The family of Mr Gordon Obua, erstwhile Chief Security Officer (CSO) to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, has asked operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) who arrested him since Thursday, to immediately and unconditionally release him from their custody.
The family made this known in a statement issued by its counsel, Mr Andrew Itsekiri, and obtained by the Street Journal on Monday.
Itsekiri accused the DSS of illegally detaining Obua and urged the organization to charge him to court if he did anything wrong or immediately and unconditionally release him from custody.
“We can tell the public categorically that as we write he has not been confronted with any allegation, neither was he given an opportunity to respond to any allegation before he was taken into custody.
“His ordeal began about a week preceding his eventual arrest last week Thursday when the Director-General of the SSS, Lawan Daura, sadistically on a daily basis, requested that he should report to the SSS headquarters to respond to allegations known only to Lawan Daura and, which he repeatedly failed to disclose to him despite repeated demands by the erstwhile CSO.
“On each of the 7 days preceding his arrest, he would report to the SSS headquarters at about 8am in the morning and be released to go back home at about 11pm, without being confronted with any allegation.
“At a stage, Daura requested from him if he (Lawan) should investigate the imaginary allegation or if a junior officer should, and the consistent response of the erstwhile CSO was for him to at least know the allegation, if any, to enable him respond.
“Lawan Daura never confronted him with any petition until he was taken into custody when he reported last Thursday. As we write this, nobody can access him, including family members, friends and his solicitors,” the statement said.
Similarly, an NGO, Advocacy for Societal Rights Advancement and Development Initiative (ASRADI), has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to toe the path of rule of law by ordering Obua’s immediate release.
The group’s Executive Director, Mr Adeolu Oyinlola, in a statement, demanded the immediate, unconditional release of Mr Obuah or his swift arraignment if he has done any wrong.
It said: “We also wish to place on record the Gestapo style adopted by operatives of the State Security Service who invaded the residences of the erstwhile National Security Adviser in Abuja and Sokoto.
“We demand the immediate, unconditional release of Mr Obuah or his swift arraignment if he has done any wrong. Why would the DSS be involved (directly or otherwise) in matters relating to petitions that are before election tribunals?
“ASRADI condemns in the strongest possible terms, any attempt to grant omnibus powers to the Department of State Services, DSS. For, what is the remit of the anti-graft agencies if DSS appropriates the right to investigate suspected/alleged fraud or embezzlement?’’
Itsekiri further alleged that information available to the family revealed that his client was being deprived of food, water and his medicines.
He claimed that Obua is diabetic and suffers from serious high blood pressure, and said it was clear that the motive of Lawan Daura was to either watch him die in detention and or torture him to admit to crimes he knows nothing about.
The ex-CSO’s counsel, therefore, called on Nigerians to advise Daura to release Obua immediately or charge him to a law court if there is a sustainable allegation against him.