More protests have continued to greet the continued incarceration of the Chairman of Capital Oil and Gas Industries Ltd, Dr. Patrick Ifeanyi Ubah, who has been at the detention cell of the Department of State Services (DSS) since May 6.
Some of the protesting groups insist that the refusal of the DSS to release Dr. Ifeanyi Ubah, even at the instance of a competent court, is a threat to the country’s democracy and a breach of his fundamental human right.
The groups were of the opinion that what the capital oil boss is being accused of could be resolved in a law court.
One of the groups, under the aegis of Nnewi Sports Club, which protested the detention of Ifeanyi Ubah yesterday in Nnewi, Ubah’s country home, tasked the DSS to do the needful and release him as ordered by the Lagos High Court presided over by Justice Idris.
The group, led by the duo of Engr. Nwabueze Udezue and Mr. Anthony Nduka, president and secretary of the group respectively, carried placards and marched to the palace of the traditional ruler of the community, HRH Igwe Kenneth Orizu III, singing pro-Ifeanyi Ubah songs and urging the Federal Government to call the officers of the DSS to order.
Some of the inscriptions in the placards read: “Chief (Dr.) Ifeanyi Ubah deserves fair hearing, let DSS obey court order and release him; Is there no more justice and fair play in Nigeria? Ifeanyi Ubah deserves justice, let the rule of law prevail; DSS, release Dr. Ifeanyi Ubah as ordered by the court”, among many other inscriptions.
In a press release issued at the end of the solidarity protest and made available to newsmen, the members of Nnewi Sports Club, in strong terms, condemned the continued detention of Dr. Patrick Ifeanyi Ubah by the DSS, and called on the organization to release him unconditionally.
The statement read in part: “We, by this press release, appeal to the Federal Government to consider the fate of the numerous workers employed by Ubah’s companies in Nigeria and release the detained oil magnate or charge him to court, if the case demands so.
“We, as a body, are aware of Dr. Ifeanyi Ubah’s contributions to the economic growth and employment generation in Nigeria; thus, the dire need to save thousands of workers under his employ.
“Our fears are that the continued detention of the CEO of Capital Oil and Gas Industries Ltd, Dr. Patrick Ifeanyi Ubah, without trial, will not only lead to the sack of over 5,000 workers directly and indirectly engaged by his companies, but will also send frightening signals to investors in Nigeria”, it said.
The statement, which was jointly signed by the president of the group, Nwabueze Udezue and its secretary, Anthony Nduka, also called on the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, to intervene in this matter to halt the impending massive job loss in Ifeanyi Ubah’s companies.
The group also requested for unconditional release of Dr. Ubah in the face of intimidation and adjudged illegal detention by the DSS, which, according to them, is against the norms of democracy and the ethics of the law.
“We condemn a situation where people are detained and refused bail, even at the instance of a recognized court of competent jurisdiction. The refusal of DSS to respect court order is unconstitutional and picks holes at the very foundation of our legal system”, the statement added.
In a similar development, another group under the umbrella of Campaign for Democracy, CD, has called for the immediate and unconditional release of the Capital Oil boss, insisting that the transaction between the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and Capital Oil and Gas is such that could be settled in the court or even out of court; not such that would lead to the unwarranted incarceration of the capital oil boss.
In a statement made available to The AUTHORITY in Onitsha yesterday, after its emergency meeting presided by its South East Chairman, Dede Uzor A. Uzor, the group called on the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo to caution the officials of the DSS, adding that the activities of the security organization do not conform to the norms and ethics of the law.