The National Chairman of the Human Rights Defenders Organization of Nigeria, Mr. Casely Omon-Irabor Esq on Saturday urged the Inspector-General of Police, IGP to institute a thorough and independent investigation into the unlawful arrest and detention of five Journalists in Warri on Tuesday, May 26.
Irabor made the call following the attempted kidnap and murder of Mr. Cletus Opukeme, a renowned Journalist by Armed men parading themselves as Policemen from the Police Headquarters IGP Monitoring Unit during a press conference at his office in Warri.
The legal practitioner noted that Mr. Cletus Opukeme had raised an alarm at his office that his life was in danger because of an investigative story he is currently covering concerning a serving Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC.
Mr. Omon-Irabor said, “Some men in Police uniform heavily armed invaded the Secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Warri Chapel and arrested a man on duty, rough handled him and took him to the Area Commander’s office of the Nigeria Police Force Warri, where he was detained.
“That when the news got to other Journalists, four of them who were readily available went to the Police to ask for the offense of their colleague but were subsequently arrested and detained.
“That the executives of the NUJ went to the Area Command and the Commissioner of Police Delta State ordered their immediate release. Then the Police denied that the arresting officers were never genuine Policemen.
“The Complainant is still under serious threat from Chief Security Officer (CSO) and the Chief Press Secretary (CPS) of the Minister and it may interest you to know that as at now, two(2) people are already dead in mysterious circumstances who are part of the subject of the monumental fraud allegedly committed in NDDC.
” Please, we urge you to swing into action and stop the killings and institute a thorough and independent investigation into this matter.”