Senator Abaribe in court after arrest by DSS

Senator Abaribe in court after arrest by DSS

Senator Enyinninya Abaribe was yesterday released after four days in the custody of the Department of State Services, DSS. Senator Abaribe was released in the evening, yesterday, according to close associates. The senator, who is chairman of the Senate Southeast caucus could not be immediately reached as at press time yesterday. Abaribe was arraigned yesterday at the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, with protesters besieging the court and demanding his release. The senator was arrested and detained over his alleged link with the proscribed Indigenuos People of Biafra, IPOB. Trial Justice Binta Nyako earlier refused an oral application the embattled lawmaker who is representing Abia South Senatorial District, made through his lawyer, Chukwuma-Machukwu Umeh, SAN, seeking the court’s intervention. The development came on a day scores of protesters besieged the high court premises demanding the immediate release of the detained lawmaker. The protesters who brandished various placards, maintained that Abaribe was victimized for being a vocal critic of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration. The Senator who has been in detention for five days, was brought to court from DSS detention center for continuation of the trial of ‘missing’ leader of the IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu. At the resumed proceeding, Umeh, SAN, drew attention of the trial Judge to Abaribe’s plight, lamenting that his client who was one of the three persons that stood as sureties for the IPOB leader, was arrested and held incommunicado by the DSS. “May I orally apply that your lordship order the security service holding him to release him so that the tension outside can come down,” Umeh urged the court. Abaribe’s arrest has nothing to do with my court—Judge The prayer was however turned down by Justice Nyako who stressed that Abaribe’s arrest had nothing to do with the case before her court. “The arrest has nothing to do with this case because I did not order his arrest. The DSS is not an extension of the court and I did not order his arrest”, Justice Nyako insisted. “If he has been arrested without any justification, you know what to do. So don’t bring the drama outside to my court. “I have nothing to do with the arrest. I did not make any order for his arrest, so it has nothing to do with me. How can I order his release when I don’t know what they arrested him for,” the Judge queried. Nevertheless, Justice Nyako who asked both Abaribe and leader of the DSS operatives that brought him to court to stand up for identification, ordered the security agency to grant the lawmaker access to his lawyers. “You cannot hold him incommunicado. For whatever reason you have arrested him, allow him access to his counsel”, Justice Nyako told the DSS team leader.

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