Thursday, 15 March 2018

IMSO tasks Media on objectivity reporting as Gov. Obiano begins second missionary journey

IMSO tasks Media on objectivity reporting as Gov. Obiano begins second missionary journey

By Okechukwu Onuegbu

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The Executive Director, Independent Media Support Organization (IMSO) and convener, Anambra Media Practitioners (CAMP), Ogbuefi  Harris Chuma has scored Governor Willie Obiano above average in his first term, adding that his second term in office would be better.

Harris, who stated this in Awka during the 2018 Concerned Anambra Media Practitioners Summit entitled “Role of Media in Sustaining Proactive Governance”, noted that the governor and his supporters have put necessary machineries in place to ensuring that the new administration which commences on March 17, 2018 will record resounding and fruitful successes across diverse sectors.

He, however, adviced journalists and media practitioners to join in promoting the good works of the governor, which according to him, include road construction, education, healthcare, caring for the aged, youth empowerment and security.
“Not just highlighting government's works, media should always educate the people on the need to pay taxes, on the need to monitor government projects, on the need to rate performances of government contractors, on the need to report corruption.

“The media as the watchdog should carry out their primary function of promoting accountability, transparency and public scrutiny, noting that media remained the most important source of information for the wider public. Government needs it as a tool to get the exposure on her policies and gain as much support as possible. The media must propagate and highlight civic duties of the citizens as a way of helping the government to shore up her resources in order to deliver to the people.”

Sunday, 11 March 2018

Tuesday, 6 March 2018

A Police officer dies in Umunze/SARS clash, CP Garba confirms

A Police officer dies in Umunze/SARS clash, CP Garba confirms

By Okechukwu Onuegbu
 Image result for pictures of Anambra state commissioner of Police
The Anambra State Commissioner of Police, Garba Umar has confirmed the death of a police officer at recent mayhem at Umunze, headquarters of Orumba South Local Government Area.

Umar, who made the disclosure in a press release made available to Orient Daily, explained that some suspects behind the unrest were equally arrested and would be charged to Court to face the Law so as to serve as deterrence to others.

According to the CP release, trouble started on 2nd March 2018, when police officers from Zone 9 Umuahia came on investigation activities in respect of a petition addressed to the Assistant Inspector General of Police in-charge of Zone 9 on a matter bothering on conduct likely to cause breach of peace and possible breakdown of Law and Order relating to issue of Land.

“However, when the team got to UMUNZE, the Youths attacked them with dangerous weapons, and the Policemen sustained severe injuries which resulted in the death of a Policeman.

“The area was reinforced by Police team to calm the situation but the Youths were still violent and some of them were arrested. The Command wishes to let the public know that no individual is above the Law, and we are out to protect the lives and property of the citizens and also to ensure that there is no breakdown of Law and Order,” it added.

He, however, however warns all youths to desist from violent activities and embrace peace as the command would not relent in safeguarding lives and properties of Anambrarians.

“We want to assure the people of Anambra State and particularly the people of UMUNZE to remain calm and go about their normal business activities without any fear of molestation, attack and harassment. We also implore all parents and guardians to call their children and wards to Order,” he noted.


Image result for Daniel Elombah brothers
From Chuks Collins, Awka
March 4,2018
An Abuja Federal High Court presided over by Justice Gabriel Kolawole has adjourned further hearing to May 3,2018 in the suit brought against two brothers Messrs Daniel and Timothy Elombah, by the Inspector General of Police (IGP),-Ibrahim Kpotun Idris accusing them of "Biafra terrorism", Cyber stalking and cyber bullying. 
This is apparently the first such suit brought against journalists in the country.
The two journalist brothers who were abducted by men of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad from the office of the IGP in a commando fashion from their Nnewi countryhome in the early hours of New year day -Jan 1,2018 have pleaded not guilty to the four count charge of cyber crime and terrorism brought against them. They operate a website
Their Uruagu Nnewi home was on the said date invaded by a truck load of viscously armed police officers who stormed the village in a convoy of vehicles and many family members were cuffed before their parents, wives, children and guests and bundled into the waiting vehicles.
Enquiries revealed that the brothers were arrested on allegations that they published an article critical of the he IGP, Mr. Idris, who then deployed officers and public resources to track them down.
While Daniel, a London-based attorney and his other brothers were granted bail after so much pressure from several international bodies and embassies, with a stern warning not to leave Abuja even when he had no relation or residence there, Timothy was detained for about one month.
One of the Charge read out in court Thursday accused Timothy Elombah of publishing an article called “Roadmap to Biafra”, which police alleged intended to commit a “crime against humanity”.
The police also accused the brothers of publishing the insulting and critical article against their boss -Idris on their website, And that the brothers knew that the article was defamatory but went ahead to run and publicized it.
The Elombahs however denied defaming the IGP, saying they never published the article for which they were being charged.
The counsel for the journalists, Mr Festus Keyamo, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria(SAN) deplored the charges brought against them, saying "it is a shame that people are still being put on trial at this age over something they said about those in power..."
The court documents made availability to journalists who had thronged the court for the much-waited trial revealed that the Elombah brothers were charged for cyber crime, cyber stalking, and cyber bullying of the IGP, Ibrahim Kpotun Idris; and for “championing Biafra terrorism”.



from Chuks Collins, Awka

March 5,2018

The American Bar Association (ABA)has shown committed interest and actually taken up the case of unlawful arrest and illegal detention of the Elombah brothers.
The brothers who are journalists and publishers of the popular website-Elombah.comincludes Daniel Elombah, a London-based lawyer, and his sibling Timothy -a Nigeria-based journalist, who were whisked away in a criminal fashion by the police in the early hours of the new year day from their village in Nnewi were on March 1,2018 charged for cyber crime-cyber stalking/cyber bullying Nigeria's Inspector General of Police(IGP), and terrorism leveled against them by the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Kpotum Idris.
The Sub-Saharan Africa Center for Human Rights staff Attorney, of the American Bar Association, Mrs. Mooya Nyaundi ‏had in a mail written the Elombahs seeking their consent to intervene fully on their behalf in the matter.
According to Nyaundi, her office had been following the case against Daniel and Tim Elombah with keen interest and that the ABA Center for Human Rights, through its Justice Defenders program (JD) was in a position to assist in this case.
During the formal arraignment Thursday, March 1,2018, at the Federal High Court 5, Abuja, the ABA sent a representative, Barrister Eze Eluchie, to monitor proceedings requesting to be furnished with detailed update.
Mrs. Nyaundi, has assured that she will be physically present to monitor the proceedings during the next adjourned date of May 3, 2018, to assess the case by herself.
ABA JusticeDefenders had noted in its social media wall shortly after the March 1,2018 proceedings, “ABA trial observer reports from #Nigeria arraignment of Journalists @Elombah & @ElsTimmy: Both pleaded not guilty to all charges including cyber-crime and terrorism. They’ve been granted bail, case is adjourned to 3 May, 2018. ABA will continue monitoring their trial @angelaquintal @CPJAfrica.
“The ABA Center for Human Rights has sent an observer to #Nigeria to monitor the trial of @ElsTimmy and @Elombah to ensure that their legal harassment does not result in continued judicial harassment. We will seek to ensure they are given a fair trial, free of violations.”
Mrs. Nyaundi explained that the Justice Defenders Program was an emergency response program that provides pro bono legal assistance to human rights advocates facing retaliation for their legitimate human rights work.
According to her, “JD provides a range of assistance, including technical legal assistance and advocacy, which can be tailored to the needs in a specific case and country”.
She narrated some potential ways in which the JD Program supports human rights advocates as follows:
a) “Providing pro bono technical legal support to local counsel representing political prisoners, protesters, journalists, and others who are facing retaliation for exercising and defending basic rights.
Our pro bono lawyers with expertise in a particular area of law, such as freedom of expression or assembly, can prepare research and analysis into comparative and international law and consult on potential litigation strategies.
b) “Conduct trial monitoring by sending observers in the name of the ABA.
“Trial observations encourage the courts to respect fair trial rights and also help to raise the profile of a case as part of our advocacy efforts.
c) “Recruit pro bono lawyers to represent detained human rights defenders at regional and international bodies, such as the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention or the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, and to assist in international advocacy and campaign work.
“In addition, the Program’s pro bono legal experts are available to support efforts to revise and challenge laws that are affecting the ability of advocates to operate, such as overly broad counterterrorism or public order acts that impermissibly restrict the legitimate exercise of basic rights, such as freedom of expression, association, and assembly.
“For example, our independent experts have analyzed such laws and then provided recommendations to government officials and/or national civil society groups to take forward in order to bring the laws into conformity with international standards,” she added.
Also, another international group -the Committee to Protect Journalists(CPJ) Africa has retweeted on its handle @CPJAfrica, statement by its Program Coordinator Angela Quintal,@AngelaQuintal, from New York:
“#Nigeria: “Timothy and Daniel Elombah are journalists and not terrorists who should be free to continue their #journalism without legal harassment or fear of going to jail. Authorities should drop all legal proceedings against them.”
See below, the attached a copy of the letter addressed to the Federal High Court indicating intents to observe the case: