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Uzodinma Speaks Like A Governor Without Mandate Of The People —HURIWA

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The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has criticised the decision of the Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma to arrest over 400 persons in relation to a spate of attacks in the state by unknown gunmen.

According to HURIWA, the detained youths — of Igbo heritage — were arrested off the streets and arbitrarily detained for many weeks without trial.

However, the group implored the governor to provide access to human rights groups and lawyers to ascertain the veracity of the claim.

This was contained in a statement issued on Monday in Abuja by the National Coordinator of HURIWA, Emmanuel Onwubiko.

Onwubiko alleged that the Imo State governor spoke like a governor without a mandate of the people.

If he has the mandate of the people, he should know that a government could not continue to keep citizens in detention ad infinitum and beyond constitutional limits, the group noted.

HURIWA said: “We ask the Imo State governor to publish the names of the 400 detainees and inform Nigerians of the status of their prosecution because of the groundswell of allegations of human rights violations perpetrated by soldiers and police in the guise of clamping down on the so-called unknown gunmen on the orders of President Muhammadu Buhari with active connivance with Governor Hope Uzodimma.

“In reference to the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in Section 35 (1), every person shall be entitled to his personal liberty and no person shall be deprived of such liberty.

“Any person who is arrested or detained shall be informed in writing within 24 hours (and in a language that he understands) of the facts and grounds for his arrest or detention.)

“Any person who is arrested or detained in accordance with subsection (1) (c) of this section shall be brought before a court of law within a reasonable time.”

Ripples Nigeria had reported that Uzodinma disclosed no fewer than 400 people who caused mayhem or attacks in the state, have been arrested and charged to court.

”Over 400 of those who carried out the threats on the state in the past have been arrested.

”The good thing is that over 70 per cent of them are not Igbo. We will crush anybody that attempts to cause mayhem or attack Imo people again.

”Government cannot surrender to blackmailers, hoodlums, and perpetrators of violence,” he said.

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