The Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Alkali Usman Baba, has set the stage for the trial of an Abuja-based housewife, Mrs Chinyere Amuchiena Igwegbe, for allegedly blackmailing and supplying false information against a former governor of Imo State, Dr Ikedi Ohakim.
Mrs Igwegbe is to be put on trial at a the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja on charges of making unsubstantiated allegations against the former governor and one Chinedu Okpareke, to the police.
In a petition to the IGP, Mrs Igwegbe, had accused Ohakim of conspiracy, criminal intimidation, defamation of character, attempted kidnapping and threat to her life.
She also alleged paying to Ohakim a sum of N500m for the purchase of a land in Lagos during the 2019 general elections.
The Police, however, claimed that the allegations were unsubstantiated during their investigation and that they were aimed at blackmailling her victims.
In a four-count criminal charge marked CR/187/2021 already filed against her and obtained by our correspondent, Mrs Igwegbe who lives at Apo District of Abuja was said to have in the petition raised false allegations of conspiracy, intimidation, attempted kidnapping and threat to life against the former governor.
Igwegbe had among other false information, alleged that Ohakim alongside Okpareke threatened to release a nude photograph of her to the general public through the social media.
Although, police authorities arrested the former governor and filed criminal charges against him, Mrs Igwegbe was later arrested when it was found that the allegations in her petition were mere blackmail and unsubstantiated claims.
She was arrested by police operatives at the premises of a Federal High Court in Abuja after a court session where the Inspector General of Police had applied to withdraw the charge against the former governor.
However, earlier attempt to arraign her at an Abuja High Court on the four-count charge could not hold due to non-availability of the case file in the court prompting police to shift the arraignment for July 19.
In the charge signed by Matthew Omasun and Rotshang Faith Dimka, both of the Legal/Prosecution Unit of the Force Headquarters in Abuja, Mrs Igwegbe was accused of supplying false information to the police with the intention to defame the former governor.
Count one of the charge reads: “that you Chinyere Amuchienwa Igwegbe (f) of 7b Emeida Estate Apo, Abuja, FCT, on or about August 14, 2020, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did furnish police authorities with false information and via allegations in a petition by your solicitors, Agala and Agala chambers to a public servant against (1) Dr. Ikedi Ohakim (2) Chinedu Okpareke on allegations of criminal conspiracy, criminal intimidation, defamation of character, attempted kidnapping and threat to life punishable with imprisonment, which could not be substantiated and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 140 of the Penal Code laws of Northen Nigeria.”
In count two, the police accused her “of furnishing the police authorities with false information via allegations in a petition against Dr. Ikedi Ohakim on the false allegations that you paid Dr. Ikedi Ohakim the sum of N500 million naira for the purchase of a land in Lagos during the 2019 election, an allegations which could not be substantiated.”
In count three, she was accused of “intentionally exposing her genital organs and intentionally caused distress to other parties and that you did so with a selfie video with intention of deriving sexual pleasure from such act and you thereby committed an offence punishable under section 26(3) of the violence against persons (prohibition)Act, 2015.”
The offences are punishable under sections 140, of the Penal Code laws of the Northern Nigeria and section 26 (3) of the Violence Against Persons (prohibition) Act, 2015.
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