FRONT PAGE EDITORIAL: Mgbilimgba, Soludo and Anambra’s image


By Tony Okafor

ON Tuesday, a horrible video appeared on the social media, showing alleged anti-touting officials manhandling one Mgbilimgba, a known APGA enthusiast and revenue contractor, before now.

THEvictim repeatedly begged for leniency from his assailants to no avail.

HE even told his bushwhackers that his wife was pregnant, but that could not save him as his assaulters repeatedly hit him with a pestle on his ankle and other bony parts of his body, including his shoulders and chest and did a video of him while he was rolling on the ground helplessly screaming and begging them to allow him to explain himself — a repeated appeal they didn’t give any attention to.

HIS assailants rather accused him of revenue racketeering , stating that his brother was collecting certain illegal fees at the Niger Street, Onitsha, which they said were being remitted to him( Mgbilimgba)

WHILE not defending the accused( Mgbilimgba), it is pertinent to condemn the action of his assailants and their methodology.

SAY it anywhere, trial by ordeal is a primitive method of determining a person’s guilt or innocence . It has no place in a 21st century.

ANAMBRA State is a grade one state by every measure and ramification.

MORE, Anambra State under Prof Chukwuma Soludo is a cynosure. The whole world looks onto Anambra State for everything excellent in this dispensation.

THE Mgbilimgba case is a minus to the state’s credentials, to say the least.

PRESUMPTION of innocence is explicitly recognized and entrenched in section 36(5) of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria( As amended) which the leaders of the country, including the governor of Anambra State, Prof Chukwuma Soludo, swore to protect and defend.

ASSUMING, without conceding that Mgbilimgba was guilty of the alleged offence, the standard approach in the circumstances was to hand him over to the police for prosecution and not resorting to self help as seen on the trending video.

WE therefore call on Prof Soludo to rise to the occasion by causing the Mgbilimgba assailants to be made public and face the law accordingly.

THIS will not only serve as a deterrent to others, it will go a long way to portray the image of Anambra State, under the leadership of a first class professor, as truly the light of the nation and centre of excellence where sages like the late Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe, Dr Alex Ekwueme, Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegeu Ojukwu, Chinua Achebe, Chuba Okadigbo, Nwafor-Orizu, Pius Okigbo, Prof Dora Akunyili,to mention but a few, cultured the system.

THERE is no need recounting similar infractions that had happened under the current administration in the state, including the burning of goods of some street traders by some overzealous government officials enforcing a clean and smart mega city agender of the Soludo government, because a single justice seen done is like a signpost.
The Mgbilimgba case is a litmus test.

By Ifeizu Joe

Ifeizu is a seasoned journalist and Managing Editor of TheRazor. He has wide knowledge of Anambra State and has reported the state objectively for over a decade.

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