Ebonyi petitions Police over inciting social media posts by Umahi’s ex-aide

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Uba Group

BY AGNES NWORIE, ABAKALIKI

The Ebonyi State Government has petitioned the Police in the state over the alleged inciting posts by Godffery Chikwere, a radio presenter and former Media Aide to Governor David Umahi.

The Commissioner for Information in the state, Uchenna Orji, made the disclosure at a press conference in Abakaliki, the state capital, on Monday.

Orji said, “Godffery Chikwere made posts on his social media pages which amount to cybercrime contrary to the state’s Cybercrime Prohibition Law 012, 2021.”

The Commissioner also claimed that Chikwere made spurious allegation in one of his posts that “it is clear that the Nigeria Army is … seriously loosing respect from the public.’’

He described the allegation against the Army as a fake report being categorized as hate speech, and stressed that the post by Chikwere was capable of discrediting the Force.

He said that the former media aid alleged the politicians of killing the youths by using some of them as springboard to ascend to power unjustly.

“My attention has been drawn to social media posts and speculation that the office of the Commissioner for Information and State Orientation, Ebonyi State, caused the arrest and detention of a journalist in Ebonyi State.

“I want to use this opportunity and medium to categorically state that the person being referred to, Godffery Chikwere, is not a journalist known to Ebonyi State. I had to confirm from the NUJ and they clearly stated that he was not a journalist.

“The Ministry of Information, in keeping with its mandate of ensuring orientation of the people against all forms of bad habits, and also in keeping with its duty of sensitizing the people and ensuring the implementation of the law made, the Ebonyi State law on Cybercrime Prohibition 2021 which is law 012 of 2021, we had to swing into action in ensuring that we track all persons spreading fake news either through publications or how-so-ever.

“Incidentally, this Godffery Chikwere happens to be one of those whom we found to be in the habit of posting fake information and spreading hate speech.

“Let me mention that we have had two cases where people seen to be circulating fake information were arrested and quizzed. We have a case of the PA of a Vice-Chancellor who was arrested, quizzed and was charged to court. So, the case of Godffery Chikwere cannot be treated exceptionally or separately.

“I want to enjoin members of the public to join us on the crusade against fake news and hate speech,” he said.

Chikwere, popularly known as ‘Baby Mouth,’ was arrested by the Police few days ago, following the petition against him by the government.

He was said to have been hospitalised at the Alex Ekwueme Federal University Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki when he reportedly fell sick in the Police custody.

When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, Ebonyi Command, DSP Loveth Odah, said that she was not aware that Chikwere was hospitalised.