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APC Supporters Protest Arrest Of Speaker, Other Officers Of Edo Assembly
Hundreds of supporters of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Thursday morning staged a protest in Benin to oppose the arrest and detention of three principal officers of the Edo State House of Assembly by the Economic Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
Those detained are the Speaker, Uyi Igbe, the Majority Leader, Philip Shaibu, and the Chief Whip, Folly Ogedegbe.
The arrested lawmakers had announced, last Monday during plenary, that the anti graft agency invited them to appear in its Abuja office on Wednesday, linking the invitation, which they described as persecution, to the ongoing crisis in the State Assembly.
As a result, the protesters went round the Ring Road in Benin with placards and later assembled at the state secretariat of the APC, located at Airport Road.
Shaibu, had two weeks ago, announced that he had been compelled to appear before the EFCC about 18 times in the recent past.
Addressing journalists this morning at the premises of the vandalised legislators’ quarters, the chairman of the House committee on Information, Kabiru Adjoto, decried what he and other legislators called “negative development” in the state.
He said information reaching them indicated that the three officials of the House, who were arrested on Wednesday, are being investigated for allegedly forging the signature of Abdul-Razak Momoh, during the impeachment of former Deputy Speaker, Festus Ebea.
Adjoto said they were being kept under inhuman conditions and denied medical attention, adding that the Speaker, allegedly collapsed twice Thursday morning, while Shaibu bled “profusely” from his injured hand after the EFCC operatives forcefully removed the bandage on the injury he sustained during the attack on the legislative quarters in the morning of last Saturday.
“President Goodluck Jonathan is aware of this and has given instructions that our colleagues should be detained indefinitely. Every EFCC officials spoken to said the directive is from the Presidency,” Adjoto said.
He advised the anti graft agency to go and investigate other serious cases of financial corruption in the country and stop chasing shadow in Edo state.