…Demands Immediate Release of Abaribe
…Reminds that Arrest Follows the Same Pattern as Deployment of Python Dance II at Eke-Ukwu Few Days to Court Hearing
By Chibuike Nwabuko
Abuja (Sundiata Post) – Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and Counsel to Senator Enyinnaya Abaraibe, Chukwuma Chukwu-Umeh (SAN) has bemoaned the arrest and detention of the federal lawmaker, Senator Enyinnaya Abaraibe for allegedly aiding and supporting a proscribed group (IPOB) less than ninety-six hours to the hearing of his “show-cause” case in court over the disappearance of the IPOB Leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
The Senior Advocate, in a press conference on Saturday, called for the immediate release of Abaraibe, informed that nothing incriminating was found after what he described as a “dispiriting and excruciating house search” that lasted between 5.00pm and 11: 15 pm on Friday.
Chukwuma Chukwu-Umeh (SAN) while narrating that the whole arrest arrangement was on “suspicion” of aiding and supporting a proscribed IPOB, reminded that the deployment of Python Dance II whose activities led to the disappearance of Nnnamdi Kanu few days to 17th of October when he was supposed to be in court, is repeating itself in this arrest. He what were found to According to him, among the 27 items taken away by the DSS officials that raided the house included: CPU, 3 Laptops and Phones.
Among these phones he said, were phones of American citizens who happened to be there as at the time the incident was going on. “Every effort was made to explain to them that these are American citizens who just came in and not aware of anything, even the arrest, and yet those phones were ceased from them, he said.
The Senior Advocate who emphasized that the constitution provides for partisan politics decried how those whose views slant differently from the system of running government are being muzzled namely; Senator Dino Melaye, Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, Senator Shehu Sani, Senator Suswan, Senate President, Bukola Saraki and now Senatoor Enyinnaya Abaraibe.
The full address reads thus:
The constitution provides for partisan politics. Partisan politics is the only way the citizens can determine who governs them. In that wise when you talk about partisan politics, you now appreciate that the opposition are more important to the constitution than the government in power. Because from the opposition you will get to know the other side of the story and that will be counter –balancing of the views.
And may I say this, if this respect for opposition did not occur in 2015, the nation Nigeria would not have deepened her democracy whereby government in power was unseated by the new one –APC. So it is on the basis of this that I am going to let you know of these events that took place.
Yesterday in the 4.00noon, Distinguished Senator Abaraibe whom you know has made a lot of articulate contributions towards the other side of the view in our nation building process was arrested and detained.
As his council, there and then I moved to the head office of the DSS who arrested and detained him. I booked appointment to see the Director General as to know why he was arrested, unfortunately that opportunity was not granted.
I also made effort to meet with my client to see why he is being arrested, that opportunity was not also granted. Senator Abaraibe has a peculiarity, he is on a special diet because of his health and he also has a special medication-I explained all these to the men of the DSS, that there is need for them to allow his wife to bring in his diet as well as his medication.
While this was going on I was called that the men of DSS are now moving to his house for a search. I had to cut short the discussion here and rushed to the house around 5pm. The search which started from 5pm continued till around 11:30pm as the household of Senator Abaribe was subjected to a dispiriting, excruciating house search.
Everything- call it book, pot, bed, matrass, carpet, and ceiling was turned upside down. As I got to his house, I met with the head of the team and asked him for the search warrant, he gave me a copy which I took time to study, what did I find, “Search for arms and ammunition and any other incriminating document for aiding and supporting a proscribed body (IPOB)” signed by Kutigi.
So the whole arrangement was that he was arrested on suspicion of aiding and supporting a proscribed body, IPOB.
The history of IPOB am sure is at our finger tips –you are aware that the IPOB story led to the arrest of Nnamdi Kanu; and you are also aware that our constitution has made in a criminal trial, bail as a bedrock because every accused person is presumed innocent, until proven guilty by court of law, so the place of suretee in a criminal trial is very important.
Senator Abaraibe did the nation proud by agreeing to be a suretee to Nnamdi Kanu. This was done few days to 17th of October when Nnamdi Kanu was supposed to be in court, you know what the python Dance scheme did in Afo-ukwu his home town, leading to the disappearance of the accused person.
So few days to the trial of Nnamdi Kanu there was this Python Dance and you are also aware that because Nnamdi Kanu was no longer coming to court, there is this process of “show cause” issued to the suretees which Senator Enyinnaya Abaraibe was one of them. The matter is coming up on Tuesday, 26th of June 2018, which is 4 days to the matter coming up for trial, Senator Enyinnaya Abaraibe who is supposed to come to court to show cause has been arrested.
So I wish you appreciate some of these contradictions, matter coming up in court and all that. So when the search was done that ended in 11.15pm, what were found to us –nothing incriminating, all that were found were 27 items including CPU, 3 Laptops, Phones .
Among these phones were phones of American citizens who happened to be there as at the time the incident was going on. Every effort was made to explain to them that these are American citizens who just came in and not aware of anything, even the arrest and yet those phones were ceased from them.
One more thing that touches the mind is a laptop that was taken and a lot of plea was made because in this laptop was question paper that is going to be set for students on Monday.
Efforts were made so that these questions can be copied out so that will be administered and the future of our children would not be hanged, this again was not allowed.
But we are happy to inform you that during the search, no arms and ammunition was found; there was no ‘Ghana Must Go’ bags containing dollars and billions of naira with which to say sponsorship of IPOB was being done because you know sponsorship of illegal bodies is always done in raw cash. There was no single money found there, no incriminating document –nothing at all.
After the search, Abaraibe was again taken back to the DSS headquarters, efforts were made for him to be released and it fell into deaf ears. This morning I even took his personal doctor to this DSS office and explained to them that here is his doctor, and his lawyer, can we please have a chat with him and know what is going on, gain all these were turned down.
I laid a background before about the issue of opposition, you are aware that sometime in 16th of June 2017 there was this issue of Ekweremadu who was labeled corrupt, on 12 April 2018, Senator Shehu Sani was accused of aiding and abating armed robbers. When I call the names, you know the slants on the views of these persons to the government, the usefulness of these views. On 24th March 2018, Senator Dino Melaye was accused of aiding bandits you also know the stand of Dino Melaye on our system of running government.
Recently you heard that Senator Bukola Saraki was accused of building and breeding armed robbers to kill his own people. On the 27th of February, 2018 and recently the former governor of Benue State was also arrested. You also know when it comes to political view, where these people are; and then now on the 22nd of June 2018, Senator Enyinnaya Abaraibe has been arrested and now accused of aiding and supporting proscribed body.
Though, it is on record and within everybody’s knowledge that all he did was to take Nnamdi Kanu on bail and he is already instructed his council to appear in court to “show cause” why it was not his making that Nnamdi Kanu disappeared. I want to reinstate that this muzzling of opposition -it will not help this country because without opposition, without second view, no one person can build a nation, Nigeria is blessed with different cultural groups and each of these can be harmonized into building a wonderful, well organized and articulated views that can help the nation grow.
We demand that Senator Enyinnaya Abaraibe be released today so that he will continue his good works he is doing at the National Assembly.