A former national chairman of the All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, Victor Umeh, who was arrested Wednesday by the State Security Service, has been released.
Mr. Umeh was arrested at his Aguluzigbo country home in Anambra State and taken to Abuja reportedly for questioning over his alleged sponsorship of the pro-Biafra group, Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
He was released Friday morning, the party’s deputy secretary, Jerry Obasi, confirmed.
Mr. Obasi however said the arrest was politically motivated by Mr. Umeh’s opponents in the forthcoming Anambra Central Senatorial re-run election.
While describing the arrest as “obnoxious and despicable”, Mr. Obasi expressed regret that the SSS had become a willing tool in the hands of politicians who use the service to intimidate political opponents.
”We condemn in strongest terms the unlawful harassment and intimidation of Chief Sir Victor Umeh, our former National Chairman who was whisked away from his house at the earliest hour of yesterday in what seemed like a commando and gang arrangements by the DSS.
“It is quite unfortunate that Nigerians, especially political stalwarts of other political parties are now branded names using government agencies like the DSS to intimidate opponents with a view to either stopping them from running for elections or to clamp down on their chances politically especially those whose chances of winning elections are obvious just as in the circumstances which Chief Umeh was arrested,” he said.
“It is quite absurd and alarming that the DSS deliberately whisked Chief Umeh away in a rickety van thereby bringing his personality to odium.
“The most disappointing of them all is the obvious fact that these black movies are being acted under the watchful eye of President Muhammadu Buhari. It is sad that security agencies under the present administration are willing tools in the hands of the highest bidder rather than concentrating on their constitutional duty of maintaining law and order.
“Democracy should be civilized and not militarized unless in the circumstances where we are heading towards a police state and anarchy.”