Benue Commisioner Remanded in Prison


George Okoh in Makurdi
The Benue State Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Mr. Sekav Iortyom, is to spend time in the Makurdi prison following the order of Makurdi Chief Magistrate Court over an allegation of criminal conspiracy and culpable homicide.

Among the charges brought against Mr. Iortyom in court was failure to attend in obedience to an order from public servant.

The Commissioner was arrested following his alleged involvement in the murder of a university don and lecturer in the department of political science, Mkar University Gboko, Dr. Wilfred Tondo, who was murdered in cold blood last August.

According to the First Information Report (FIR) filed before the court by the prosecuting officer, Gabriel Agadu, the police ‘B’ Division in Gboko had last August received information that some gunmen numbering about three broke into the official residence of the lecturer in Gboko and shot him dead.

Part of the FIR read, “during Police investigation, Kosovenyi Kungwa, Emmanuel Nyajo and David Yiman were arrested and charged to the Chief Magistrate Court 1 Makurdi.

“However, Sekav Iortyom who was given administrative bail and appointed to report to the police on October 25, 2016 but failed, was later arrested for conspiring with the above named and others now at large to commit the crime.”

At the mention of the case, no plea was taken for want of jurisdiction, but the defence counsel, Mr. Christian Teeve, entered an oral plea for the bail of the accused.
However, the prosecuting officer opposed the plea on the grounds that investigation into the matter was ongoing.

In her ruling, the presiding Chief Magistrate, Mrs. Felicia Ikyegh, who directed that the bail plea be put down in writing and made formally, ordered that the accused be remanded at the Makurdi Medium Prison and adjourned the matter to February 9, 2017 for further mention.

An adviser to the state governor and a local government sole administrator were also remanded in prison over allegation of murder earlier in the year.