UNILAG: NANS gives 24-hour ultimatum for the release of detained students

The ultimatum was issued by the President of
NANS, Chinonso Obasi, in Abuja.
Obasi condemned the action of the court
which remanded the students in Kirikiri
prisons over alleged invasion of the Office of
Television Continental in Lagos.
He threatened to relocate NANS headquarters
to the Kirikiri Maximum Prisons in solidarity
with students being held unlawfully in the
A Mobile Court had on Saturday remanded the
13 UNILAG students in Kirikiri Prisons,
pending their bail application.
The accused persons, standing trial before
Chief Magistrate P. E. Nwaka, were arraigned
on a two-count charge of unlawful invasion
and disruption of activities and have all
pleaded ‘not guilty’ to the two-count charge.
The magistrate, who ordered that the accused
be remanded in prison, adjourned the case till
April 6 for a determination of their bail.
But the NANS President said: “After a
painstaking review of the circumstances
surrounding the draconian ruling, we have
resolved to hereby demand the unconditional
release of these students within 24 hours.
“Consequently, we make bold to state that if
at the expiration of our 24 hours ultimatum,
these innocent students are not released
without strings, we shall relocate the
Headquarters of NANS to Kirikiri in solidarity
with our members.
“We also hope that the authorities would use
the opportunity of the 24 hours ultimatum to
either expand the facilities of Kirikiri prison
or release our colleagues, as they can see we
are serious and determined by offering them a
fair choice.”
Obasi warned that if the best the Magistrate
could do in the prevailing circumstances was
to clamp University students to a prison
facility and thereby unwittingly radicalise
them, NANS would help him to understand the
implications of his unbalanced judgement that
does not tally with the offence allegedly
“Being first time offenders, the Magistrate, if
ever he was once a University student would
have handed down a stern warning and
demand of good behaviour instead of sending
them to prison for whatever reasons.
“In saner climes what the Magistrate should
have done was to certify that the suspects are
bonafide students and release them to their
school authorities or student leaders.
“But rather than factor in the extenuating
circumstances of their protest, the Magistrate
apparently in a hurry to please some hidden
forces, decided to blunt the proper
socialization of 13 Nigerian leaders of
tomorrow,” he said.

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