Rivers state Police arrest Uniport senior Lecturer and Pharmacist, asked to pay N20,000 - NaijaTikTok || 24/7 Naija Entertainments

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Monday, 11 May 2020

Rivers state Police arrest Uniport senior Lecturer and Pharmacist, asked to pay N20,000

Residents of Port Harcourt, Rivers State yesterday expressed outrage after the police arrested and maltreated a senior lecturer at the University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT).

The lecturer, Dr. Lucky Nwidu, who is also a pharmacist, was arrested for opening his pharmaceutical shop despite the lockdown order of the state government.

The policemen arrested Nwidu, who is the director of Luckpharm Pharmacy, although he explained that he was an essential service provider.

The police arrested and dumped the pharmacist in a cell of 19 inmates but prevented him from wearing his face mask.

To secure Nwidu’s release from detention, the police forced his lawyer to pay N20,000, which has been condemned by many stakeholders.

Some concerned residents called for the arrest of and prosecution of the policemen and the DPO, while others used the opportunity to lament the state of fear and panic the police have created in the face of the lockdown to extort money from residents.

Nwidu recounted his ordeal.

He said: “I was in my house on the 8th of May 2020 preparing to deliver an online lecture when I had an uproar from the pharmacy adjacent my house. I heard a call from the nurses saying ‘Sir come to our help.’ I thought it was armed robbery attempt.

“When I got to the pharmacy, I saw two armed policemen, a lady in mufti, a policewoman, Mrs. Bukky, dragging the nurse to enter inside the  police van from Ozuoba Police Station parked in front of the pharmacy.

“I was arrested and taken away in the Oxuoba police van. A few metres away from the pharmacy the police accosted a young girl and a boy who said they  were  coming to the pharmacy to buy drugs because of acute diarrhoea and they arrested them.

“We were taken to the police station at Ozuoba. I insisted to see the DPO, CSP Ogowoke, Inspector Bukky said she had informed the DPO and he had authorised my detention that I am sabotaging the lockdown.

“I became confused as I was undressed, put inside the cell whose dimensions are 12ft by 12ft. After one hour, the DPO came to count the number in the cell; we were 19 inmates. I pleaded to go in the cell with my face mask  the police denied me.

“When my lawyer came and introduced himself, Inspector Bukky was infuriated that I called my lawyer and not my wife. My lawyer brought the permit from the Ministry of Health authorising healthcare personnel to run essential services.

“He was rebuffed by the DPO and the IPO Bukky. He was  told to bring N100,000 if not the police would send me to a quarantine centre. After much pleading from my lawyer, the IPO collected N20,000 and released me from detention.”

Reacting to Nwidu’s complaints, the state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Nnamdi Omoni, said that the Commissioner of Police, Joseph Gobun Mukan, had started investigating it.

According to him, the commissioner has invited the DPO of Ozuoba Police Station,  and Nwidu to hear from them, first hand.

He said: “The CP wishes to appeal to the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) and indeed any other professional bodies to be calm, as he is poised to deal with the matter on its merit,  no matter whose ox is gored.

“He further wishes to state unequivocally and for  the umpteenth time that he has lectured his men on the categories of persons and/ or authorities exempted from the emergency and oge of their responsibilities.”

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