The House of Representatives has mentioned that 21-year-old Chidinma Ojukwu, the suspected killer of Super TV Chief Executive Officer, Usifo Ataga, should not die within the custody of the Nigeria Police Force.
They additionally urged the police to conduct a correct investigation into the matter and chorus from granting interviews.
The House additional known as on the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba, to make sure that there was no violation of human rights and media entry to arrested individuals sooner or later.
In addition, the House mentioned the IG should be sure that “Ms. Ojukwu (the accused) does not die in custody or commit suicide while awaiting trial as in some past cases.”
These have been the resolutions handed by the lawmakers on the plenary on Tuesday, following their unanimous adoption of a movement of pressing public significance moved by Tolu Akande-Sadipe and titled, ‘Call for the Compliance of the Police Force with the Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Proper Investigation into the Death of Late Mr. Usifo Ataga.’
Moving the movement on Tuesday, Akande-Sadipe, mentioned, “The House notes that Ms Chidinma Ojukwu, a 300-Level Mass Communication student of the University of Lagos was arrested on Wednesday, 23rd June 2021, over the murder of Chief Executive Officer, Super TV, Mr Usifo Ataga, in a service apartment in the Lekki area of Lagos State.
“The House is aware that since the arrest of Ms Chidinma Ojukwu, she has been paraded around, granting interviews to various news platforms, including the Nigerian Television Authority, on the matter, causing the internet and news media to be agog with the discussion and dissecting the matter. This is despite the fact that the police have already launched an investigation into the matter.
“The House is further aware that the law of Nigeria does not allow for social media trials and matters that are sub judice – meaning before the court or not yet judicially decided – are not to be discussed by the media.”
She added, “The House is cognisant that Section 36(5) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) provides that every person who is charged with a criminal offence shall be presumed to be innocent until they are proven guilty.
“Thus, so long as Ms. Ojukwu has not been proven guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction, she is not to be labelled a criminal or paraded about to conduct a series of interviews on a case currently under investigation. Rather, the police are to conduct a proper investigation and allow the court to consider the matter and make an informed judgment.
“The House is concerned that if Ms. Ojukwu continues to be paraded about for a social media trial, it could affect the determination and outcome of the case as well as amount to a breach of her fundamental right to fair hearing, especially where she is labelled or treated as one guilty of a crime.”
Recall that on June 24, the Lagos State Police Command paraded the suspect the place she had admitted to stabbing the 50-year-old within the neck with a knife after a disagreement.
However, in an interview that had now gone viral, the undergraduate contradicted her preliminary confession, denying her involvement in killing the Super TV CEO.
Ojukwu said that Ataga had marital issues earlier than his demise. She described the deceased as a busy man who was fast to anger.
Chidinma mentioned the person had some issues together with his spouse and advised her he was in his marriage to cater for his kids.
“He was actually a busy person but at a point, I found out that he lies a lot just to be able to have sex with young girls.
“He wasn’t having a good marriage either because I noticed he had issues with his wife. They had a marital crisis and he was there only for the kids,” she mentioned.