By Peter Okutu, Abakaliki
The Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Ebonyi state, Nwoba Chika Nwoba was yesterday arraigned before a Magistrate court sitting in Abakaliki for allegedly publishing materials on his Facebook against the member, representing Ikwo/Ezza South federal constituency in the House of Representatives, Hon. Chinedu Ogah.
This is the second time he was being arraigned within two days and remanded.
On Wednesday, Nwoba was arraigned and remanded for publishing materials on his Facebook page against Governor Dave Umahi which the police said was punishable under section 516 A (a) of the Criminal Code Cap 33 Vol. 1 Laws of the state, 2009 and Section 5 (1) (a) of the state Cybercrimes(Prohibition) Law No.012 of 2021.
He was arraigned on a six-count charge bothering on fake news with intent to cause fear and alarm to the public.
According to the charge, the Publicity Secretary of the PDP in his Facebook posts portrayed Hon. Chinedu Ogah as insignificant and unfit to be a House of Representatives member portrayed him as greedy and corrupt, portrayed him as a terrorist, land grabber, deceiver, timid and non-achiever, which is causing annoyance, inconvenience and insult to the federal lawmaker.
After the six-count charges were read before the defendant, his counsel, Luke Nkwegu urged the court to strike out the charges against Nwoba.
He averred that the charges were brought against Nwoba by the police in bad faith to keep him behind bars.
The defendant’s counsel added that the Cybercrimes Prohibition Law of the state upon which Nwoba was being tried, was not gazetted and that ungazetted law was not a law and prayed the court to grant the defendant bail.
But the Police Prosecutor, ASP Mathias Eze opposed Nkwegu and urged the court to remand Nwoba.
“We submit that the validity of a law enacted by an act of parliament, however it may be is determined by the assent of the Governor or President”, he told the court.
In her ruling, the trial Magistrate, Blessing Chukwu said the court lacks the jurisdiction to entertain the matter and ordered that the accused be remanded in police custody in line with Covid-19 protocol.
She ordered that the case file be transmitted to the State Attorney General, Department of Police Prosecution and adjourned the matter to February 4.