A group of human rights lawyers have petitioned the Inspector General of Police, demanding a thorough investigation of the alleged extra judicial killing of a final Law student of the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Mr Augustine Ugwu, by an officer of the Nigerian Police, Nsukka, in connivance with a group known as “Anti-cult Nsukka Local Government.
The petition, a copy of which was made available to this media house, was signed on behalf of the human rights lawyers by Messrs Salawo Momohsani Oricha Esq, of Da Sphinix Legal Practitioners & Solicitors, based in Abuja.
The law firm, which, according to the petition, is acting on the instruction and brief of the parents and siblings of the deceased, allege that the late student, Augustine Ugwu, was arrested by the anti-cult group at a beer palour where he had gone to have a drink with his friends. According to the petition, one of the anti-cult members allegedly shot the deceased on his legs before taking him in their vehicle, a Toyota Sienna minivan, to the anti-cult office in Nsukka, where the police officer in charge, Dsp Dsp Ochin Finian Nnamdi allegedly fired the shots that eventually killed the boy without any allegations levelled against him.
They therefore demanded justice, insisting that “no one is entitled to take away the life of any person and this is adequately protected by the Nigerian Constitution which is the supreme law of the land. It is the primary duty of the police to protect lives and properties and save humanities from extinction. The global world is watching and the Nigeria society is expecting Justice.”
The petition, which also accused the Chairman of Nsukka Local Government Area, Mr Patrick Omeje of using the anti-cult group for clandestine political purposes, reads in part:
“We are a team of human right lawyers briefed by the family of Retired Dsp Andy Ugwu of Owukpa in Ogbudigbo Local Government of Benue State represented by Andy Ugwu (father), Mrs. Blessing Ugwu (daughter) and Friday Ugwu (1st son) but currently living at Block D Umeano Quarters close to Nsukka high school Nsukka, on whose instruction and entire society we write.
“On their instruction and brief, it was made known to the office that, their son, Augustine Ugwu, a final year law student of Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka (Unizik) upon this lockdown following the efforts of government to contain the Covid 19 pandemic, returned from school to stay with his family at Nsukka. On 23rd of April 2020, he went to drink with two of his friends in a shop at Odobido Street Nsukka, where one man, Emeka Ogbu; (alias Mekeke) is the manager of the shop. In a swift action that happened not so long after they entered, a team of armed men in a Toyota Sienna minivan, painted black with an inscription, Anti Cult, Nsukka Local Government, came and all the occupants came down from the vehicle with different guns: Pump Action and revolvers.
“Further in our instruction it was said that one Oliver Ozioko (Alias Oliver Plaza) led them, wielding a Pump Action in his hands and acting like a “RAMBO” and entered the office demanding for “Austin” as the victim was popularly called. But the shop manager demanded for explanation but they pointed gun at him. It was noted that the Anti-cult Nsukka Local Government was set up by Hon Patrick Omeje the Chairman of Nsukka Local Government to fight political opposition and suppress people who one way or the other, disagreed with his style and approach. They act as his attack dogs and carry out his clandestine desires and arrangements.
“The boy Austin agreed to follow the armed men, but at the point of entering the vehicle that brought the group, “Oliver plaza” pulled the trigger and shot at him on the leg, causing him to fall down. He was thus pulled into the vehicle with his leg shattered by bullets fired at close range and driven away.
“People followed them behind as they drove to Anti cult office headed by DSP Ochin Finian Nnamdi, who on sighting the crowd, chased everybody away including lawyers who were in his office to solicit for the bail of some suspects in his custody.
“According to the information, DSP Ochin Finian shot and finally killed the boy upon arrival at the anti-cult office in cold blood and without recourse to due process of the law. He then took him to a hospital mortuary yet unknown to deposit the corpse.
“There were no charges of any crime brought against the young man to warrant killing him, hence the need to establish “murder case” against all the parties involved.
“In the real sense of the law, the Anti cult police has only the authority to arrest and prosecute someone in the law courts, for offences punishable with not more than 10 years (which is belonging to unlawful association).
“If Austin had committed murder, there is a homicide section in the state head- quarters of the police in Enugu State to handle the matter. If Austin were an armed robber, there is SARS (Special anti-robbery squad) in Enugu and Nsukka who treat armed robbery cases.
_It was discovered that every dirty deal perpetrated by Hon Patrick Omeje is perfected through his, Chief Security Officer, TOCO- B, the Anti-cult or killer squad and then the OC Anti-cult, Dsp Ochin Finian Nnamdi.
“Sir, this is a calculated murder, extra Judicial killing and similar things have been going on in this small community Nsukka secretly.”