Policemen from the Abia State Command, Thursday, abducted the Associate Editor of The Sun Newspaper, from his Surulere, Lagos home.
Ebere Wabara, who is also the Special Assistant, Media, to Orji Uzor Kalu, former Abia State Governor, was forced out of his residence in the presence of his wife and two kids, his employers said.
It was gathered that the police officers from the State Criminal Investigation Department, in Umuahia, invaded Mr. Wabara’s home between 6.30 a.m. and 7.30 a.m.
He was, first, taken to Sholoki Police Station in Aguda, Surulere, then later to Oyingbo Police Station; both in Lagos.
The officers, who reportedly identified themselves to Mr. Wabara, told him that some unnamed person had written a petition against him in Abia State.
Narrating how the abduction happened, Adanna Wabara said that her husband had gone downstairs to take something from his car.
“Shortly after, I heard him shouting, and I ran downstairs. I saw between seven and eight men, who said they were policemen,” Mrs. Wabara said.
“They said he needed to follow them to Umuahia, that there was a petition against him for sedition.
“They took us back into the house, one of them brought out an I.D Card, showing that he was a policeman. They requested to search our bedroom. They did, and collected my husband’s laptop and telephone.
“I followed as they took him to Sholoki Police Station, but later, I had to take the children to school. By the time I returned, they had moved him away. His phones could not be reached, and he had not eaten.
Mrs. Wabara said that incident has “deeply traumatized” her entire family, including their eight and six year old kids.
A statement signed by Femi Adesina, Editor-in-Chief of The Sun, condemned the abduction, likening it to the dark, heady days of military dictatorship.
“The Sun Publishing Limited sees the abduction of Mr Wabara obviously on the orders of the Abia State Commissioner of Police, Mr Adamu Ibrahim, and perhaps under the further instruction of the state governor, Chief T. A. Orji, as a throwback to the dark days of military dictatorship, when might was right, and the strong trampled on the weak,” Mr. Adesina said in the statement.
“It is unconscionable, repressive and flies in the face of all that is decent and civil. It has all the trappings of autocracy, rather than democracy.
“If Mr Wabara infringed any law, we would have expected the police to invite him to answer questions, and then charge him to court. The approach that has been adopted is Gestapo-like, and unbecoming of those who instigated it.
“Those entrusted with the upholding of the law are not expected to trample on others. This is what the policemen from Abia State have done, and it runs contrary to the code of conduct for policemen as espoused by the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Dikko Abubakar,” Mr. Adesina added.
The Sun said that when it contacted the Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, a Chief Superintendent of Police, he made efforts to resolve the matter, urging that Mr Wabara’s statement be taken in Lagos, and that he be given the opportunity to thereafter report in Umuahia.
“But apparently, the invaders from Abia had another design, obviously to keep him in detention over the weekend. It is simply despicable,” Mr. Adesina added.