Chief of Staff to Abia State governor, A.C.B Agbazuere, has called on the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to investigate why Gabriel Ogbonna, an Aba-based lawyer, is detained by the Department of State Security (DSS).
Agbazuere, who made the call in a reply to a letter by the NBA national headquarters, insisted that Governor Okezie Ikpeazu and the state government have no hand in Ogbonna’s current travail with the DSS.
He also said Ogbonna is been held by the DSS for making divisive and subversive comments on his Facebook page against President Muhammadu Buhari and the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“My attention has been drawn to a statement issued by NBA National Publicity Secretary, Kunle
Edun, with regard to one Ogbonna.
“I have asked questions and I understand that the said Ogbonna was arrested because he had made divisive and subversive comments on his Facebook page against President Buhari and the country referring to Nigeria as an Islamic Republic, calling for the impeachment of the president and the removal of northern states from Nigeria, describing Northern Nigeria as an illiterate population and the biggest problem of the country and inciting comments that Buhari hates the Igbo.
“Facts put forward by NBA, Aba branch which NBA, national relied on are false, erroneous and misleading.
“The governor reported this case of cybercrime to the police and the police arrested Ogbonna and charged him before the Federal High Court in Umuahia for cybercrime and not terrorism as the
misinformation from NBA, Aba opines.
“On April 28, 2020, the Federal High Court in Umuahia granted Ogbonna bail and adjourned the matter to May 25, 2020 for hearing. We are ready to prosecute the case. No government official attended the court on the said date.”
Agbazuere accused NBA, Aba of misleading the NBA headquarters, saying: “The NBA headquarters and the public can now see that NBA, Aba carried their emotions too far and thus misinformed NBA headquarters, hence the unwarranted and manifestly embarrassing statement.
“I know that the NBA leadership will never support crime but I am nonetheless appalled that my NBA could hurriedly issue a statement on an issue without hearing from the other side, not even a phone call to any official of the Abia State government. This is bad.
“No one is above the law and Ogbonna, as a lawyer, should have known the consequences of his actions and that Nigeria has a Cyber Crime Act,” Agbazuere said.