Raid of Edwin Clark’s Abuja house stirs criticism

Edwin Clark

The Abuja residence of former Federal Commissioner for Information and South-South Leader, Chief Edwin was yesterday raided by Police for alleged possession of arms and ammunition.
The policemen stormed the 43, Haile Selassie Street, Asokoro, residence of the 91-year-old elder statesman at 12.30 and left at 2.30 pm, after carrying out a search of the entire house for two hours.
The Ijaw leader, who described the incident as unfortunate and moving Nigeria into a police state, however, vowed that he will not stop commenting on national issues as well as speak his mind on anything that is unjust in this country, adding that he will not relent in criticising injustice, oppression, discrimination, religious bigotry, ethnicity and anything that will affect the unity of this country, and peaceful existence of Nigeria as a country. Chief Clark, who noted that at his age, he was not afraid of anybody as nobody can do anything to him, against the backdrop that he had already obtained his boarding pass waiting for the plane to take off, however described the action of the Police as shameful, ridiculous and a serious indication that Nigeria as a country was moving towards becoming a police state.
The six policemen came in an 18-seater Toyota Hiace bus with number plate: EU 979 ABC, from the office of the Inspector-General of Police, IGP, Ibrahim Idris. They were said to be from the IGP’s ‘Special Tactical Force’ STF, Guzape, Abuja, which reports only to the IGP. But the IGP, who quickly disowned them, said those involved had been detained. According to an eye-witness, the policemen who were led by a Kolo Yusuf, said they had a search warrant obtained from the court.
It was learnt that three of the policemen, who were heavily armed, waited outside the house, while three others entered the house to effect the search.
It was gathered that the policemen on arrival, were said to have entered the building, asked for the secretary to Chief Clark, Dorothy Koko, who had gone to the bank. They were said to have insisted that they must see her and it was at this time a call was reportedly made to her to come back to the office, which she did immediately. A source said when Dorothy Koko returned, the policemen asked her to open her office which they searched and, thereafter, proceeded to her bedroom and toilet to search, even as the rooms were turned upside down. It was further learnt that as soon as the policemen finished searching her room, they proceeded to Chief Clark’s bedroom upstairs and searched his room, toilet, his wife’s room, children’s room and the sitting room, among other places. At the end of the two-hour search, the policemen were said to have left without finding anything incriminating against the elder statesman. Three of the policemen reportedly signed a document indicating that neither arms nor ammunition was found in the house of Chief Clark, while three persons from Chief Clark’s household counter-signed the document. Those who signed on behalf of Chief Clark were Ambassador Godknows Igali; Secretary-General of Pan Niger Delta Forum, PANDEF, Dr. Alfred Mulade and Mr. Mac Emakpore.

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