Nigerian Union Of Teachers

By Chioma Onuegbu, Uyo

THE Nigeria Union of Teachers, NUT, Ikot Ekpene Branch, has decried alleged unlawful arrest and detention of one Mrs.  Comfort Edet, of Methodist Township School, in Ikot Ekpene Local government area of Akwa Ibom state by the police over the abduction of a pupil from the School.

This is contained in a statement entitled, “Unlawful detention of a teacher by Police officers: The Resolution of NUT”,  which was  Signed by Comrade Bassey Akpanama NUT Secretary Ikot Ekpene Branch, and made available to newsmen on Thursday in Uyo.

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According to the statement, the Union after its meeting, on Wednesday January, 26, 2022 alerted the public of its resolution that all teachers in Ikot Ekpene should observe a Sit-at-Home action over the Police refusal to release the teacher after 9days of alleged  unlawful detention.

The statement reads, “Consequent upon the abduction of a school pupil from Methodist Township School, 34 Chubb Road, Ikot Ekpene, which culminated into an unlawful arrest and detention of the class teacher of the abducted child, Mrs Comfort Edet, for 9 days now, NUT Ikot Ekpene Branch had a Joint Consultative Meeting with all heads of Primary Schools today, 26th January, 2022. 

“The meeting was necessitated by the fact that the 48 hours ultimatum given to all stakeholders of education and various security agencies by NUT for immediate release of the innocent teacher is elapsing today by mid night.

“At the meeting, NUT Ikot Ekpene Branch directed that all public primary schools should be temporarily shut down and that teachers/pupils should remain at home until the teacher is released from police detention.

“However, if after an additional 48 hours from tomorrow and the teacher is still being kept behind police bars, all public secondary school teachers will embark on the same solidarity action. Meanwhile, NUT Ikot Ekpene Branch has instituted a formidable Task Force to go round all public primary schools and ensure that the directives of NUT are adhered to hook, line and sinker. 

“While NUT urges public primary school teachers to remain at home, they are equally enjoined to pray for the recovery of the abducted child as well as the release of the innocent teacher. On solidarity, we stand!”

The Union even alleged that the continued detention followed the inability of the teacher to pay the sum of N100,000 required for her bail.

“The police, we have gathered made two arrests, the head teacher of the school and the lady teacher still in detention. The head teacher was released because she could afford N100,000 demanded from her by the police. 

“The unfortunate class teacher could not afford the N100,000 required for her bail hence her continued detention. The said lady teacher is also said to be nursing an infant baby. It is unfathomable how and why the police would be so heartless as to keep a breastfeeding mother behind bars for this length of time without trial.

“Also, information from an impeccable source reveals that the said Lady’s traditional marriage was slated for today, Thursday 27th January 22. The Ikot Ekpene Branch of the NUT has done well to initiate decisive action towards ensuring the freedom for their member who has been seriously dehumanized by the irascible action of the police.

“The general public should please join in calling on the police to release the lady teacher on bail pending the conclusion of its investigations as the law prescribes”, the statement added.

Meanwhile, the Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Odiko MacDon is yet to react to the allegation regarding

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