Lawyers to Kassim Afegbua, the spokesperson to Ibrahim Banagida, a former head of state, have alleged that there seems to be a ploy to scare their client to submission after he was allegedly declared wanted by the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).
In a statement by Kayode Ajulo & Co Castle of Law in Abuja, Afegbua’s lawyers claimed their client was never invited by the police even though they knew he was not on the run.
The lawyers said the law enforcement agents cannot say they do not know Afegbua’s residences in Abuja and Benin where he served in the state’s cabinet.
“Our client, Prince Kassim Afegbua ‘s attention has just been drawn to a malicious news item on Nigeria Television Authority alleging that the Nigeria Police has declared him wanted over a statement he issued on behalf of former military president, General Ibrahim Babangida, GCFR.
“Prince Afegbua, is a well-known journalist and was a cabinet member of Edo state government with a known address in Benin, Edo state and Abuja, yet he is not on notice of the police invitation whatsoever, before the purported publication declaring him wanted.
“For the avoidance of doubt, there are spelt-out procedures for declaring a person wanted by the police. The police or other law enforcement agencies can declare a person wanted if they find reasons to do so, particularly if the person is a suspect in the commission of a crime and is on the run.
“The public must know that our client, in discharging his duty to his principal, General Ibrahim Babangida, GCFR, cannot by any stretch of the imagination be said to have committed a crime that warrants such negative publicity. Neither is he on the run.
“Our client, however, remains undeterred by the desperate efforts of some individuals to intimidate him and bend his will and rights against the constitution provisions, framework of Nigeria Police Force Act and the laws of the land.
“The circumscription of his constitutional right to the dignity of self, freedom of expression and fair hearing denotes that there is a desperate attempt to scare him into submission.
“We have advised Prince Afegbua of his right and remedies available to him, as a law abiding citizen of NIgeria, he has elected to make himself available to the Police on Wednesday once he returns from his trip,” the statement said.
JUICYLINKS earlier reported that the media adviser to former head of state, Ibrahim Babangida, Kassim Afegbua, has absolved himself of any wrongdoing, after being declared wanted by the police as reported by Premium Times.
Afegbua stated that he was prepared to fight his case in court; however, he stated that he would turn himself in to the authorities by Wednesday, February 7.