From Aloysius Attah, Onitsha
A legal practitioner, Mike Ikegbunam, has raised the alarm over the disappearance of a community leader, Elder Emma Nwasor, of Obunasator community in Awka South Local Government Area of Anambra State, from the custody of the Enugu zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Ikegbunam, who is counsel to Obunasator community, briefing reporters in Awka on Monday, said that Obunasator community has been thrown into mourning over the disappearance of their leader.
He said his client was arrested at a Fidelity Bank branch in Awka on Wednesday, December 16, by persons from the EFCC zonal office, but that the Commission agreed to release him on bail when he visited their office on On Thursday, December 17.
‘They gave us their bail form which stipulated the conditions of bail, including that only a level 16 civil servant residing in Enugu can take him on bail. They told us we should perfect his bail condition and take him,’ Ikegbunam told reporters.
‘On Friday, 18th December, I called their staff, Isa Joshua, of the EG department in the zonal office of the Commission, who is in charge of the matter, and he told me that my client was taken that same morning by men of Department of State Services (DSS) to Abuja.’
Ikegbunam said that though the Commission was unable to present him with the petition upon which his client was arrested, Nwasor told him they (EFCC) were asking about some huge sums of money that passed through his account, but he told them the money belonged to the community and that he had the right to disburse it.
The lawyer lamented that his client had gone missing from EFCC custody with his current location unknown.
‘I sent someone there and the zonal head of the EFCC, Johnson Oshodi, told him that my client was now with the Army Intelligence Corps in Abuja. This was the same person that told me that he was taken by DSS. So, we are doubtful about what we should believe.
‘I am appealing to the EFCC headquarters to quickly clear the air on this. They should intervene by prevailing on the zonal head of the Commission, Johnson Oshodi, to bring out my client. We condemn this act because humans should not be treated this way in a democratic society.
‘I know what he is doing is a ploy to keep my client out of circulation until after Christmas. I must also tell them that my client is ill, which they (EFCC) confirmed and said they had bought him medication.’
When contacted, Isa Joshua of the EFCC Enugu zonal office, who is in charge of the matter, accepted that Ikegbunam had been at the Commission to ask for the whereabouts of his client, but added that he does not have the right to speak to the press on the matter, more so as the lawyer had already been in talks with the zonal head.