A former Councillor in Ugwufie Ward, Ohafia local government council of Abia State, Hon Ojisi Iro Ogbaja has finally regained freedom days after being arrested by the Police, Igbere TV can authoritatively report.
Igbere TV learnt that Hon Ogbaja was on Thursday, arrested and detained by men of the Nigeria Police zone 9 headquarters, Umuahia over a petition by the Personal Assistant to the Abia State Deputy Governor, Mr David Iro.
It was gathered that Iro had petitioned the Assistant Inspector General (AIG) of Police to commence a criminal investigation and trial of Ogbaja over the validity of INEC Voter Register used in a case filed against the commission in a court.
Recall that Igbere TV on January 31, 2019 reported that the former councillor had drag the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) before a federal high court sitting in Umuahia over alleged irregularities in the commission’s Voter Register.
Ogbaja, a resident of Elu-Ugwu Nkporo community in Ohafia LGA said he had observe some irregularities in the INEC Voter Register in about 15 units of Etitama Nkporo in Ndi-Elu Ward.
He said that INEC had fraudulently made use of his picture in other peoples’ voter card, and equally raised the alarm over his inclusion as a voter in the Deputy Governor’s Etitiama Nkporo community, Ndi Elu Ward.
The former councillor, while addressing a press conference on January 27, 2019 equally claimed that INEC was collaborating with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Abia to rig the last general elections.
He accused the Deputy Governor, Ude Oko Chukwu, of being the mastermind of the whole plan, adding, “this was orchestrated by the commission (INEC) with the view of rigging and undermining the validity of the 2019 general elections.”
Hon Ogbaja, therefore, said he had approached the law court having failed to secure a reasonable explanation from INEC, adding, “despite my complaints, the commission went ahead and published the same list of registered voters during the final publication of voter register in January.”
Reacting, the Nkporo Political Stakeholders Forum said it was an affront to democracy for the PDP to have arrested the former councillor over a matter before the court.
They alleged that the move was an attempt to achieve “cheap political points”, while maintaining that the APC in Abia cannot be intimidated.
“Nkporo Political Stakeholders Forum and the APC Family in Nkporo deeply appreciate everyone who stood by us on Thursday and Friday during the arrest and detention of our ranking member Hon Iro Ojisi Sunday ( aka Abacha) by men of the Nigerian police zone 9 police headquarters Umuahia over a petition that emanated from the PA to the Deputy Governor Mr David Iro.
“We condemn in strong and unequivocal terms the descent to barbarism and witchhunt in a desperate and despicable attempt to achieve cheap political points.
“It’s procedurally an affront to constitutional democracy and rule of law to arrest Hon Abacha (from Elughu Nkporo community in Ndi Etiti Ward) over a matter he brought against INEC before a Court of Competent Jurisdiction (Federal High Court Umuahia) challenging the fraudulent use of his picture, inclusion and Registration as a Voter in the Deputy Governor’s Etitiama Nkporo community (Ndi Elu Ward) which is a clear breach of process and INEC guidelines.
“In the said suit, other irregularities like multiple registration of voters, registration of under-age, non-residents and use of still pictures/photographs of various individuals against the direct capturing of images during registration as provided by the laws were fragrantly abused by the petitioner Mr David Iroh and his cohorts.
“In a brazen attempt to sway the course of justice and rule of law, Mr David (a supposed lawyer) petitioned the AIG zone 9 for a criminal charge against Hon Iro Ojisi on the validity of the INEC Voters Register annexed to the suit pending in the federal high court Umuahia.
“One wonders what could be the Locus of David Iro for petitioning the AIG to commence a criminal investigation and Trial against Hon Ojisi on the validity of INEC Voters Register used in a case filed against INEC. Is David better placed to question and challenge the validity of INEC property attached as Evidence in a suit pending in court against INEC than INEC itself and the Court of competent jurisdiction?. The petitioner is not a Party and does not represent INEC who has already appeared in Court through their legal team to defend the commission, the matter was between INEC and Hon Ojisi and the Voters Register attached belongs to INEC as a property, it’s common sense that INEC reserves the natural right to challenge the source and validity of her voters register tendered in court. The Court also has the natural right to ascertain the validity of the voters register brought before His Lordship and should takes necessary measures to investigate the source and validity in the event that the authenticity of the document is brought to question, where does David as a lawyer come into this picture ?…this is the latest version of being a meddlesome interloper. His Lordship must hear this.
“Hon Ojisi was arrested on Thursday evening around 7pm and by Friday afternoon, arrangements had been completed and perfected to arraign him in an Umuahia Magistrate Court for a criminal offence of forgery in less than 24 hours after his arrest. Its obvious that no thorough investigation into a criminal offence of this magnitude could be achieved in less than 24 hrs. The speed and hasty conclusion preceding this arraignment was very suspicious and designed to achieve the some untoward machinations of the masterminds and sponsors of the petition against Hon Ojisi.
“It was ridiculous to find people like John Okocha (PDP Chairman Ohafia LGA) in court yesterday waiting to watch as the plot to dump Abacha in Afara prison unveiled.
“…and to their greatest chagrin, we watched them bury their ugly faces in utter shame.
“Its never a crime to belong to APC anywhere in Nigeria…this persecution and political witch hunt of APC members by PDP in Nkporo must certainly stop one day.
“We are undeterred and no amount of victimization can alter our resolve to remain in APC…its all about our #NextLevel interest in Nkporo.”