On the Continued Illegal Detention of Citizen Gabriel Emperor Ogbonna.
The New Abia Vision, a sociopolitical association of Abians and all lovers of good governance, equity and fairness, wishes to condemn the continued illegal detention of Barr. Gabriel Emperor Ogbonna, an Aba based lawyer, by the Department of State Servuce in collusion with the Abia State government.
We are shocked and appalled that in this age and time and under a democratic dispensation, that such crude resort to absolutism and tyranny can be perpetrated by an elected government.
The fact of the matter as available to us are;
That Mr Emperor Ogbonna, a Legal Practitioner in Aba, Abia State, was arrested sometime in March on the alleged orders of Chief Agbazuare, Chief of Staff to the Abia State governor and arraigned before Magistrate Court 7, Umuahia on March 24, 2020.
He was charged with an allegation of cyber-crime and terrorism in Charge No. U/144C/2020. He was said to have been remanded in custody by the Magistrate Court until he was brought before the Federal High Court, Umuahia exactly a month later on April 24, 2020.
The Federal High Court, Umuahia granted him bail on Tuesday, April 28, 2020 and according to the leaders of the Bar in Aba, the bail was subsequently perfected. Notwithstanding, the men of D.S.S. Abia State were said to have re-arrested him and put him in detention.
The travails of citizen Gabriel Emperor Ogbonna mirrors the harrowing collective experience of Abians who have been victims of political brigandage, impunity and gross abuse of human rights, degrading and inhuman treatment.
The New Abia Vision calls on the men of the DSS in Abia State to speedily release Mr Gabriel Emperor Ogbonna without any further delay in obedience to the Federal High Court Order granting him bail. Under the law and the Constitution of this country, bail is a constitutional right. And in the strong words of the same Constitution, Mr Gabriel Emperor Ogbonna is innocent of the offences charged until his guilt has been established before a competent Court of Law. Furthermore, let it be stated that the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, as amended does not leave anybody in doubt as to the position of the rights of Nigerian citizens.
In a Constitutional Democracy such as ours, the law is no respecter of persons and Orders and Judgments of Courts of competent jurisdiction must be obeyed and speedily too.
The New Abia Vision calls on the Honourable Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice of Abia State, Uche Ihediwa Esq., to bring the weight of his Office to bear on this matter and ensure the immediate release of Gabriel Emperor Ogbonna as well as ensuring thst justice is dispensed to all parties concerned.
We call on all Abians and all men of goodwill to rise up and demand for the unconditional release of citizen Gabriel Emperor Ogbonna. We must rise up to recover our basic humanity. We must rise up to end impunity in Abia State.
Chief Bond Ohuche
New Abia Vision