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Sowore should prove that his attacks on Okiro are not linked to his role in his rape case

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Without sounding patronizing, Nigeria boasts of efficient and responsible press that could have promptly reported the appointment of Emmanuel Ibe, if it was in breach of the Constitution as SaharaReporters had alleged. 

The press would have equally reported the so-called fraud allegation against Ibe, if it was true. On December 23, 2015, national dailies like THISDAY newspaper has this to say about Ibe’s appointment:-

“Meanwhile the commission approved the appointment of Emmanuel Ibe as acting Secretary to the commission. 

“Ibe, until his appointment, was the Director of Administration and Finance. He was the Special Assistant to the former Chairman of the commission, and presently the Chairman of the Nigerian of Institute of Management (NIM), Abuja. 

“Ibe is a fellow of the NIM (chartered) and also a member of the Institute of Directors (IoD), Nigeria and the United Kingdom”. 

On the other hand, the lightning speed at which social media report events in the country, is such that if the so-called appointment of Ibe as the Secretary of the Commission, by Okiro, violated the constitution, investigative online outfits like PremiumTimes, would have reported it before Sowore’s report.

Suffice it to say that this is how PremiumTimes reported Ibe’s appointment in December 22, 2015:

“The Police Service Commission has approved the promotion of 986 senior police officers and has appointed Emmanuel Ibe as its acting secretary.

“This is contained in a statement issued by commission’s spokesman, Ikechukwu Ani, in Abuja on Tuesday.

“Mr. Ibe was the Director of Administration and Finance and Special Assistant to the former chairman of the commission.”

In reacting to what right thinking Nigerians have come to see as cocktail of lies, dished and served by Omoyele Sowore, through his usual medium, SaharaReporters, the PSC debunked the allegations Sowore leveled against the Chairman of the Commission, Sir Mike Okiro [above], on the deployment of Emmanuel Ibe to oversee the office of the Secretary of the Commission, pending the appointment of a substantive Secretary by the President and the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari.

In a nutshell, here is extract of the response to by PSC, signed by its spokesman, Ikechukwu Ani:

“The Commission wishes to state that its Hon. Chairman, Sir (Dr) Mike Mbama Okiro, a retired Inspector General of Police did not at any time appoint anybody Secretary to the Commission.”

The response further stated that the appointment of the said Mr. Emmanuel Ibe as Secretary was in an acting capacity, following the vacuum created by the deployment of the Commission’s former Secretary, Mallam Aliyu Bisala to the Ministry of Trade and Investment.

“It is instructive to note that Mr. Ibe was appointed in acting capacity pending whenever Mr. President appoints a substantive Secretary or confirms his appointment. The appointment was also done so that the activities/programmes of the Commission would not unnecessarily be hampered by the vacuum.”

On the Constitutionality of Ibe’s appointment, the report added: “The appointment of Mr. Ibe has not violated the Constitution of Nigeria as the Commission in Plenary has the powers to appoint an Acting Secretary which does not in any way infringe on the powers of Mr. President to appoint a substantive Secretary for the Commission at any time.” 

Mr. Emmanuel Ibe was allegedly a target of a petition to EFCC on selling of Police appointments for cash and masterminding a phony land deal. He, according to the statement was tried by a competent court of justice that dutifully acquitted and discharged him.‎

A critical review of Sowore’s desperate attack on the person of the Chairman of PSC, Sir Mike Okiro in his commissioned attempt at running down Emmanuel Ibe, revealed a hidden fact that suggested that his base attack is beyond ordinary in the first place. 

This writer, and indeed, other rational Nigerians find it difficult to reconcile this extract in Sowore’s report, with facts about PSC:

“Even though Mr. Amosu’s report was published more than three years ago, no action was ever taken against Mr. Ibe. 

“The petition lamented that Parry Osayande, a member of the PSC, was suspended after he exposed details of the land fraud deal. 

“Meanwhile, Mr. Okiro saw it that Mr. Ibe was reinstated and promoted”.

At no time in the history of PSC was Parry Osayande, who took over from Chief Simon Okeke as the Chairman of the Commission, was suspended, unless, Sowore was referring to another Osayande in the Commission. It is on record that Parry Osayande served out his term as the Chairman of PSC.

The so-called fraud allegations against the person of Mr. Emmanuel Ibe, took place before Sir Mike Okiro was even appointed as the Chairman of the Commission. It was precisely on May 8, 2013; Okiro became the boss of PSC and the said allegation against Ibe, emanated in 2011. 

Unless the fellow who commissioned Sowore in this enterprise, hid information about these dates from him, he should have known that Sir Okiro has no such power to influence the course of law and justice as he alleged in his report, while Mr. Emmanuel Ibe’s case was in Court of competent jurisdiction. In this regard, he, Okiro, had no choice than to ensure that Mr. Ibe was reinstated to his position, if the Court directed so.

Apart from the fact that Sowore is not a trained investigative journalist, who knows the importance of crosschecking every bite of information he receives from his clients, one had expected that being a graduate of a University in Nigeria, he should have the patience to investigate the story of Mr. Emmanuel Ibe before coming out with his story. 

Without going far, only one factor could be responsible for his attack on Sir Mike Okiro. For daring to arrest and prosecute him for raping of a female student in University of Lagos, Sowore has not forgiven Okiro. There is no other way any rational person can justify Sowore’s persistent phobia for Okiro, each and every time, he has course to write about PSC in his outfit. 

The recent information that a few years ago, the file section of Surulere Police Station got burnt by a mysterious fire incident was apparently a desperate attempt by Sowore to efface record of his rape issue. Mr Okiro had recently given graphic details of how Sowore was being prosecuted for rape and this was when he got his US visa and left the country.

There is no doubt that the dramatic manner Sowore jetted out of Nigeria after his tales by moonlight of been attacked and injected with poison by cultists, lends credence to the fact that he fled to avoid justice. 

Even he, Sowore has not replied a prominent human rights lawyer’s inquiry about his current health condition, to which the lawyer borrowed him money for treatment abroad, after telling the story of lead poising. Identity theft is another problem stalking him badly. Report has it that Sowore who claims to be from Yoruba ethnicity is actually an Ijaw man from a polygamous family of over 12 children.

Based on the plethora of facts about Sowore’s ugly past, coupled with this apparent identity theft of claiming what he is not, how can he convince Nigerians that his Okiro phobia is not a function of the role he, Okiro played in bringing him to justice? Sowore, the ball is in your court.

Emeka Oraetoka, Information Management Expert & Researcher, wrote in from Garki-Abuja; e-mail:oramekllis@lycos.com


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