Lawyer manhandled by DSS petitions President Tinubu

…demands justice

Activist and lawyer, Douglas Ogbankwa, has petitioned President Bola Tinubu over his torture at Department of State Service, DSS, office in Edo State.
The Director of Strategic Communications of the African Bar Association and the Convener of Security Situation Room is demanding for justice.
Ogbankwa in an open letter to  President Tinubu, entitled: “9 Days after my Assault at the Edo State Office of SSS, Perpetrators yet to be brought to book,’ said:

‘My name is Douglas Ogbankwa. I am the Director of Strategic Communications of the African Bar Association and the Convener of Security Situation Room.
“I write this open letter with pain in my heart. Reason being that I am your staunch supporter.I did not only vote for you ,Mr President, I led an online campaign for you.
“I even was the only male that addressed your excellency during the town hall meeting at Western Homeville Hotel in Benin City,Edo State.
“What I do I get in return? I was brutally assaulted by about eight officials of the SSS, Edo State Command, together with  the Principal Staff Officer Operations Intelligence, of the State Security Services, Edo State Command in  a very unprofessional manner.
“The Incidence happened about 12:45a.m., to 11:45p.m., on September 25, 2023, at the SSS, Headquarters in Benin City, when I accompanied  my client there.
“The problem started when the said Principal Staff Officer, stopped me from accompanying client to make statements as provided for by Constitution.
“He and his boys dragged me like a common criminal, swept from ground, with a barrage of slaps and blows.
“They pushed me on the floor and said I was under arrest for being assertive.He even told his boys to throw me into the underground cell.
‘Mr. Chuck’s Arogbosi, a  Deputy Director, invited my client to the Office. I had a petition I had submitted there since April 27, 2023, that borders on threat to my life that has not been investigated.
“Your Excellency, this matter is not about me, but the vulnerable Nigerians under your watch sir.
“If such an attack can happen to lawyer, fully dressed as a lawyer with the CCTV Cameras on, what is the hope of the common man where there are no CCTV Cameras?
‘My attack is a metaphor for voiceless and souls crying for justice in this country. I can never be a second citizen in my own country.
“The fight for justice is the fight for peace, as Martin Luther King said: “Peace is not the absence of war, but the presence of justice.
“The international community is watching, Mr. President and this matter shall be an exemplar, whether we are living in a state of justice or a state of nature, where Thomas Hobbes said life was, nasty,  brutish and short.
“The attack on me was premeditated. I know there are some matters I am attending to in my professional capacity as a lawyer, where there are imminent threats,  to my life particularly from a major in the Nigerian Army, who is a godfather to the young lady creating lies and falsehoods about me with the assistance of some lawyers .
“The Major has flown in and out of Benin City severally for his plots  and he is currently serving in Kaduna.
“My Life is currently under threat. Before now, I have been terrorised by the Edo State Government.
“The then Attorney General of Edo State, did a petition against me that I was not a lawyer, a fact he knows to be false, as he is one those that appointed me into the Committee that wrote the current Edo State Criminal Code.
“He was not the one that called me to Bar. He was appointed a Member of the Council of Legal Education, recently.
“I do not consider him fit for that position as his antecedents do not sync with a person that can be in charge in making policies for the Nigerian Law School.
“Another member of the Body of Benchers did  petitions made up of false accusations against me, that I am not a lawyer.
“He knows the fact to be false as he was Chairman of the NBA Benin Branch. He is currently a lawyer to the PDP  in Edo State and that accounts for his actions.
“He is also not fit and proper to call lawyers to Bar as a Member of the Body of Benchers, due to his  antecedents.
“The NBA Benin Chairman,  and his secretary, are complicit. They wrote a very bizarre letter, on the instructions of Miss Edo -Osagie, on behalf of the NBA Benin Branch,  where he said “We hear you are not a lawyer” and in a very funny twist they wanted me to appear before them to authenticate my call to bar.
‘By the Chairman of the Benin  Bar and his secretary constituting themselves into a meniature body of benchers, they have engaged in professional misconduct.
‘They were not acting alone.They were being push by influences from outside the Bar.
“He is a Member of the Edo State Private Property Protection Committee and a Board  Member of the Edo State Public Procurement Agency.
“This leaves much to be desired for a Chairmam of the NBA Benin Branch as this is  conflict of interest I call for the Intervention of the NBA President, which this letter is copied to in this regard .The Bar must be rescued from the clutches of state domination.
“The functionality of the Bar as Institution for social engineering has been handed over to us from generation to generation.
“We will not let it die , in our time .The Market women and Bus Drivers in Benin , are now asking , “Where is the NBA?”
“The Edo State Government on the hand recently served me four years tax demands , with out the tax assessments required by the Personal Income Tax Act, PITA.
“.All these because I supported you for the Presidential Elections of 2023 and because of the upcoming, Edo, 2024 Gubernatorial Elections, holding on September 22, 2024
“My Life is no longer safe in Edo State.I have had to temporarily relocate from Edo State for my own safety.I call for the protection of Mr President,as I have no other person to cry to.
“The Attacks on me by the Edo State officers of the State Security Services  is part of coordinated Attacks on my person and my professional career.
“It is not isolated. I call for the investigation of this matter, together with my Petition dated April 27, 2023, to the Edo State Command of SSS.
“I have done a Petition to the Director General of SSS and I have not got any response I raised these issues there and I am crying to the President to save my soul.
“I believe in your Excellency ‘s penchant for due process .I know I will get Justice in all these matters .
“I am a firm believer in the Nigerian Project and I should be given a reason to feel like a Nigerian.
‘I pray to your excellency that every one involved in these matters should be brought to book .
“We pray for God’s wisdom for your Excellency to pilot the affairs of this complex country and I wish your excellency the very best . Nigeria will be great again .

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