Deborah Samuel
Late Deborah Samuel

By Ikechukwu Nnochiri & Musa Na Anna

The police in Sokoto have declared the men seen in the viral video of the murder of Deborah Samuel, the killed 200-level student of Shehu Shagari College of Education, for culpable homicide.

Sokoto State Police Command’s Public Relations Officer, ASP Sanusi Abubakar, disclosed this in a statement, yesterday, a day after two other suspects were arraigned for killing the young lady.

“Prime suspects that claimed responsibility for the murder of Deborah Samuel in the viral video were declared wanted,” Abubakar said.

He called on members of the public to cooperate with the police and report to the command or any security outfit in their domain if they have information on the suspects.

He also assured that the Sokoto Police Command is committed to apprehending the suspects, adding: “The command has already deployed all its intelligence and is on the lookout for the suspects.”

NBA demands review of charge against culprits to include murder

Meanwhile, the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, has urged the Sokoto State government to review the charge it preferred against those that were arrested over the extra-judicial murder of Miss Deborah Yakubu.

NBA said it was worried by reports that the suspects “were charged with mere breach of the public peace, in an episode that cut short Deborah’s life in her prime.”

The association in a statement signed by its President, Mr Olumide Apata, and made available to newsmen, yesterday, decried that Nigerians and the international community expected that the culprits should be brought to justice speedily for the appropriate offences.

The statement noted that the demand for the release of those arraigned by protesting youths, coupled with assault on innocent citizens, burning of worship centres and destruction of property, “added an entirely new and worrisome dimension to the unfortunate incident.”

Postpones Sokoto conference

Consequently, the legal body said because of the sad turn of events and deteriorating security situation in Sokoto State, it has postponed the 2022 NBA-SPIDEL Annual Conference billed to take place in the state, “not only for the safety of our conferees and guests but as a mark of respect for the memory of the slain Miss Deborah Yakubu.”

The statement read: “The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) unequivocally condemns extrajudicial killings in any part of the country as reprehensible, barbaric and unacceptable. Our security agencies must do more to stem these ugly developments and ensure that the perpetrators of these heinous acts, wherever or whoever they may be, are made to face the full wrath of the law.

“The government should immediately commence the prosecution of all suspects involved in these brutal and arbitrary killings to send a strong signal that such acts will no longer be tolerated in Nigeria. 

“The NBA also believes that the prompt and effective prosecution of the alleged killers will instil confidence in the citizens, promote accountability, and signpost the government’s commitment to the rule of law.

“With particular reference to the murder of Miss Deborah Yakubu and related developments in Sokoto, we note that some arrests have been made by the Police and that the suspects are now being prosecuted. We are, however, worried by yet-to-be-confirmed reports reaching us that the suspects have been charged with mere breach of public peace in an episode that cut short Deborah’s life in her prime.

“The NBA is strongly opposed to a banalisation of the situation, and if these reports are true, then we call on the Sokoto State Government to immediately rethink its prosecution strategy and file charges that truly reflect the gravity of the situation.”

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