Group Rejects Army Panel, Calls For Review Of APO Six Ruling


A pan Igbo sociocultural organisation, Nzuko Umunna, has called on the Federal Government to institute an independent panel to investigate the alleged extra judicial killing of Biafra agitators, saying it has no faith in the military panel set up by the Chief of Army Staff, General Tukur Buratai. 

Nzuko Umunna
Nzuko Umunna

The group also said it has identified elements of travesty of justice in the recent court ruling on the Apo six killing, saying it was strange that officers who obeyed a command were sentenced to death but their superiors who gave the command were let off the hook.

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In a statement signed by its coordinator, Ngozi Odumuko, and Public Relations Officer, Professor Emeka Ezeonu, the group said Buratai’s previous comments on the Biafra agitation where the Army Chief of Staff declared, in reference to moves by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) members that they “cannot achieve their aims in his lifetime” is an indication that the COS is committed to stopping the agitation by all means.

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Part of the statement read thus, “it is noteworthy that General Buratai had denied the extra judicial killings of the members the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) … given these dispositions, there is no doubt that General Butatai’s is an ambush and its findings cannot be taken seriously. This is further buttressed by the lopsidedness of the committee”.

The group reiterated that it does not support violent agitation and called for calm on the part of the already agitated IPOB and other Biafra agitators. It called on the office of the Attorney General of the Federation to ensure that the long arm bends towards justice.

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On the killing of five young Igbo male traders and a female student (the Apo six) on June 7 and 8, 2008 by the police in Abuja, Nzuko Umunna said it has reviewed the judgement of Justice Ishaq Bello of the Federal Capital Territory, delivered on Thursday March 9, 2017 and considers it a travesty of justice.

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The court found two of the accused persons, Ezekiel Acheneje and Baba Emmanuel guilty for their roles in the killing of the Apo six and acquitted and discharged three other officers, including Danjuma Ibrahim, Nicholas Zaka and Sofia Salami, while the sixth accused person, Othman Abdulsalam, the Divisional Police Officer of the station where the execution took place, has mysteriously been at large since the case started and had no legal representation.

The group demanded that “the Attorney General and National Judicial Council reviews this case and assign same to another Judge for trial for proper justice to be seen to be done on the souls of the murdered Apo six … we seriously demand for justice to be done and to be seen to be done on Apo six killings. Only in doing so will the perennial bad tales of extrajudicial killings of innocent and promising young elements for no reasons be stopped.”

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The group said it appreciates the efforts of Justice Ishaq Bello to dispense justice in this matter after 12 years and challenged the Nigeria police and the entire security network to find Othman Abdulsalam and bring him to justice.


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