Imo government reacts after ICIR report on detention of IBC staff

FOLLOWING a report by the International Centre for Investigative Reporting (The ICIR) on the continued detention of an Imo Broadcasting Corporation (IBC) staff, Casmir Uzomah, the state government has issued a statement.

The Imo State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Declan Emelumba, who released the statement on Monday, October 10, exonerated the government and IBC of Uzomah’s arrest.

Emelumba said the detainee aired material which could “threaten national security”, an action he described as the “height of impudence and wilful subversion.”

Emelumba stated, “This seditious and highly subversive song described the governor of the state, His Excellency, Senator Hope Uzodimma, as a murderer, a vampire and sucker of blood. It was as bad as that, and, indeed, worse. Yet an employee of the government had the audacity to air the song in a state-owned radio station.






     

     

    “That was a clear case of criminal libel against a man who has never been accused of a high crime nor convicted by a court of law. The aim, of course, was not just to disparage the governor but to maliciously damage his reputation and to incite the public against the government.”

    On October 8, The ICIR reported that Uzomah had been detained since August 4, after the State Security Service (SSS) invited him for questioning.

    The detainee’s wife, Onyinyechi, who is unemployed, told The ICIR that Uzomah’s continuous incarceration had made things difficult for her and their five children.

    The security operatives have not granted family members access to him since the arrest.

    Ijeoma Opara is a journalist with The ICIR. Reach her via [email protected] or @ije_le on Twitter.

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