SSenior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana, has said the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) Chairman, Danladi Umar, risk a five-year jail term for using “Biafran boys” to describe the traders he had an altercation with when he assaulted a security guard at Banex Plaza in Abuja.
Umar was caught on video punching a security guard following a disagreement on the plaza’s parking space.
The CCT Spokesperson, Ibraheem Al-Hassan, had in a statement said the guard threatened Umar, while some “Biafran boys” also harassed him.
Hassan later said it was Umar who asked him to use “Biafran boys” in the statement.
In a statement on Saturday, Falana said the phrase amounted to xenophobia which contravened the cybercrime law.
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Falana said section 26 of the Cybercrimes Act 2015, prohibits the use of “racist or xenophobic material” in any written or printed material.
He added that such a person was liable to be prosecuted for the serious offence and penalty for the offence is five year’s imprisonment and a minimum N10 million fine.”
The statement read, “The use of the words “Biafra Boys” in the statement (produced through a computer system or network) on the instructions of the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal and distributed to the media last week constitutes a contravention of section 26 of the Cybercrimes Act 2015.
“The Act prohibits the use of “racist or xenophobic material” in any written or printed material which advocates, promotes or incites hatred, discrimination or violence, against any individual group of individuals, based on race, colour, descent or national or ethnic origin, as well as a religion if used as a pretext for any of these factors.
“The person alleged to have suggested the use of the xenophobic words is liable to be prosecuted for the serious offence. The penalty for the offence is five year’s imprisonment and a minimum N10 million fine.”
Kogi Police Charge Buhari-Must-Go Protesters For Treasonable Felony
The Kogi State Police Command continued in its deliberate harassment and intimidation of two Buhari-Must-Go protesters mobbed in the Lokoja area, by charging them for treasonable felony and public disturbance.
Okanga Trumpeters learnt on Thursday that the duo – Larry Emmanuel and Victor Udoka – were not brought to court but tried in a Magistrate’s office and remanded in the Kabba prison.
The magistrate, it was further gathered, gave no adjourned date for the matter.
SaharaReporters had on Wednesday reported that the police secretly arraigned the two protesters and ensured that they were remanded at the Kabba Prison – without the knowledge of their lawyers or family members.
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“Larry was charged for inciting public disturbance. Victor was charged for treasonable felony. According to them, the judgment to remand them in prison wasn’t given in a court room. It was in the magistrate’s office at the Lugard’s magistrate court.
“The magistrate said their lawyer should apply for bail. They said it’s the judge in court 7 that gave the judgment. The accused weren’t allowed access to their phones to make calls. The magistrate threw them in prison and gave no adjourned date,” a source explained.
The police authorities backed by the Kogi State government have continued in their desperate attempts to frustrate the two protesters.
This is sequel to the torture which violent youths on Sunday gave the middle-aged protesters who were posting Buhari-Must-Go posters in Lokoja, the Kogi State capital.
SaharaReporters had reported that the irate mob flogged the two youths, filmed them and brutalised them before they were later handed over to the police.
It had been gathered that the police thereafter quizzed the two protesters and detained them when they insisted on seeing their lawyer before making a statement.
“The lawyers have been there for two days now and the police haven’t produced them. The police commissioner in Kogi could not produce anti-Buhari protesters he claimed were in his custody after two days.
“We are hearing they were never returned to police custody after the police handed them over to thugs,” a source in Lokoja had told this newspaper.
Dramatic Week Of Testimony In George Floyd Murder Trial
The opening week of the trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, facing murder and manslaughter charges for the death of George Floyd has featured dramatic and emotional testimony.
Among those taking the stand in the heavily-guarded downtown Minneapolis courtroom have been Floyd’s girlfriend, witnesses to his May 25, 2020 arrest and fellow police officers.
Chauvin, who is white, was seen on video kneeling for more than nine minutes on the neck of Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man who was being detained for using a fake $20 bill in a nearby store.
Here are some of the emotional comments made by witnesses during the first week of the trial.
Frazier, an 18-year-old African-American woman, was walking to the convenience store, Cup Foods, with her eight-year-old cousin when she saw Floyd being arrested.
She began recording and it was her smartphone video that went viral and sparked protests against racial injustice and police brutality across the United States and around the world.
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“It wasn’t right. He was suffering. He was in pain,” Frazier told the nine-woman, five-man jury hearing the case. “I knew it was wrong.
“It’s been nights I stayed up apologizing and apologizing to George Floyd for not doing more and not physically interacting and not saving his life,” she said.
Martin, a 19-year-old cashier at Cup Foods, sold the pack of cigarettes that Floyd paid for with a fake $20 bill.
Martin said he knew at the time that the banknote was counterfeit. “If I would have just not taken the bill, this could have been avoided,” he said.
Floyd appeared to be “high” while in the store but “he seemed to be having an average Memorial Day, just living his life,” Martin said.
Martin said he felt “disbelief and guilt” after learning Floyd had died.
Ross, 45, was Floyd’s girlfriend of nearly three years.
She said they met at a Minneapolis homeless shelter where Floyd worked as a security guard.
She had gone there to visit the father of one of her sons, Ross said, and Floyd saw her looking sad in the lobby and asked if he could “pray” with her.
“It was so sweet,” she said. “I had lost a lot of faith in God.”
Ross acknowledged that both she and Floyd had struggled with opioid addiction.
“We both suffered from chronic pain,” she said. “Mine was in my neck and his was in his back.”
“We got addicted and tried really hard to break that addiction, many times.”
Lieutenant Richard Zimmerman
Zimmerman, the longest-serving officer in the Minnesota Police Department, said Chauvin’s use of force against Floyd was “totally unnecessary” and violated department policies.
“Pulling him down to the ground facedown and putting your knee on a neck for that amount of time, it’s just uncalled for,” he said.
Zimmerman said he had reviewed bystander video and police bodycam footage and he “saw no reason why the officers felt they were in danger.”
“Once a person is cuffed, the threat level goes down, all the way,” he said. “They’re cuffed. How can they really hurt you?”
Williams, 33, was among the crowd of bystanders urging the officers holding Floyd down to get off of him.
“You could see that he was trying to gasp for air, trying to breathe,” Williams said. “You could see his eyes slowly rolling back in his head.”
Williams, a mixed martial arts instructor, said Floyd was being held by Chauvin in a “blood choke” and he saw him lose consciousness.
Williams made an emergency 911 call after Floyd was taken away by ambulance.
“Murderers, bro… they just killed that man in front of the store,” he told the 911 operator.
Smith, a paramedic, said Chauvin still had his knee on Floyd’s neck when he arrived but he believed Floyd was already dead.
He checked the carotid artery in Floyd’s neck to see if he had a pulse. “I did not feel one,” Smith said. “In lay terms, I thought he was dead.”
Smith said he and his partner attempted to revive Floyd in the ambulance but their efforts were unsuccessful.
“He’s a human being and I was trying to give him a second chance at life,” he said.
How Nigerian Police Illegally Detained U.S Citizen For 44 Days
Kari O’Rourke, a U.S. citizen, has been released from police custody in Lagos, following her illegal arrest and detention over a murder allegation.
She was illegally arrested and detained by the Nigeria Police Force for 44 days for the death of her Nigerian host.
According to Channels TV, Ms O’Rourke’s legal representation, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, confirmed her release in a statement on Thursday.
Mr Adegboruwa, who shared a photograph he took with O’Rourke after her release, said she regained her freedom on Wednesday.
She was arrested at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos on February 8 as she was about to depart the country.
The autopsy report, following investigation, revealed that the host died of heart trauma and cardiac arrest.
Mr Adegboruwa’s services were then engaged to challenge her detention when it proved abortive to get her released on bail. A suit was filed at the Lagos Division of the Federal High on March 18.
In the suit, Ms O’Rourke sought declarations against her arrest and detention, an order for her immediate release, and N100 million damages against the police.
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It was discovered that Ms O’Rourke’s case file had been sent to the Lagos State Ministry of Justice and that a legal opinion had been issued by the Director of Public Prosecutions, saying that there was no prima facie case, hence there was no basis for prosecution.
This discovery facilitated her release.
The document dated March 5, 2021, and signed by the DPP, noted, “In the light of the above, this office shall not prosecute the suspects … for the offences of conspiracy to murder and murder … They should, therefore, be discharged and released if still in custody, as there is no case to be established against them from the facts presented in the duplicate case file.”
Mr Adegboruwa appealed to the police to show greater respect for the rights of citizens and condemned the police’s failure to comply with directives from the Ministry of Justice.
The police in Nigeria are notorious for extortion, brutality, and other human rights violations, particularly its SARS unit, now disbanded.
Hundreds of thousands of Nigerian youths protested, for several days, the extortion and brutality they suffer in the hands of policemen in the country.
Various reforms, even in the wake of the #EndSARS movement and eventual protests, have not stopped the incorrigible Nigerian policemen from brutalising and extorting Nigerians, even foreigners
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