SAN accuses Ayade of blackmailing PDP candidate, shielding murder suspect
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mba Ukweni, has accused Cross River State Government of a deliberate attempt to shield a murder suspect in the state while blackmailing the Peoples Democratic Party’s House of Representatives candidate for Obudu, Bekwarra and Obanliku Federal Constituency seat in the forthcoming election, Peter Akpanke, over the same matter.
Ukweni, who is the lead counsel for the embattled candidate, made the allegation in a statement made available to newsmen in Calabar yesterday.
Akpanke was earlier declared wanted by the state police command in connection with the suspected murder of one Emmanuel Martin, a Police Inspector.
Martin, according to reports, was shot and killed on May 25, 2022, in Obudu, Cross River North, during the House of Representatives primaries of the PDP.
Ukweni described the police action as politically motivated and aimed at distracting his client as he prepares for election.
However, the state Police Command, speaking through its Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Irene Ugbo, said she acted on a court order “Re-Charge NO HC/80C/2022”, issued by Justice Blessing Ekpo of the Cross River State High Court.
The SAN said: “Peter Akpanke is not running away from any trial, but we will bring to the fore the fact that Peter did nothing, the person who committed this offence was arrested and handed over to the police. The police have taken the statements. Regrettably, the person who brought those who killed the Inspector is not standing trial. The person, who fired the shot that killed the policeman is shielded by the state governor and the Attorney General of the state had to give fiat to a private prosecutor, it shows the interest the government has in this matter.”