A REJOINDER TO THE MANIFEST FALSEHOOD/FALLACIOUS CLAIMS BY MR. PETER AFUNANYA, SPOKESPERSON OF THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE SERVICES (DSS) HEADQUARTERS, ABUJA:

A REJOINDER TO THE MANIFEST FALSEHOOD/FALLACIOUS CLAIMS BY MR. PETER AFUNANYA, SPOKESPERSON OF THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE SERVICES (DSS) HEADQUARTERS, ABUJA:

THE DSS IS EXPERT IN ENFORCEMENT OF FORCEFUL DISAPPEARANCE OF INNOCENT CITIZENS. AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL IS IMPECCABLY CORRECT, AND DESERVES AN APOLOGY FROM THE DSS.

For the purpose of this piece, it is imperative that we have the background knowledge of the meaning of enforced disappearance and how it is classified as a crime against humanity.

BACKGROUND:

ENFORCED DISAPPEARANCE :
Definition: An enforced disappearance is the secret abduction or imprisonment of a person by a State or Political organization, or by a third party with the authorization, support or acquiescence of a state or political organization, followed by a refusal to acknowledge the person’s fate and whereabout with the intent of placing the victim outside the protection of the Law.

INTERNATIONAL CONVENTION ON ENFORCED DISAPPEARANCE:

The International Convention for the protection of all persons from enforced disappearance (ICPED) is an International human rights instrument by the United Nations intended to prevent forced disappearance which as defined in International Law, is part of Crime against humanity.
This convention was adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution 47/133 and came into force on 23rd December, 2010.
Nigeria is a State party to the International Convention for the protection of all persons from enforced disappearance.

Is the State Security Service conscious of this convention in the discharge of its statutory mandates? The answer is capital NO!

My attention has been drawn to the press statement credited to the DSS National spokesperson– Mr. Peter Afunanya, in relation to this subject.

I initially treated the obvious misinformation from the DSS, emanating from their spokesperson as part of social media contrives until I watched the video clip last night. A careful look at Mr. Afunanya’s facial expression as he was busy vainly trying to distort facts, depicts that of a drowning man struggling to survive, and strenuously conjecturing blatant lies to defend the uncivil activities of a supposed democratic institution like the DSS.

If one may ask – if the operatives of the DSS’ style of operation is not by enforcing forceful disappearance/kidnapping and abduction of innocent citizens at the wee hours of the night, what other style permissible under the law have they been adopting in their operations? Maybe, Mr. Afunanya will throw more light on this.

May I remind Mr. Afunanya that my office has countless number of Judgement and Orders from Courts of competent jurisdiction, compelling the DSS to produce those they abducted at the wee hours of the night, and release them unconditionally. The list is endless.

Mr. Afunanya should recall that on the 6th day of June, 2021, the operatives of the DSS led a bloody onslaught in my peaceful home in Oraifite, and during that murderous assault on my peaceful home, the invaders gruesomely murdered my personal assistant, dumped his lifeless body inside the boot of my car, zoomed off with his corpse, which they later set ablaze inside my car around Neni town, in Anambra state.
What a crime against humanity!
Can this dastardly act be defended under any law, Mr. Afunanya?

During the same unprovoked murderous attack on my peaceful home, three of my domestic staff were abducted by the soulless operatives of the DSS in conjunction with their criminal counterparts in security uniforms. These persons namely, (1) Mr. Felix Okonkwo (Driver), (2) Mr. Okafor Lawrence Ugochukwu (Gardener), and (3) Ikenna Chibuike (Steward) are still being held in the detention facility of the DSS here in Abuja, since the 6th day of June, 2021 to date. The same office from where Mr. Afunanya is shamelessly dishing out falsehood. What other term could be used to describe this type of operation, if not forceful kidnapping and enforced disappearance of innocent Nigerian Citizens?

More worrisome is that after being served with Judgement/Order of Court of competent jurisdiction, directing for the immediate release of the three domestic staff abducted from my residence, the DSS is still manifestly in contempt of the Court Judgement/Orders.
Or can it be said that Mr. Afunanya is disputing the findings of fact and judgement of the learned trial judge in Re: Mr. Ifeanyi Ejiofor Vs Nigeria Police Force & Ors . Suit No: FHC/AWK/CS/56/2021, which found the operatives of the State Security Service liable for the bloody invasion of my peaceful home, murder of my PA and abduction of my three domestic staff? A copy of the certified true copy of the aforesaid judgement was duly served on the State Security Sevice.

It is disheartening to note that in this 21st century, the DSS is treating with greatest contempt , the Orders of Courts of competent jurisdiction served on them. Should the public not be aware, may they be properly guided today.

The DSS has by their very modus operandi, constituted themselves into a law, even under a democratic government. Otherwise, how can one explain that over ten pronouncements and directives of the Federal High Court Abuja, coram Nyako J., affecting the management and welfare of our indefatigable client – Onyendu Mazi Nnamdi Kanu were all flouted with impunity by the DSS.

The most troubling part is the specific Orders of the Court requiring admittance of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s personal physician for an independent medical opinion on his health status, but till date, the DSS continues to flout this Order of Court with impunity. The list is endless!

The brief list of the names of those still in the DSS custody will be provided hereunder. These are persons who the DSS variously enforced their disappearances at the wee hours of the night without any Court Order, and any time we succeeded in securing Order from court granting them bail, the DSS will quickly rush back to the Federal High Court to obtain their own Order to legitimize their illegal act. This is applicable to those the DSS managed to have admitted being in their custody. Whilst we still have innocent citizens in their numbers still languishing in the DSS custody, even with verifiable evidence to show that they are being detained in the DSS custody, all kidnapped at ungodly hours of the night, which the DSS is stoutly denying being in their custody.

As a matter of fact, the DSS is the last security outfit that will ever contemplate granting access to lawyers and relatives to visit their clients/loved ones held in their custody, even when there are subsisting Court Orders to that effect.

Nigerians should be bold enough to demand from Mr. Afunanya the whereabouts of the underlisted civilians whose enforced disappearances were carried out by DSS. It is to be noted that no one has ever seen these persons since the day they were abducted, even we, their Lawyers and their relatives have been bluntly denied access to them by DSS. Our team of lawyers have separately commenced Fundamental Rights enforcement actions on their behalf and till date, we are yet to set our eyes on them, including some of them judgment has been obtained on their behalf, directing for their unconditional release. Yet, the DSS is yet to comply. They are as follows:

Jude Chuks Obasi- abducted and enforced disappearance since 31st March, 2021.(Judgment already entered for his unconditional release, but till date, Mr. Afunanya and his office are yet to comply with this Court Judgement).

Chidiebere Echefu – abducted and enforced disappearance on 8th November, 2021 (Judgment already entered for his unconditional release, but till date, Mr. Afunanya and his office are yet to comply with this Court Judgement).

Godwin, Joy Idara – abducted and enforced disappearance since 8th November, 2021.

Ikechukwu Henry – abducted and enforced disappearance on 23rd August, 2021.

Mr. Ifedi Sunday and Mrs. Ifedi Calista (Husband and Wife) – abducted and enforced their disappearance on 15th November, 2021.

Solomon Onyegbulam- abducted and enforced disappearance since 8th March, 2021.

Ezike Wisdom Nwambam – abducted and enforced disappearance on 26th June, 2021.

Kenneth Ojima – abducted and enforced disappearance on 26th June, 2021.

Onyeibe Chinonso – abducted and enforced disappearance on 26th June, 2021.

Igwe Johnson, Abducted and enforced disappearance on 26th June, 2021.

Okezie Fortune – abducted and enforced disappearance on 26th June, 2021.

David Ogbonnaya – abducted and enforced disappearance on 26th June, 2021.

Chinedu Nwaoba – abducted and enforced disappearance on 26th June, 2021.

Aja Joseph – abducted and enforced disappearance on 26th June, 2021.

Barrister Awoke – abducted and enforced disappearance on 26th June 2021.

Kingsley Chima – abducted and enforced disappearance on 26th February 2021.

Emeka Ngonadi – abducted and enforced disappearance on 10th April 2021.

Ukpai Michael – abducted and enforced disappearance on 20th May, 2021.

Ibeleme Tochukwu – abducted and enforced disappearance on 15th June, 2021.

Chinaedu Ejesu – abducted and enforced disappearance in November 2021. Etc.
The list is endless.
Mr. Afunanya is therefore, implored to advise his office to first purge themselves of the contempt of plethora of Court Orders hanging on their necks, before going public to further expose their office to ridicule.

Many thanks to Amnesty International for calling a spade by its very name without minding whose ox is gored.

It is our respectful observation, that by the time this current Administration is over, they will be celebrated as the award winning/famous administration under whose tenure and watch, rules of law were brazenly violated, and relegated to the background. Also, under whose watch there is an outrageous record of human rights violations.

There are stunning records of extra judicial killings of innocent citizens being abducted by overzealous security agents and murdered at the wee hours of the night.
Under the infamous tenure of the disgraced, and suspended DCP Abbah Kyari, over hundred innocent Igbo youths arrested from various states across the southeast were murdered in custody. We have direct eyewitness accounts to this, and in the fullness of time, the International Criminal Court will have a date with the perpetrators of these crimes against humanity.

Thank you all and God bless.

Signed:
Sir Ifeanyi Ejiofor, Esq. (KSC)
IPOB’s Lead Counsel.
2nd September, 2022.

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Simon Ekpa

Simon Ekpa LL.M (Master of Laws) is a human rights activist, CEO, senior legal advisor at Ekpa & Co Oy, legal researcher, author, analyst, Finnish politician, Biafra agitator and a Finnish Military reserve.
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