The wife of a 38-year-old man detained since January by the Federal Special Anti-robbery Squad for alleged involvement in a robbery at a property belonging to the Acting Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, has asked the federal government and Nigerians to help ensure the release of her husband.
The woman, Charity David, spoke in an interview with PREMIUM TIMES, after this newspaper reported that the police neglected court hearings regarding the detention of her husband, Inalegwu Ochife.
Mr Ochife was arrested along with others for his alleged offence last December.
The police alleged he was involved a robbery at a property owned by the Mr Magu.
Despite a court order for the release and compensation of Mr Ochife in October, his family said the man has yet to be set free from the SARS detention facility.
A previous directive for the bail of Mr Ochife by an Abuja Division of the Federal High Court was also ignored by the police.
Mr Ochife and his co-accused have not been arraigned in court for the alleged offence.
He was paraded with the other suspects in April.
In a telephone interview with PREMIUM TIMES, Ms David accused the police officers of taking N1,000 from her every time she goes to see her husband.
“Each time I come to see my husband, they will ask me to pay N1, 000,” she said.
“About three months ago, when I came to the station and would not leave until I have been allowed to see my husband, a police officer had me locked up for over four hours.
“He accused me of giving a battery to my husband from my phone,” Ms David told PREMIUM TIMES.
According to the woman, her husband was badly beaten the day he was arrested and the police officers tortured him to confess to the alleged crime.
“My husband was arrested on January, 30. A boy, who worked with him, came home and told me. I quickly called his line. I found that it was ringing, but there was no response, so I called his mother and asked that we go to see him at the station.
“When we arrived at the station, we were told to return the following day. When we came back, I saw that my husband’s body was swollen. He had been badly beaten up and he told me that they were threatening him to confess to the crime.
“My husband is a hardworking man. He takes care of our home. Since his arrest, it’s been very difficult. We live at the mercy of neighbours and friends,” Mrs David told PREMIUM TIMES.
This newspaper made several attempts to contact the Force Public Relations Officer, Jimoh Moshood, to respond to Ms David’s allegations.
After repeated calls and messages on Wednesday morning, Mr Moshood promised to revert, saying he was in a meeting.
The spokesman however ignored further calls, Wednesday evening, when PREMIUM TIMES again attempted to speak with him.