS Court sitting in Abuja convicted the Federal Government and ordered it to pay damages of US$200,000 to each of the families of the eight men who were killed and US$150,000 to each of the 11 others that sustained injuries during a raid by soldiers on an uncompleted building in the Apo area of Abuja three years ago. Incidentally, when, following the tragedy, I wrote a column titled “SSS and the Apo Killings” for this page on 26th September 2013, it didn’t go down well with the authorities at the time.

I had written: “Even before stories began to filter within Abuja about the real identities of the victims of the Apo violence, it was obvious that the SSS statement just did not add up, especially given the patently false claim that nobody died. I watched (DSS Spokesperson, Mrs Marilyn) Ogar’s press conference and noticed how she was hesitant, tentative and edgy about the arms cache that were purportedly (her exact word) buried in the building where the gruesome execution was carried out. The fact that is coming to light, even from official quarters, is that the young men who were brutally gunned down were not Boko Haram members.”

I argued further: “if the state insists those killed were indeed Boko Haram members, it should do simple things to prove it: show us their weapons caches, provide reconnaissance tapes of the movements of the group before their execution, indicate how difficult it was to arrest them etc. But if otherwise, not only should the perpetrators of this most heinous crime be brought to book, there should be hefty compensation for the victims and their families. It cannot be the duty of the Nigerian state to mastermind the progressive erosion of the bonds of citizenship by allowing brazen deeds of madness by the very agencies set up to protect the people.”

In the judgement delivered on Tuesday, the sub-regional court held that the arguments and defence put up by the Federal Government were not supported by evidence and accordingly, found it liable for the extra-judicial killings of those men. The import of that judgement is that eight innocent Nigerian lives were wasted in a most cavalier manner. The lesson: If we are to develop as a nation, we must begin to put premium on human lives.

Unfortunately, while jungle justice for all manner of offences, and even for no offences at all, has been with us for a long time, the variant being prescribed in Kano by those who have made themselves the “Avengers of God” is the most dangerous in a politically charged environment like ours. Because it is one that can easily evoke passion and provoke ethno-religious uprising as well as reprisal killings that could snowball out of control. That is why it is important for the Police to ensure there is justice for the family of the late Mrs. Abahime so as to serve as a lesson to others with similar mindset that there are consequences for such heinous criminality in Nigeria.

For Keshi and Enejere
There is no way anybody can write the history of modern Nigerian football without taking into account the significant contributions of Mr. Stephen Okechukwu Keshi who died yesterday morning at age 54. A former skipper of the Super Eagles, the national team that he also managed at two different epochs, it was the “Big Boss”, as he was fondly called who led the way for Nigerian footballers who are today plying their trade abroad. And there can be no better tribute to him than the one paid yesterday by Simon Kolawole,http://www.thisdaylive.com/index.php/2016/06/08/tribute-stephen-keshi-the-man-who-changed-nigerian-football-forever/. May God grant the children he left behind the fortitude to bear the loss.

Although I knew the late Dr. Emeka Enejere from distance as a reporter in the early nineties when he was a national officer with the National Republican Convention (NRC) in the aborted Third Republic, I wasn’t close to him until about nine years ago when a mutual friend brought us together to work in a group. And I immediately took to him. A man of strong convictions who was never swayed by the crowd but rather by whatever he believed to be the right things to do, Dr Enajere would not edit his views to suit the occasion. He could smile and laugh to deaden the impact of his words but he was ever forthright. May God comfort his wife and the children he left behind.

Jonathan Speaks…
On Monday in the United Kingdom, former President Goodluck Jonathan delivered a very powerful speech titled ‘I am a Citizen of Nigeria’ at the Bloomberg Studio in London. Interested readers can access it on olusegunadeniyi.com. Meanwhile, I have also decided to open the web portal to publishing speeches/lectures as well as workshop/seminar papers that advance the cause of democracy and deepen the frontiers of knowledge about important issues in our country. Persons with such relevant (current and topical) materials can forward them to me for assessment and possible publication once I conclude they would be of interest to my readers. Such materials can be sent to olusegun.adeniyi@thisdaylive.com or/and info@olusegunadeniyi.com.

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Murder Of Market Woman: Three Suspects Now In Custody – Police

The police in Kano has arrested 3 persons in connection with the alleged murder of 74 years woman, Madam Bridget Agbahime by mob at Kofar Wambai market last Thursday.

Madam Bridget Agbahime, 74 was lynched Thursday at Kano market by mob in presence of her husband over alleged blasphemy.

The police public Relations Officer in Kano, DSP Magaji Musa Majia said that “we have three suspects in our custody in connection with the incident, and thy were been quizzed over their role in the killing of 74 years woman”.

DSP Majia said “we are working tirelessly to get to the root of this matter, and we are equally not leaving any stone unturned in the course of our investigation”.

The police action followed condemnation of the act by Kano state Governor, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, prominent community and religious leaders.

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Zakzaky: Renewed Call For Sack Of Buratai For Assassination Attempt And Murder, By Peregrino Brimah

This is a second call for the immediate sack of Chief of Army staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Yusuf Buratai for the atrocities and grave crimes against humanity committed by the army under his direct command in the days of December 12th to the 14th of 2015.

The description of the demonic acts perpetrated by the army as laid down by attorney for the family, respected “change” senior advocate Femi Falana are chilling, disturbing and sickening.

According to the narration of events by surviving daughter Suhaila and attorney Falana, General Buratai sent his men to the home of Zakzaky without a court order for Zakzaky’s arrest and out of the jurisdiction of the military.

Buratai’s “illiterate” armed hooligans in uniform burned down Zakzaky’s home in attempt to murder Zakzaky, his wife, children, relatives, friends and everyone else in and around the building. We have viewed videos of the aftermath.

Zakzaky’s elder sister was killed in the above process. Sheikh Zakzaky, his wife Zeenat and their sons and Suhaila survived the burning down of their home, hidden in the “basement.”

The soldiers then went there the next day to check and confirm that they had succeeded in murdering Zakzaky and his entire family. It was then that they found the family survived. The soldiers then murdered three of Zakzaky’s sons in cold blood in the view of Sheikh Zakzaky, Suhaila and Zeenat. The soldiers rained bullets on everyone in there hitting Zakzaky six times. His eyes were struck. Zeenat was also shot at least two times with shots to her abdomen and leg. Both were beaten, and further maltreated.

Near death and blinded Zakzaky was dragged on his behind and loaded in a wheelbarrow in typical Daesh style. They were all taken to secret detention and left to suffer and die and treated as the army so desired, denied their constitutional rights and access to their attorney’s, a judge and their medical specialists.

The bodies of the murdered sons, sister and other family members along with hundreds of other victims were carried away like animal carcasses and mass buried.

Zakzaky and wife Zeenat have since been detained extrajudicially and held incommunicado, denied access and information and prevented from seeking justice.

In additional shows of power drunken lunacy and radical fanaticism, Buratai’s possessed men under his and the orders of the administrator of Kaduna, demolished all other properties of the Zakzaky and went further to even exhume graves on his sons killed a year earlier, reportedly by Captain S.O Oku under Jonathan’s command and discarded these bodies in unknown mass graves. Some were burned.

This being the same Buratai that is unwilling and unable to accost a single of openly marauding armed Fulani herders who are brazenly above-the-law, terrorizing and killing innocent people in hundreds, burning down entire communities and even firing shots at serving Senators.

While General Buratai’s observing his paid duty to defeat ragtag, jungle hiding, heroin addicted Boko Haram terrorists is appreciated. It must be recognized that just the way we do our jobs, so also did Buratai do his. Any military leader is expected to be able to defeat terrorists, unless he is corrupt and compromised as were the past generals who were being paid by the survival of Boko Haram. Even the Civilian JTF used to roundly defeat Boko Haram terrorists when unhindered by Shettima and Jonathan.

We do recall that when Azubuike Ihejirika decided to crush Boko Haram in 2013, he did so easily, killing Shekau I and freeing all local governments under them, before he was ordered to stop and allow them recover their losses. To this effect, we believe Buratai’s salary is all he deserves for performing his duty to command the army to do their bidding against the terrorists and finish up the job Jonathan had done in his last months pre-election; and it is time he hands over that duty to other well qualified officers and is retired to face his charges for this act of unsurpassed bloody barbarism.

Nigeria’s north has suffered enough of God’s Wrath. We are tired of God punishing us with Boko Haram and making us the most disgraced land on earth. We are tired of the extreme poverty, shops burning, kidnapping, cattle rustling, kidnapping, desert encroachment and all other afflictions that God uses to punish us when we exhibit and allow and support this wickedness and oppression of the highest degrees against minorities in the north, Igbos, Christians, Shia and whoever else.

The Prophet of Islam said: “Fear the prayer of the oppressed, even if he is a disbeliever, for there is no barrier (between it and Allah [the God]).” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Please fire Buratai now and let him face his charges and free blinded Zakzaky and his beautiful wife who has lost six of her seven sons to Buhari and Jonathan and is not even able to bury them. This is not the “change” we fought and voted for.

Dr. Peregrino Brimah; @EveryNigerian

 

Editor: Opinion expressed on this page are strictly those of the author and does not necessarily reflect the views of abusidiqu.com and its associates

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South African Court Finds Oscar Pistorius Guilty Of murder

Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius has been found guilty of murder after a South African appeals court overturned an earlier manslaughter verdict.

He killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in February 2013 after shooting her four times through a locked toilet door.

He is currently under house arrest after spending one year of his original five-year sentence in jail.

Pistorius will have to return to court to be re-sentenced, for murder.

South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal ruled that the lower court did not correctly apply the rule of dolus eventualis – whether Pistorius knew that a death would be a likely result of his actions.

The minimum sentence for murder is 15 years but judges can apply some discretion.

South African law does not make provision for someone to be placed under house arrest for more than five years, so Pistorius will be going back to prison, reports the BBC’s Pumza Fihlani in Johannesburg.

Leach said that having armed himself with a high-calibre weapon, Pistorius must have foreseen that whoever was behind the door might die.

Pistorius always maintained that he believed there was an intruder in the house but the judge said that the identity of the person behind the door was “irrelevant to his guilt”.

Justice Leach compared it to someone setting off a bomb in a public place not knowing who the victims might be.

He also rejected the argument that Pistorius had acted in self-defence.

The judge argued that his life was not in danger at the time of the shooting, as Pistorius did not know who was behind the door or if they posed a threat.

He added that Pistorius did “not take that most elementary precaution of firing a warning shot”.

Pistorius did not attend the hearing in Bloemfontein.

But Ms Steenkamp’s mother, June, was present and afterwards she was seen outside the court being embraced by members of the African National Congress Women’s League, who were singing songs of celebration.

The double amputee was released from prison on 19 October. Under South African law, he was eligible for release under “correctional supervision”, having served a sixth of his sentence.

Pistorius can challenge the ruling in the constitutional court but only if his lawyers can argue that his constitutional rights have been violated.

Legal expert Mannie Witz told the BBC that there do not appear to be any grounds for such an appeal.

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VIDEO: Gov. Fayose’s Aide Manipulated Me To Implicate Innocent People In The Murder Of My Boss

Gbolahan Owoeye is the personal assistant to Omolade Aderiye, the Ekiti state Chairman of the National Union Of Road Transport Workers who was murdered last year.

In this interview with SR sheds light on the circumstances surrounding the death of the late Aderiye and how he was manipulated by the Attorney General of Ekiti State Owoseni Ajayi to implicate some innocent persons now standing trial for murder.

Watch the video below:

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Rivers APC Calls For Trial Of Wike, Others For Murder …Congratulates Peterside On Election Tribunal Victory

The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State has made a passionate appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari to hasten to fulfil his pledge that those who perpetrated various acts of violence during the last general elections would be duly punished so as to serve as a deterrent to others who may be contemplating such acts in the future.

“We appeal to our Dear President to quickly look at the issue of Rivers State, where Chief Nyesom Wike and other Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) henchmen planned and executed a mind-boggling campaign of violence that claimed over a hundred APC members and supporters in their desperate bid to capture power. Wike and his people should be prosecuted for murder without delay to restore hope to the families whose breadwinners were slain during the elections. Wike and his evil collaborators should be brought to justice, as this is the only way the souls of our people killed because of these elections can rest in peace,” Rivers APC said in a statement on Thursday in Port Harcourt and signed by the Chairman, Dr. Davies Ibiamu Ikanya.

The party told Chief Wike to correctly read the handwriting on the wall and start packing his bags in readiness to leave the Rivers State Government House which he has been occupying since May 29 due to the wrong verdict of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) announcing him as winner of the April 11 governorship poll in the State. “We happily welcome the striking out, yesterday by the Rivers Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja, of the eligibility suit filed against the APC gubernatorial candidate, Dr. Dakuku Adol Peterside, by Chief Wike. With this, the stage is set for the unraveling of the big scam that saw Chief Wike illegally occupying the Rivers Government House. For Wike, there is no more hiding place. He should start packing his bags as his ouster is imminent,” Rivers APC said.

The party congratulated Dr. Dakuku Peterside for all the successes he has so far recorded at the Tribunal and urged him not to relent until the infamous victory of Wike against the wishes of Rivers State and her people is completely upturned. “We remain fully convinced that Dr. Peterside is the popular choice of Rivers people and that he will retrieve his stolen mandate sooner than later,” Rivers APC said.

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TB Joshua and the witchcraft Murder of 85 South Africans Pilgrims By Obinna Akukwe

TB Joshua, a popular prophet in Nigeria, has indirectly murdered eighty five citizens of South Africa who came to Nigeria looking for God and solutions to their problems through acts not far from witchcraft. These eighty five South Africans are among the over one hundred and sixteen persons who perished when his guest house collapsed in September 2014.

TB Joshua is a man whom the mainstream Pentecostal body in Nigeria has declared a false prophet. I was in Sokoto many years preparing for a foreign mission ago when signals came that this man was among those blacklisted by Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN). Another person also blacklisted was Prophet Samson Ayorinde. Their blacklisting was based on the fact that those who have spiritually discerning powers have noted that they use strange powers in their operations, and those who fled from their fold, including ex-pastors claimed that the man disappears into the waters beside the church from time to time, among many other allegations.  Weeks later I also attended a PFN briefing in Sokoto while preparing for Bishop Wale Oke’s Prayer Crusade which held at Trade Fair Complex and the National Vice President of PFN, North West  also briefed gospel ministers on this TB Joshua issue.

The General Overseer of The Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor Enoch Adeboye has also said that he will not preach in TB Joshua’s Church. When asked whether he could worship in Joshua’s church, Adeboye retorted, “No! Definitely not! If he wants me to come and minister in his church, we will sit down; we will discuss the issue of salvation the way I understand it, according to the scriptures. If we agree on that and he now wants me to come and preach the same message of salvation in his church, then I will go.”

The then President of Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, and current leader of Nigeria’s Christian Community ,echoing the mind of PFN members said that before Joshua could even qualify to be a PFN member, he should show who tutored him as a pastor in the first place.. According to Oritsejafor  “If T.B. Joshua can show me his pastor who pastored him before he said he was called into the ministry; if T.B. Joshua can tell me when he got converted and how he got converted, then we would consider him” He added that “ Anybody who is a Christian is a Christian because he received Jesus Christ at a point. . I gather he said he was converted in his mother’s womb”

Despite the fact that mainstream Pentecostals have distanced themselves from this man, foreigners have continued to troop to his Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN)  drinking miracle water and doing all manners of things in search of solution to problems. Whatever TB Joshua and his followers do in that their Synagogue is entirely their business, but charming and hoodwinking the entire Christendom to the heinous murdering foreigners and Nigerians in his church, bringing international embarrassment to Nigeria, is not applicable to me. A lady who was rescued from the rubbles is now paralyzed and on wheel chair from the incidence and the God of TB Joshua and SCOAN have abandoned the lady to her fate.

Among these 115 persons are 85 South Africans who came to see the God of TB Joshua and them all ended up in the graveyard of TB Joshua. Yes the graveyard of TB Joshua swallowed some persons, and initially I thought that this prophet will respect himself after the incidence, and allow rescue workers to come to salvage as many people as possible. Rather, while his congregants were busy crying from within the rubbles, his bouncers and thugs, who have already intimidated the residents of Ikotun area of Lagos to submission, were busy harassing and beating up rescue workers, while another group were spraying miracle water. Is the harassment of rescue workers, including those from NEMA a script to ensure that more persons die and the number of blood needed obtained before help can be sent to the victims? Had TB Joshua allowed a quicker response to the tragedy, probably the death toll would have been less than twenty.

This man, not done with delayed rescue of trapped victims, made an unfortunate statement alluding that terrorist sabotage was responsible for the collapse of his church. Some of us know that Boko Haram has not yet reached the sophistry of using an aircraft to create a demolition of a church in far away Lagos. What TB Joshua said was a white lie and liars are liable to hell fire.

A video of a hovering aircraft has been shown as evidence that Boko Haram or any form of terrorist group deliberately flew over his building. I wonder why Boko Haram will leave Canaan Land, Ota where Bishop Oyedepo led a straight six week long prayer against the insurgents between May and July of 2014, replicated in all their Churches and go after TB Joshua. How can Boko Haram leave Pastor Adeboye at The Redemption Camp, Shagamu Express, near Lagos  where their Convention of August 2014 devoted more time to pray against the insurgents, and before then , their Thursday prayers devoted time to pray against the terrorists , and be looking for TB Joshua.  How can Boko Haram leave Pastor Paul Enenche, Dunamis Gospel Centre, Abuja, which embarked on a six week of anointing to terminate terrorism, between May and June and then proceed to fly over Synagogue in far away Lagos.  What has Synagogue done specifically against Boko Haram to warrant attacks on him.

In order for this white lie to fly, journalists were assembled and bribed with sum of N50, 000 naira each. A journalist friend of mine told me that he collected ‘anointed money’ from TB Joshua and all my efforts to convince him that that money is not anointed money, rather it is ‘anointed bribe’ fell on deaf ears. The purpose of the bribe is to give soft landing to the murder of innocent people. However, God used a Premium Times reporter by name Nicholas Ibekwe , to expose the corruption and the rest is history.

The Lagos State Government has instituted a coroner’s inquest as is the practice in developed countries, to discover why such an incidence took place in Nigeria. To the best of my knowledge, this inquest is not targeted at TB Joshua as a person. It is probably to prevent future reoccurrence yet this prophet has been fighting the proceedings at the court. The situation became so shameful that the Lagos State High Court fined TB Joshua and his Synagogue the sum of N25, 000 naira for delaying proper investigations. Justice Lateefa Okunnu, while awarding the cost, berated the prophet for “wasting the time of the court and tax payers’ money.” Joshua had earlier filed a case to stop the proceeding at the Federal High Court and it was dismissed. Why is TB Joshua afraid of coroner’s inquest into circumstances surrounding the death of 115 persons? These dead people are not 115 donkeys.

I have asked various structural engineers both in Nigeria and the US and they have told me that the type of collapse of that building is not possible without placing all the materials used for the controlled demolition around the vicinity. There is no Thermite Shape Charges on the site and other controlled demolition aids. Their conclusion is that a structural defect might have occurred.

The South West Coordinator of National Emergency Management Agency(NEMA) Ibrahim Farinloye, while debunking the terrorist suggestion told AFP that “If it were an act of terrorism or sabotage, it would have gone into rubble,” He went further to say that” “For the first three days of the incident, the church people were very hostile and prevented rescue officials’ access to the site,” Three days that would have been used to save lives was use to obstruct rescue workers and sprinkle miracle water amidst shouts of praise to God of TB Joshua , and the trapped victims were witchcrafted unto slow premature death.

The Lagos state building control agency also complained that its officials were obstructed from moving to the sites and believed that this led to loss of more lives. The State Government had explained that the uncompleted building, which was originally two floors, was increased to six without approval.

Rafiq Arogunjo, of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), again dismissed a theory advanced by Joshua and his supporters about aerial sabotage. According to Arogunjo, “The aircraft was no longer in flight when the building collapsed. I don’t see any nexus between the aircraft and the collapse. I think the investigators should look into the structural integrity of the building.” The church is alluding that it was the Nigerian Airforce C-130 aircraft, which flew past the building, caused the collapse.

Bisi Adedire, the building consultant over the collapsed building has admitted before the Coroner that the building contravened the law. He said that lack of approval did not mean the building was unsound but told the coroner that he warned church officials they were ignoring regulations “I told the church they have contravened the law in a way by building without approval but they said they could regularize it,”

This prophet is unknowingly fighting what could have helped him escape the blame of Nigerians. TB Joshua is not the only person whose building has collapsed in Nigeria. Few years back, in Jabi District of Abuja, a shopping complex under construction collapsed, killing about thirty persons and one of the engineers at the site told me that the supervising engineer and the owner never adhered to specifications he gave as advice. . Therefore, TB Joshua is not the first to cut corners in Nigeria. He should admit his mistakes and ask for our forgiveness.

However, this Prophet bent on self destruct, is proving that it was a terrorist attack that brought down his church. Who then are the terrorists? Many year ago, I did a deliverance on a particular man who claimed that he was among some occult group contracted to collapse a building at the Chime , New Haven are of Enugu. The building under construction killed nothing less than twenty persons. It was alleged that the building was owned by a big man who later became a chieftain of the ruling party in Nigeria by name Chris Uba. This Uba of a person is a member of BoT of the ruling PDP in Nigeria. This man narrated how they spiritually pulled down the building and siphoned blood through spirit realms. However, he did not say that it was the PDP chieftain that contracted him.

From TB Joshua’s treatise, I can conclude that it is either he corruptly erected a poor quality building, leading to the death of foreigners, or he made alliance with some witches to plan the collapse of this building for spiritual empowerment purposes. Since this building collapsed TB Joshua’s God had not named the very enemy that pulled down the building. He is probably hiding the witches that helped pull down the building. Why must he hide the spirits, are they working for him. Why did TB Joshua refuse emergency assistance to the victims when the collapse was very fresh? Why did he claim it was terrorist attacks? Why did he bribe journalists? Why is he fighting coroners inquest meant to probably help forestall future occurrence.

It is unfortunate that South Africa lost such precious souls who came to our shores for spiritual succor. The Bible said that we should take care of strangers, therefore, any stranger in your midst, you have extra duty to ensure their safety and that is why I am concerned about the loss of lives of strangers. Exodus 22vs 21 says “Do not mistreat or oppress a foreigner, for you were foreigners in Egypt.

TB Joshua should come clean on the witchcraft murder of visiting South Africans. It is either his alliance with witches caused the attacks or his unethical behaviors-let him apologize for that witchcraft murder and save Nigeria further embarrassment.

Obinna Akukwe wrote through

www.facebook.com/pages/obinna-akukwe…@ObinnaAkukwe…. prophetobinna2@yahoo.com

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