Monday, 3 June 2024.

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Police demand for N1.5m used in feeding monarch in detention for 3 weeks

…refuse to release him even after Governor’s order

Enugu State Command of the Nigeria Police Force has reportedly demanded a ‘refund of N1.5 million used to feed’ the detained traditional ruler of Igga community in the Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of the state, Igwe Herbert Ukuta, before his release.

The monarch has been detained at the police headquarters since May 4, 2024, on the orders of Governor Peter Mbah following a clash in his community’s farm settlement, located 15 kilometres from the town.

The violent clash occurred on Friday, 3rd May.

However, a family member told SaharaReporters that Governor Mbah had directed the police to release the monarch for over a week now.

The traditional ruler was detained after he was invited to the Enugu State Police Command over the clash that led to the killing of two policemen, a local security man and one other person by unknown assailants.

Following the killings, the police and Nigerian Army mobilised and reportedly launched a reprisal and burnt no fewer than 23 residential buildings, over 30 motorcycles, and about 15 vehicles while belongings worth millions of naira were allegedly looted by the security personnel.

SaharaReporters gathered on Monday that police personnel at the State Criminal Investigation Department told the family of the monarch they must pay N1.5 million the police claimed to have spent on his upkeep since his detention.

It was learned that Mbah told his (monarch’s) brother, Chief Maxi Ukuta, a former chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party on 31st May that he had ordered the immediate release of Igwe Ukuta from police detention three weeks after his arrest.

“However, when family members went to police headquarters in Enugu on 1st June, they were asked to pay N1.5 million to cover the expenses they incurred while the traditional ruler was in detention,” a family source told SaharaReporters.

“It is now over a week since the order was given, and Igwe Ukuta is still being detained.”

Meanwhile, it was gathered that an alleged land grabber and a Director with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) attached to Abia State, one Obinna Ayogu, had also been arrested by the police.

According to a police source, Governor Mbah ordered his arrest and the detention of the Divisional Police Officer of Adani Police Division, who is at the centre of the fracas.

The police DPO was accused of sending the slain policemen on illegal duty.

“But instead of detaining him, the police authorities in Enugu simply told him to be reporting daily, claiming that he is hypertensive,” the source said.


When SaharaReporters reached out to Chief Maxi Ukuta, he confirmed that Governor Mbah told him last week that he had ordered the release of his brother.

“Since then, we have been going to the police to secure his release but it is to no avail,” he said.

He, however, didn’t want to comment on the N1.5 million reportedly demanded by the police as refund for the money spent to feed his brother in three weeks.

Meanwhile, efforts to speak with the Command’s spokesman, DSP Daniel Ndukwe were unsuccessful as he did not take his calls.

Culled from SaharaReporters

Joe Udo
Joe Udo
Joe Udo is a creative writer and a Blogger with several years of experience.

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