Court remands Lagos Eze Igbo over inciting comment
The Lagos State Magistrates’ Court in Yaba, on Wednesday, ordered that the Eze Igbo of Ajao Estate, Fredrick Nwajagu, be remanded at the Ikoyi Correctional Centre.
Nwajagu was arrested last Saturday following a viral video, in which he threatened to invite members of the Indigenous People of Biafra to Lagos to secure properties of Igbo people living in the state.
The 67-year-old was arraigned on Wednesday before the magistrate court, presided over by P. E. Nwaka.
The police charged him with two counts, bordering on misconduct and intention to cause a breach of peace in Lagos State.
The four-man police prosecution team, led by the OC Legal, Yetunde Cardoso, told the court that Nwajagu committed the offence on March 26, 2023, at No 2 Akeem Shittu Street, Ajao Estate, Lagos.
“The defendant conducted himself in a manner likely to cause a breach of the peace by making inciting statements, saying that he would bring IPOB terrorist group to shut down Lagos for one month, three weeks, or three days,” the prosecution said.
According to the team, the offences contravened Sections 168 (d), 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.They prayed the court to remand the defendant in the correctional centre for 30 days pending legal advice from the Lagos State Directorate of Public Prosecutions.
However, counsel for the defendant, while moving their client’s bail application, urged the court to admit the defendant to bail in the most liberal terms.
The magistrate, who rejected the counsel’s plea, ordered the immediate remand of the defendant to the Ikoyi Correctional Centre pending legal advice from the DPP.
Nwaka adjourned the case till May 3, 2023, for DPP advice.
The PUNCH reports that Nwajagu, in a 49-second video, which went viral on Twitter, had allegedly threatened to invite IPOB members to Lagos to protect the Igbo people and their properties in the state.
In the viral video, he said, “IPOB, we will invite them. They have no job. All of the IPOB will protect all of our shops. And we have to pay them. We have to mobilise for that. We have to do that. We must have our security so that they will stop attacking us at midnight, in the morning, and in the afternoon.
“When they discover that we have our security before they will come, they will know that we have our men there. I am not saying a single word to be hidden. I am not hiding my words, let my words go viral. Igbo must get their right and get a stand in Lagos State.”
However, the Lagos Police Public Relations Officer, SP Benjamin Hundeyin, reacting to his statements, said the command would resist IPOB presence in the state.
Following the statement, the defendant was arrested by the Department of State Services on April 1, 2023, in a hotel in Ejigbo.