‘He is not a cultist’ – NANS defends Ilaro SUG president

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The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has defended the embattled Students’ Union President of the Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, Ogun State, Mr Tunji Adegboye.

It also condemned what it described as the media trial of the accused who has been in police custody since Sunday over alleged involvement in cultism.

Leadership of NANS in South Western Nigeria, otherwise known Zone D, on Friday said its independent investigations show that Adegboye was not a cultist as even the police was yet to prove.

EduCeleb.com recalls that following announced arrest of Adegboye on Monday by the police, his polytechnic suspended him on Monday just as the students’ Union legislative arm impeached him.

But while speaking with journalists on Tuesday, Adegboye denied the allegations of cultism leveled against him.

He claimed to have been framed by unnamed persons who were against his clamour against rent hike around the school.

He also suggested that he was hypnotised to be at the point of his arrest where the police had declared him to be initiating new cultists.

“We have been following with keen interests events as they unfold as regards the arrest of the Students’ Union President of Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, Adegboye Emmanuel Olatunji most especially as it relate to the allegation of cultism levied against him by the Nigerian Police Force, Ogun State Command,” the statement signed by factional NANS Zone D chairman, Kowe Amos read in part.

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“Without bothering the public with unnecessary rhetorics, we make bold to assert that after our fact-findings coupled with the incoherent publications being released by the Force PRO, it appears that there is a deliberate effort to tarnish the image of these guys with the way the case is being handled despite the fact that the Police is yet to prove beyond reasonable doubt that he is indeed a cultist which is necessary in criminal litigation.”

“One thing we have been able to establish is that there is an effort by some persons to frame Adegboye up and this is evident in the quick manner in which the management of the institution suspended him without giving him the platform to defend himself which is clearly against the principle of fair hearing as guaranteed under Section 36(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).”

“The Nigeria Police Force must therefore be made to understand that we are not in the French judicial system whereby an accused is automatically guilty and would have to prove his innocence.”

“As it stands today, the onus of proof lies on the Nigeria Police Force and we make bold to challenge them to drop this media trial as is being done by them which is clearly against the right to dignity of human person and innocence of an accused until prove guilty as guaranteed under Section 34 and 36(5) respectively of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).”

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“We condemn in the strongest of terms the fact that the institution of the Police Force is being ridiculed and this outrightly smacks professionalism on their part.”

“It is obvious that there is a deliberate effort to destroy these guys as we have been able to ascertain in our fact-findings that even if they were to be members of NBM as they are being labelled, they would definitely not be in the rank to wear the clothes being put on and at the same time be found on their knees as claimed.”

The group demanded “an end be put to the media trial of the suspects.

It also challenged the beginning of court processes to unravel the truth behind the allegations.

“Failure to adhere to this shall be resisted with full resistance,” the statement ended.

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