A Yoruba sociocultural youth group, Yoruba Youths Collective Solidarity Movement, YOCOSOM, has announced their preparations to drag the incumbent governor of Imo state, His Excellency Governor Hope Uzodinma, to the International Criminal Court for allegedly harbouring the principal suspect in the attack against the CUPP spokesperson, Ikenga Imo Ugochinyere.
It will be recalled that on January 14, some armed hoodlums known as unknown gunmen attacked the country home of Mr Ikenga Ugochinyere, burnt his house and many vehicles in the premises and killed three people.
YOCOSOM believes that the attackers were not unknown gunmen but sponsored thugs allegedly employed by an aide to Governor Hope Uzodinma by the Chinasa Nwaneri who is said to be a Special Assistant to the governor on special duties.
Mr Nwaneri’s threat calls to the CUPP spokesperson prior to the January 14 attack has gone viral and fingers are being pointed at him as the most likely mastermind of the deadly attack. Few days after Mr Ugochinyere was attacked, the house of the Ideato North Local Government Area of Imo state, Christopher Ohizu, was also attacked with his house burnt and he was later gruesomely murdered.
Here is the full text of the Press Release by YOCOSOM
Being the text of a
THE YORUBA YOUTHS COLLECTIVE SOLIDARITY MOVEMENT (YOCOSOM)
… Yoruba development agenda
January 25, 2023 in Lagos, Nigeria.
THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY MUST IMPOSE A VISA BAN ON GOVERNOR HOPE UZODINMA FOR HARBORING AN ARSON AND MURDER SUSPECT
First, YOCOSOM commiserates with the Coalition of United Political Parties, CUPP, on the unfortunate attack on the home of its Spokesperson, Barrister Ikenga Imo Ugochinyere, which led to the death of his friends, relatives and destruction of multimillion Naira worth of property on Saturday January 14 this year by hoodlums suspected to be state-sponsored as has been severally alleged by public affairs analysts and close observers of Nigeria’s politics.
YOCOSOM totally condemns such clearly politically motivated bloodshed. It is worrisome that a few days after the threats against Barrister Ikenga by one Chinasa Nwaneri went viral, the attack happened to confirm what the latter had threatened would happen.
We know there is the problem of the so-called unknown gunmen in Imo state, but this violent attack has so much to do with the man who had earlier threatened to deal ruthlessly with Barrister Ikenga Ugochinyere.
This same man works directly with the incumbent state governor, Mr Hope Nzodinma. The governor himself came out to make some ridiculous comments about the bloody attack that it was Ikenga’s allies who burnt his house, cars and killed three people including his uncle. The governor acted like a drunk fool in that interview.
We join other Nigerians to state that the number one suspect in the arson and murders that took place at Barrister Ikenga’s country home on January 14 is Mr Chinasa Nwaneri who is a special assistant to the governor of Imo state.
We are aware that as a sitting governor, Mr Hope Nzodinma has constitutional immunity in Nigeria but he doesn’t have international immunity. To this extent, we are calling on the diplomatic community in Nigeria that, being a direct threat to democracy and rule of law in Nigeria, all European and American countries are hereby appealed to to ensure a total Visa ban on Mr Hope Nzodinma, his family members and all members of his entourage serving in his government until he releases Mr Chinasa Nwaneri to the Police for proper investigation and necessary prosecution if found guilty.
Threat to life is a criminal offence particularly when the threat has been executed. The security agencies, especially the Police and DSS must get Chinasa Nwaneri arrested and investigated because he is the only suspect in this matter.
We will take this further beyond this Press Release in the coming days as we will collaborate with some Civil Society Organizations to submit official petitions against Governor Hope Uzodinma to the various European and American embassies in addition to petitioning against him at the International Criminal Court.
We stand firmly in solidarity with the CUPP and its spokesperson in this terrible incident in demanding for quick justice on the crime.
Comrade Peter Oyewole,
Director of Contact and Mobilization, YOCOSOM.
January 25, 2023, Badagry, Lagos.