Eket -Gov. Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom has ordered the arrest of officials of Child Rights and Rehabilitation Network (CRARN), an NGO based in Eket.
Akpabio gave this order in a phone_in programme on the state radio in Uyo on Friday while reacting to a news report by Cable News Network (CNN).
He accused the NGO of exaggerating the child witch syndrome in the state for what he called “monetary gains.”
Akpabio said the State Government had taken steps to protect the rights of children stigmatised on suspicion of witchcraft by the domestication of the Child Rights Act in 2008.
He said government was had also concluded plans to prosecute parents and clergymen who stigmatised children for witchcraft.
“The state government has about five pending cases before the courts,” he said.
A correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) who visited the center on Friday reports that staff of the centre, which housed some 250 children, were still in their duty post.
President of CRARN, Mr Sam Ikpe_Itauma, could not be reached for comments as he was said to be out of town.