By CYPRIAN AJAH, Enugu
MRS. Chinyere Mbah, a 72 year old mother has accused the Nigerian Police Enugu State Command of killing her 26 years old son, Chijioke Mbah, who hails from Amodu, Awkunanaw in Nkanu West Local Government Area, of Enugu State.
According to Mrs. Mbah, her son was arrested on the 3rd day of April 2016, by the Police at the Agbani Divisional Police Headquarters, Agbani, Enugu State. She stated that one Ebuka was also arrested by the Police on that fateful day for possessing a cloth with a secret cult inscription. The said Ebuka was said to have mentioned the name of Chijioke as the owner of the cloth, where upon the police went and arrested Chijioke and granted Ebuka bail after his father paid certain sum of money.
While narrating the story, Mrs. Mbah who shied uncontrollable tears said in the morning hours of 4th April 2016, the policemen from Agbani Police station came and conducted a search on her residence but find nothing incriminating. After the search, one Mr. Ifenayi Mbah an in-law to Chijioke and the wife of Chijioke went to the Police Station to give the detainee (Chijioke) food and asked what offence he had committed but they were both arrested and detained for one week despite the fact that the detainee they went to look for was transferred to the Nigeria Police Distress Call Base, Enugu that same day Ifenayi and the wife of Chijoke went to the Police station. They were later granted bail after paying various sums.
Mrs. Mbah said since the detention of Chijioke at the Distress Call Base in April she only saw her son last in mid May 2016, through the assistance of a lawyer she engaged. She said that Chijioke was brought out from the police cell with bruises all over his body and wounds on his body from nail used to perforate his body. She further informed the public that since then, she has not been allowed to see her son in custody and the lawyer handling the matter was also not willing to follow her to go to the Police station because of Police harassment and intimidation.
She said she was turned back at various times she had gone to give her son food; and none of the policemen agree to talk to her on the whereabouts or the state of health of her son. She feared that her son might have been killed extra judicially hence the refusal of the Police to allow her see Chijioke since mid May 2016,
almost two months ago proved abortive.
The Civil Rights Realization and Advancement Network (CRRAN), a Non Governmental Organization through its leader, Olu Omotayo (IVLP) has taken over the matter demanding for action of sought from a petition written to Inspector General of Police IGP. In a press statement signed and made available to journalist in Enugu Omotayo wrote “We submit that it is the right of a detainee in custody to be allowed to see his lawyer and relatives who will assist him to prepare his defence. We urge you to intervene in this matter and allow Mrs. Mbah and the relatives of the detainee to see him”
The statement further read. “We also urge that the detention of the detainee without been taken before a court of competent jurisdiction is unconstitutional and urge you to ensure that the unlawful continued detention of Chijioke Mbah comes to an end forthwith. He should be granted bail or released or alternatively if he has committed any offence whatsoever he should be charged to court forthwith” The statement added, “We had earlier written to the Commissioner of Police Enugu State vide a petition dated 22nd July 2016, but got no response.