Earlier in the day, a group of half-naked women from Sowore’s birthplace in Kiribo, Ese-Odo Local Government Area of Ondo State, had stormed the Federal High Court, Abuja, to protest the continued illegal detention of their son by the Department of State Services.
The gestures by the half-naked women gained fruition as the DSS has released rights activist and presidential candidate of the African Action Congress in the February 2019 general elections, Mr. Omoyele Sowore.
His co-detainee, Adebayo Bakare, was also freed.
They were freed hours after Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court in Abuja had given the DSS 24-hour ultimatum to release the two men.
Their lead defence counsel, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), confirmed this development to our Correspondent on Thursday.
He said they were released about 7pm on Thursday.
“They were released about 30 minutes ago. They were released to one of our lawyers,” he said.
He also told our Correspondent that the agency had paid the sum of N100,000 awarded against it by Justice Ojukwu for making the court to adjourn till Friday for frivolous reasons on Thursday.
The two men, who are now being prosecuted by the Federal Government on charges of treasonable felony, were arrested in August over their call for ‘Revolution’ protest against what they described as “bad governance.”
But DSS continued to hold them in custody despite separate court orders ordering their release.
It came to a head on Thursday when the judge, who frowned at the conduct of the DSS, issued a fresh order directing the agency to release them within 24 hours.
“Our clients have been released. They were released to a lawyer in our team,” said their lawyer, Femi Falana.
In conjunction with his release, the DSS “also paid a symbolic fine of N100,000 ($276) for failing to obey an earlier judgement,” Falana said.
In October, a high court in Abuja, the federal capital, ordered that Sowore and his co-defendant Olawale Bakare be released on conditional bail, but the authorities kept them locked up.
Sowore and Bakare were accused of “treasonable felony”, “cyberstalking” the president and money laundering, among other charges.
Sowore, who runs news website Sahara Reporters which regularly reports on official graft, had called for nationwide protests against misrule in Nigeria.
A series of street protests have been held in Abuja calling for his release.
Is Godwin Emefiele, the suspended CBN Governor, a saboteur? Emma Agu asks.
I recently expressed my concerns about the arrest and subsequent detention of Godwin Emefiele, the suspended Governor of the Central Bank. It is important to note that my views on this matter are objective and unbiased.
The Department of State Services (D.S.S) has officially charged Emefiele with various offenses, including illegal possession of firearms and ammunition, criminal breach of trust, incitement to violence, criminal misappropriation of public funds, economic sabotage, economic crimes of national security significance, and undermining security.
However, despite being granted bail by the court, there were incidents where security operatives openly fought to re-arrest him. Due to my history of speaking out against our nation’s problems for many years, I refrained from writing about it as it felt futile. Speaking out on such matters exposes one to unnecessary security risks. Nevertheless, I am compelled to share a few words due to this case’s circumstances.
During former President Buhari’s first term in office, Nnamdi Kanu was arrested and released on bail but later re-arrested in an attempt by the government at that time (which failed to present a solid case)to diminish his influence. The government failed hopelessly over and over again to prove a case against him as they held him indefinitely.
What the government does to Nnamdi Kanu differs significantly from my understanding of justice. Government security operatives are holding Nnamdi Kanu inhumanely. During my last visit to Abuja when his brother, wife, and lawyer paid me a visit, I was informed about Nnamdi Kanu’s inhumane conditions. While I may have had conflicts with Nnamdi Kanu before, the government has yet to prove its case against him; he should be released. Igboland needs peace. The man should be allowed back home unless the Federal Government is content with the prevailing security situation in Igboland.
People should not be detained indefinitely; they should only be charged when sufficient evidence exists for a successful prosecution. It is crucial to treat individuals as human beings regardless of their circumstances. This viewpoint would apply equally if anyone were detained for an extended period without any clear conclusion. The unnecessary chaos involving Nigerian security forces, the executive, and judiciary branches makes Nigeria look like a Banana Republic, and we can do better.
While I am not a lawyer and cannot provide legal analysis on this matter, considering the charges and the unfolding drama, this case presents significant challenges for the government in obtaining a guilty verdict. Additionally, one might question whether he would have been detained if there had been no difficulties for Nigerians in obtaining new Naira notes.
While many of my followers may believe he deserves punishment, I kindly ask you to view this matter objectively. Many people think Bola Tinubu wants to punish him because he was against his candidacy. We are watching closely. The charges against the man might arise from a personal vendetta, suggesting there is more to this situation than meets the eye. The available information accessible to the public is limited, and everyone must pay attention.
Emma Agu, alias AlahBama, writes from New York City.
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A corps member identified as Princess Odume, was on Monday arrested by the Akwa Ibom police command for the murder of a yet-to-be-identified man.
The young woman, who is said to be a graduate of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, was stripped naked by neighbours of the victim who caught her trying to skip the fence with a machete.
The Akwa Ibom Police Public Relations Officer, Odiko Ogbeche-Macdon confirmed the victim was the alleged murderer’s lover.
He also said, “The police are investigating. The police have her in custody, she committed the act, but as I speak, an investigation is ongoing as to how and why she did it.”
COVID-19 Claims the Life of a House on the Rock Pastor
A House On The Rock pastor, Adeyinka Akinbami(61), lost his life to COVID-19 on Friday, the 8th of January, 2021.
The Senior Pastor, of the church, Paul Adefarasin, urged Nigerians to adhere to the COVID-19 protocols.
“Yesterday (Friday), I received the rude and shocking news of someone deeply dear to me and all of the HOTR family. The passing of Pastor Yinka Akinbami has become most painful because if there truly were good men, he was certainly one. To my brother, sleep well till we meet to part no more.
“Family, kindly allow me to solicit your intercession for his dear wife of over 30 years; Pastor Tolu, his children, his children-in-law, and grandchildren. We can only at best imagine how much pain they are feeling. We share the pain of his loss but they will feel it a lot more.
“It’s important to remind the community about the deadly nature of the COVID-19 and its mutant virus strains. Please do your part by following all the recommended precautions. That way, you are able to protect yourself and others who become proximal to you. God bless and keep us all”, Adefarasin Tweeted.
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