The Nigerian police must release Emeh Nnamdi or immediately charge him to court if he is found to have committed any crime, the Civil Society Coalition Against Impunity said today.
26-year-old Mr. Emeh Nnamdi, a serving member of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and an IT consultant to the Anambra state police command has been in detention in Abuja since 3 March 2023 after he was arrested in Benin Republic for revealing shocking details about police extortion, torture, extrajudicial executions, and organ harvesting by senior police officers in Anambra state.
On Sunday 2 April 2023, Mr. Emeh was transferred to the Anambra state police command where he is currently facing further interrogation. Among his interrogators in Anambra state are senior police officers whom he had indicted for seizing posh vehicles recovered from criminal suspects who were later executed in police custody.
The civil society groups in a 28 signatory statement obtained by AbaCityBlog said continue detention of Mr Emeh offends the principle of natural justice, which espouses that one should not be a judge in one’s own case.
“We urge the Nigerian police to immediately release him or charge him for a recognized offense”, the CSO said.
“We believe that Emeh Nnamdi could be at risk of ill-treatment or extrajudicial execution if he is not released or charged to court immediately.
“We believe that whistleblowers are vital for a transparent society. When exercising the right to inform and be informed and the right of people to the truth, whistleblowers play a crucial part. They are essential to awakening informed debate within public opinion, crucial to opening up investigations by journalists and necessary for questioning decision-makers.
“Whistleblowers are a vital link in the promotion of human rights, the rule of law, transparency, accountability, social justice, and the fight against corruption.
“Therefore, the undersigned organizations are calling on the Nigerian police to:
- Immediately release and drop the charges against Mr. Emeh Nnamdi or charge him to court with a recognizable offense.
- The police authorities must end the intimidation, harassment, and attacks on Mr Emeh, his family, and friends.
- Ensure that the report of panel set up by the police authorities to investigate the allegation against top police officers in Anambra state is released promptly and everybody indicted prosecuted according to the law.
On 16 February 2023, Gistlover an anonymous whistle-blowing website revealed the shocking details about how senior police officers in Zone 13 and Anambra state command were involved in extortion, extrajudicial execution, enforced disappearance, and organ harvesting of detainees in their custody.
The story was corroborated by video evidence of former detainees who were forced to confess to serious crimes and were shortly made to disappear. Some families of the victims have since corroborated the story.
Shortly after the revelation, Nigerian Police authorities announced that it will launch a full-scale investigation into the allegations, but instead of taking the accused police officers into custody, it declared Emeh Nnamdi, who works with the accused police team, wanted for sundry offenses. It is believed that he must have passed the vital information to Gistlover blog.
1. Access To Justice
2. Avocats Sans Frontières France / Lawyers Without Border
3. Sterling Law Centre
4. Rule of Law and Accountability Advocacy Centre (RULAAC),
5. Centre for Human Rights Advocacy and Wholesome Society ( CEHRAWS).
6. Human Rights Social Development and Environmental Foundation (HURSDEF)
7. International Human Rights and Equity Defense Foundation (I-REF).
8. The Coordinator, African Centre for Media and Information Literacy (AFRICMIL)
9. Foundation for Civic Education, Human Rights and Development Advancement (FoCEHRaDA
10. Centre For Environment, Human Rights And Development, CEHRD.
11. Media Awareness and Justice Initiative
12. Life Wire International Foundation
13. Nigerian Anti-death Penalty Coalition
14. Justice for Peace and Development Initiative (JPDI)
15. Legal Resources Consortium (LRC)
16. Workers and Youth Solidarity Network
17. Social Action
18. Cross River Watch
19. Rivers State Civil Society Organization
20. . NOPRIN Foundation
21. . Elixir Trust Foundation
22. Center For Citizens With Disability (CCD)
23. Advocacy for Alleged Witches.
24. Samuel Ihensekhien Jnr
25. Nde Oduko Foundation
26. Anthony Opara – Difference Newspapers Lagos
27. Civil Liberties Organisation(CLO)
28. Nigerian Observatory For Human Rights