Police Invite Former Nigerian Governor, Deputy Over Alleged Murder, Kidnapping, Arson

The police in Imo State, South-east Nigeria, have invited a former governor of the state, Emeka Ihedioha, and the spokesperson of the Coalition of United Political Parties, Ikenga Ugochinyere, over alleged murder, kidnapping and arson cases.

The police also invited a former deputy governor of the state, Gerald Irona, who served under Mr Ihedioha’s administration.

The Commissioner of Police in Imo State, Ahmed Barde, addressed an invitation letter meant for the trio to the Chairperson of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state, Charles Ugwu.

In the letter, dated 13 March, the police commissioner asked Mr Ugwu to produce the three persons at the State Criminal Bureau on Thursday by 10 a.m.

The trio are chieftains of the PDP.

Mr Ihedioha served as the governor state with Mr Irona as the deputy from May 2019 and January 2020, when the Supreme Court nullified their election and declared Hope Uzodinma as the governor of the state.

The letter

The letter was titled: ‘Re-Case of Murder, kidnapping and Arson’ and signed by the State’s Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of administration, Ukachi Opara, on behalf of the police commissioner.

“The office of State Intelligence Bureau, Imo State Police Command, State Headquarters Owerri, is investigating the above underlined case involving some prominent members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Imo State chapter,” the letter read in part.

“The Commissioner of Police, Imo State Command, requests you come along with the following persons: Emeka Ihedioha, Ugochinyere Ikenga and Gerald Irona for interview with the commissioner of police in charge of State Intelligence Bureau (SIB) Owerri,” the letter added.

The police spokesperson in the state, Henry Okoye, confirmed to this newspaper that the letter emanated from the police in the state.

When contacted on Wednesday evening, the chairperson of the PDP in the state, Mr Ugwu, told newsmen that he had not received any letter from the police.

The PDP leader said he only saw a copy of the letter on social media.


Like other states in Nigeria’s South-east, security has deteriorated in Imo State with frequent attacks by armed persons.

Apart from killings, kidnap for ransom and attacks by suspected arsonists have also been on the increase in the state.

Several government facilities – such as offices of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) – have been targets of attacks by gunmen who set them ablaze.

Many police facilities in the state have been attacked and razed by gunmen.

The Nigerian government has accused the outlawed Indigenous people of Biafra of being responsible for the deadly attacks in the South-east, while Governor Uzodinma of Imo State has repeatedly accused members of the opposition political parties, mainly the PDP, of being carrying out the attacks in Imo to frustrate his administration.

Mr Uzodinma had, in December, threatened to name the alleged sponsors of the attacks in the state, but would later make a U-turn, two weeks after, saying he would rather leave security agencies “to do their work” and prosecute those found culpable.

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