A criminal complaint has been filed before a Chief Magistrate’s court in the Nigerian capital Abuja by an activist, Kenechukwu Okeke, against Nigeria’s top celebrities and individuals connected to the nationwide #EndSARS protests that took place last month, accusing them of conspiracy and promotion of “unlawful assembly under the guise or composition of EndSARS.”
According to Okeke, properties belonging to him were destroyed during the protests “by some riotous and tumultuous person(s) instigated and incited by the accused persons.”
The 50 defendants include ARISE News anchor Laila Johnson – Salami, Musician Damini Ogulu aka Burna Boy, David Adeleke popularly known as Davido, Folarin Falana popularly known as Falz; and social media comedians, Debo Adebayo aka Mr. Macaroni, and Maryam Akpaokagi aka Taoma.
Other musicians sued include Peter and Paul Okoye, Innocent Idibia aka Tuface, Bankole Wellington popularly known as Banky W, Tiwa Savage, Michael Ajereh aka Don Jazzy, and Yemi Alade.
Other defendants listed are Senior Pastor, Daystar Christian Centre, Pastor Sam Adeyemi; activist, Aisha Yesufu; former Super Eagles legend, Kanu Nwankwo; Dr Joe Abah; journalist, Kiki Mordi, and actors, Yul Edochie and Uche Jombo.
Some social media influencers who were also listed as defendants are Feyikemi Abudu, Olorunrinu Oduala, Pamilerin Adegoke, Japhet Omojuwa, Ayo Sogunro and Deji Adeyanju were also joined in the suit.
The case was instituted on Monday pursuant to sections 88, 109(a), 110(1)(c) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015.
In the Affidavit which was deposed by the complainant, Okeke averred that they all conspired on “Twitter” with a view to inciting the public in the #EndSARS protest.
“That the 1st to 50th accused persons, between 3rd day of October 2020 and 28th day of October 2020 using Twitter, an internet web source with URL (https://www.Twitter.com) within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did conspire amongst themselves to commit a misdemeanour, to wit, promoting or acting in such a manner with the intent to assist in the promotion of an unlawful assembly under the guise or composition of “#EndSARS”, adding that they have committed an offence under Section 97(2) of the Penal Code Act.
He was of the view that they conspired under the cover of #EndSARS “as to cause persons in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja to fear on reasonable grounds that such assembly needlessly and without any reasonable occasion may provoke other persons tumultuously to disturb the peace.”
By Abel Ejikeme