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Army Releases Wife Of Buratai Critic As Reps Seek To Intervene

Victoria Idakpini, the wife of Lance Corporal Martins Idakpani, who criticised Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, the Chief of Army Staff, has been freed from detention by the Nigerian Army.

It was learnt that Victoria was released on Thursday, nine days after she was held by the army following her husband’s criticism of Buratai over the handling of the Boko Haram terrorists, the Punch reports.

Victoria’s husband, Lance Corporal Idakpani from the 8 Division, Sokoto of the Nigerian Army, had in a viral video specifically slammed the Chief of Army Staff, General Gabriel Olonisakin, the Chief of Defence Staff; Major-General Babagana Monguno (red), the National Security Adviser, and other members of the military’s top brass over the perceived inefficiency of the command in the war against terrorism.

Following the arrest of her husband, Victoria was subsequently arrested after she granted a media interview demanding the release of her husband from the army’s custody.

The newspaper reported that sources explained she was arrested penultimate Tuesday and spent nine days in the military guardroom where she was locked up.

Her phone was also confiscated.

Her release came after a human rights lawyer, Tope Akinyode, vowed to institute a lawsuit against the Nigerian Army over the unlawful detention of the couple.

Akinyode insisted that the case will continue despite Victoria’s release.

Meanwhile, the House of Representatives has begun intervening in the matter.

This comes after Ndudi Elumelu, the Minority Leader, moved a motion entitled: ‘A Call on the Nigerian Army to Release Lance Corporal Martins Idakpein from Arrest on the Basis of His Expressed Opinion”, at plenary on Thursday.

According to Elumelu, the detention of the soldier and his wife is against the 1999 constitution (as amended).

He said: “The House is disturbed that though Section 122 of the Armed Forces Act forbids the military from perpetually detaining any officer, Lance Corporal Martins ldakpein has been held in detention till date and his wife who tried to secure his release has also been detained.

“This is an affront to the letters of Chapter 4 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended, which guarantees the fundamental human rights of citizens.”

The House mandated the Committees on Defence and Army to “investigate the alleged detention of Lance Corporal Martin’s ldakpein and his wife”.

The House also asked that “ldakpein should be brought before the relevant House committees and the leadership, to brief them of the happening in the northern part of the country”.



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