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Ogoni Day Celebration: Fegalo Nsuke Discloses Reasons For His Detention.

Vannessa Eddie




The annual Ogoni Day celebration may have come and gone but the experiences of the key players in the matters of Ogoniland have left so many stakeholders wondering if the goal to achieve a lasting peace and freedom in Ogoniland is actually possible, especially with what is happening between the two factions of MOSOP as well as their presidents.

One of the factional presidents, Mr Fegalo Nsuke who was arrested and detained two days to the Ogoni day celebration only to be released by 7 pm on 4th of January when the celebration was over told Crystal Express that the intention of those behind his arrest and detention was probably to ensure he never participated in the celebration.

He also narrated how he was treated like a common criminal as well as how he responded to the petitions against him which he described as ridden with lies.

“It was Thursday, January 2, 2020, at about 2.30pm, I had met with the Divisional Police Officer in charge of Bori Division, and later with the Area Command in Bori. I needed to brief them on the planned Ogoni Day activities and assure them the event will be peaceful as usual.

“Thereafter, I left for Port Harcourt. At the Police Check Point at Akpajo, Eleme Local Government Area, we suddenly heard several gun shots. Some indecently dressed Police officers came to my car and forced me out. In that terribly confused state, I introduced myself and that earned me heavy punches in my face. Immediately, I was handcuffed,” he informed.

Mr. Nsuke said he was pushed into another car, a Toyota Camry and was handcuffed to his back by the same officer, adding that he was only told “you stubborn trouble maker, we were supposed to shoot you,” by one of the police men when he pleaded with them to relax the painful handcuffs a bit.

Still narrating his ordeal, he said he was in company of two boys from his community, Monday Barigbon and Dumlebabari Doode who were taken in his car as all of them were driven to Port-Harcourt by the men in uniform.

“On our way, some five minutes later, calls started coming into my phone. My captors then realized that the Ogoni people have become aware of my abduction.

They drove down to their office near Choba, Port Harcourt. It was the office of the Inspector General of Police, Special Tactical Squad where I was detained till the following morning without food. My right hand was handcuffed to the burglary proof of one of the windows until morning and so, there was no way I could sleep”, he explained in dismay.

“Early Friday morning, at about 8am, one of the Police officers came to me to come get some food. My two hands were now handcuffed. We both went outside and I was put into the same Toyota Camry, taken to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, Rukpokwu, Port Harcourt.

“There I was striped and left in boxer shorts. I was put into the cell with a large number of detainees.

“Later that day (Friday, January 3, 2020) I was taken from Rukpokwu and moved to another detention center in Borikiri, Port Harcourt. In Borikiri, I was put into a dark cell without lights and ventilation. I understand the Borikiri facility had been built for armed robbers. The journey from SARS, Rukpokwu to Borikiri was painful and traumatic. I was taken without cloths and thrown into a very cold air conditioned vehicle. I had only my boxer shorts on me. We arrived Borikiri like condemned criminals with no value.

“An interesting conversation ensued with the Police officers as we drove to Borikiri. One of them asked if I knew Senator Barry Mpigi, Yes, I replied. Do you have issues with him, he asked. I don’t have problems with anybody, I responded. You must die in detention, he then told me.

“On arrival at the Borikiri IGP Unit, I and the two Ogoni youths detained with me were placed in three different cells and the officers were instructed not to allow anyone gain access to us. I slept on the bare floor and when I needed to urinate, it has to be in a bottle. It was a real torture chamber. I was left there that night on bare floor until the following day when the IPO, Inspector Victor of the IGP Special Tactical Squad and two others arrived. .They moved me in handcuffs back to the IGP Tactical Squad office near Choba. This time, I was allowed to wear my cloths before I was taken out. The other two arrested with me were left in Borikiri, and brought much later.

“On getting to the office of the IGP Special tactical squad, I was put in leg-cuffs and locked up in the detention chamber.

“When the commander arrived, he ordered the leg-cuffs be removed. He later called me into his office and the handcuffs were also taken off. There he informed me that I will be bailed and my bail bond will be signed by Senator Barry Mpigi. I was later to learn that the instruction was that the person who arrested me should be the one to bail me.

“Senator Mpigi did not turn up. He sent one Barr. Gwezia who signed the bail bond along with my friend, Mr. Success Kpobari Penu, who was on standby to sign the bail bond should Mpigi fail to show up.”, he said.

On why he was he was arrested, he noted that it was a connivance between Saro-Wiwa’s enemies struggling to diminish his sacrifices and those of thousands of other Ogoni who paid the supreme sacrifice for Ogoni freedom, adding that he cannot be intimidated because the struggle he stands for is just.

“This narrative will be incomplete without touching on what I was accused of. Shortly after we arrived the IGP office, the IPO called my attention to an order from an Abuja Court and signed by a high ranking Police officer. I asked for the substantive suit and questioned why a court will give an order without a substantive suit and signed by a Police officer. I also noticed that the so-called order did not indicate the parties to the suit nor did it have the seal of a judge or magistrate.

“The IPO asked me to only respond to the petition which had been written by Legborsi Pyagbara though not signed by him. I knew this was a gang-up, a frame up by haters of MOSOP and our struggle to get me incarcerated ahead of the Ogoni Day. I was to address on the 4th of January. The petition stated that I invaded the MOSOP Secretariat in Bori on January 7, 2019 and in August 2019, I burnt down Legborsi Pyagbara’s house in Nyokuru, Khana Local Government Area.

“I told them I was at the MOSOP secretariat because I won the MOSOP election held December 19, 2018 and not that I just woke up to claim the residency of MOSOP,” Nsuke maintained.

He however expressed shock that the people who are supposed to be looked up to as custodians of social values and those who should maintain high standards could become helplessly and miserably ridiculous simply for personal gains.

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