8th October, 2021
The National President of the Actors Guild of Nigeria, Ejezie Emeka Rollas, has secured the release of Actor Chiwetalu Agu from the custody of the Nigerian Army.
The Senior Special Assistant on Military Affairs and Inter-Governmental Relations to the President, Steve Eboh, confirmed the release from the Army Barracks in Enugu.
He thanked the High Command of the Nigerian Army for their cooperation and understanding in the matter.
The National President also commended the efforts of the leadership of the pan Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo for their collaborative efforts on the matter.
However, the National President debunked the earlier statement credited to him on the arrest of the veteran Actor.
Emeka said he has not made any official public or private statement on the matter since Agu was arrested.
“The public is hereby advised to disregard the report which trended on social media on the matter,” Emeka stated.
Chiwetalu Agu’s arrest
The Nigerian Army had arrested Nollywood actor, Chiwetalu Agu, on Thursday for “inciting members of the public and soliciting support for the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB)”.
The Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Onyema Nwachukwu, said the veteran actor was picked up for questioning after he was spotted in a well-known attire of the proscribed group.
The army however debunked the claims that Agu was brutalized.
“Though he attempted putting up some resistance when troops made effort to take him into custody, he was not assaulted or subjected to brutalization,” the statement read in part.
“While the NA recognizes the inalienable rights of the citizenry to freedom of movement and expression as enshrined in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, it is apparently a violation for any individual or group to incite the public to cause mayhem or break down of law and order.
“It is, therefore, pertinent to state that while exercising such freedoms, it must be done within the confines of the law, bearing in mind the imperative for peace, and national security.”
The army further emphasised that IPOB remains proscribed, noting, therefore, that any individual or group seen to be projecting and advancing the cause or activities of the group is viewed as brazenly challenging the constitutionality of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“More worrisome was the fact that considering the prevailing security situation of the region, coupled with the ongoing Exercise Golden Dawn, his action could be a tacit endorsement and support for the proscribed group. We have all witnessed the activities of the group take a violent dimension in recent times.
“Chiwetalu Agu has clearly demonstrated uncharitable disposition to negate peace and security in the region, hence, he is taken into custody for preliminary investigation.
“It is important to once again place on record that the allegation that he was brutalised is false and should be disregarded accordingly.
“While the NA would not allow IPOB and its sponsors to hold the region captive and allow the security situation to degenerate, it is instructive to restate that national interest supersedes any parochial consideration. Individuals or groups who fan the embers of violence are warned to desist or face the consequences of their actions.
“The ongoing Exercises are on course and will rid the region of all forms of criminality”.