For immediate release
August 20, 2023
*COPDEM Condemns arrest of Political Activist Chigozie, demands his immediate release*
Coalition for the Protection of Democracy (COPDEM) has condemned the arrest of Mr Chigozie Ifeanyichukwu who is the Convener of “UpNorth Ambassadors for Peter Obi’ by security agents in Abuja.
In a statement signed by the Spokesman of COPDEM, Danjuma Garba, the frontline democracy campaign organisation said Chigozie was arrested on Sunday afternoon by a combined team of Police and Army at Area 1 Round About, Garki.
COPDEM criticised the security agencies for unlawfully arresting peaceful protesters simply expressing their democratic rights to freedom of expression and association.
“Nigeria is under a democratic government where the right to express divergent views is guaranteed in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria”, the group stated.
The statement reads, “We observe with concern the arrest of one of our members, Chigozie Ifeanyichukwu who is also the Convener of “UpNorth Ambassadors for Peter Obi’ by a combined team of Police and the Army in Abuja on Sunday afternoon at Area One Round About Garki in Abuja.
“Chigozie who is also a member of COPDEM has every democratic right to express his dissatisfaction on any issue of national interest without intimidation, but we are dismayed to learn that Chigozie was arrested on Sunday afternoon while trying to express his democratic rights which is enshrined in the constitution.
“We hereby demand the immediate release of Chigozie by the security agencies responsible and involved in his arrest.
“We are also learning that some citizens who want to express their civic rights at City Gate in Abuja were dispersed by security agents stationed at the area, with some of the protesters sustaining severe injuries.
“This situation is against democratic tenets all over the world and we are cautioning the security agencies to embrace the rule of law in their day-to-day activities.”