Early on Tuesday, 28th April, 2020, we went to the Akwa Ibom State Command of the SSS in Uyo to see and demand the release of our client, Mr Kufre Carter, who was arrested and detained on Monday.
Mr. Augustine Asuquo, the Deputy Head of Inibehe Chambers was denied access into the SSS premises. He waiting for several hours in the hope that the SSS will respect basic constitutional rights of our client, which includes the right to visitation by a counsel of his choice.
Despite contacting the Director of the SSS and the Director of Operations, our colleague was denied access into the premises. After they asked him to wait outside the premises for several hours, they finally told him to go that “they will send for him whenever they need him”.
Our client has not eaten since he reported voluntarily at the SSS Command in Uyo on Monday. He has also not had his bath. He has been tortured & treated like a common criminal on the instigation of the state government without legal basis. They have not charged him to any court.
All these is happening because of a purported audio conversation that the SSS alleged that our client had with a doctor over the handling of COVID-19. We also wish to alert Nigerians of the sinister role being played by the Manager and other staff of XL FM where our client works.
It would be recalled that the Uyo-based “private” radio station issued a false and baseless press statement accusing our client of fictional and imaginary acts.
Instead of defending the rights of their employee, XL FM decided to massage the insatiable ego of the Akwa Ibom State
Government by playing the Devil’s Advocate.
XL FM offered its employee to the Akwa Ibom State Government and the SSS as a sacrificial lamb over a matter that does not concern the radio station.
While we were still reviewing legal actions that we may take against XL FM,
we were shocked to see the Manager of XL FM, Mr. Utibe Ukim, and other staff of the radio station at the SSS Command on Tuesday.
While our client has been denied access to his lawyers for the past two days, Mr. Ukim went into the premises where he held a nocturnal meeting with
the SSS officials in our absence.
Nigerians should ask Mr. Ukim what he went to do at the SSS Command and whose interest he is currently representing in this case?
Whose Pipper is dictating the tunes of Mr. Utibe and his associates at XL FM?
Is this what journalism has become in Nigeria and Akwa Ibom State in particular?
We want to reassure the SSS and the Akwa Ibom State Government that this cowardly attempt to intimidate us will fail.
People fought and died to chase the military out of power in Nigeria.
We will not allow the sacrifices of our heroes past to be in vain.
We will confront & defeat the Little Tyrant of Akwa Ibom State.
We’re exploring available legal options to secure the release of our client even as we continue to demand the unconditional release of our client.
Nobody, no agency of government, and no politician or political office holder is above the law.
28th April, 2020.