MASSOB Leader, 280 others remanded in prison


Information available to indicates that the leader of MASSOB, Chief Ralph Uwazurike has been remanded in prison along with 280 members of MASSOB who were arrested yesterday [August 24, 2011] at the award event in Enugu. They were charged for treason at an Enugu State Magistrate court on Thursday August 25, 2011. Bail was denied and the case was postponed indefinitely [Sine die]. In particular, they were charged with planning to overthrow the South East governors of Nigeria on August 24, 2011 under the guise of attending an award event. This is according to State Security Service [SSS] report receivedby The court session began 11am and ended 2pm. The rowdy court session was held outside at the car park of the court house because the court did not contain the over 300 people that had showed up to court. The court session was presided over by Dennis Ekoh who is a former magistrate and the current registrar at the Enugu high court. He was borrowed from the Enugu High Court for this hearing. According to eyewitness report, the borrowed magistrate, Dennis Ekoh, was said to already be signing the reprimand order before the court began hearing at 11am. He was said to be penning his signature on the order in the open court before the accused could present their arguements for bail. The eyewitness added that a fight was on the verge of erupting between the defence lawyers and the prosecuting lawyers who came with the police officers. The borrowed Majistrate, in refusing to grant bail, indicated that he is refusing to grant bail because the Magistrate Court has no jurisdiction to decide on bail matters in cases concerning treason. He then remanded the 281 MASSOB members to prison. Highly credible sources indicate that the soiled relationship between the Governor Anambra State, Mr. Peter Obi and the MASSOB leader which dates back to the period when Gov Peter Obi, in 2004/5, ordered for the Nigerian militay to “shoot at sight” all suspected MASSOB membersmay have precipitated the August 24, 2011 arrest. Gov Peter Obi’s order was not received well by the MASSOB leader who was incarcerated at the time the statement was made. But the relationship between the two did not completely sour till the two attended the burial of Ojukwu [Ikemba]’s relative in Enugu last year. And Gov Peter Obi who was not with his security men closeby, found himself manhandled by the MASSOB members in revenge for the “shoot at sight” order handed to the Nigerian Army. It became an embarrassing incident for the governor of Anambra State. The source who spoke to our correspondent indicated that it was the same organizer of the Igbo Youth Movement event that scuttled the Concorde Hotel meeting of Igbo leaders during the run up to the Presidential election. He is said to be the one that petitioned the police that the Igbo leaders [Dr. Alex Ekwueme and company] were coming to Imo State to plot against the country. Reacting, the then Ikedi Ohakim promptly reacted to order the police to lockup the Hotel. stay tuned




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