Labour Party Chieftain, Dr Doyin Okupe, has labelled his arrest by operatives of the Department of State Service, on behalf of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, as an ‘error’.
Premium Politics reported that the immediate past Director General of the Labour Party presidential campaign organization was arrested at the Muritala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos State, on his way for medicals in London.
Okupe’s arrest was confirmed in separate statements by one of his lawyers, Tolu Babaleye, and the Public Relations Officer for DSS, Dr Peter Afunanya, on Thursday.
However, Okpue who broke the silence after his release said that his arrest by the DSS at the request of the EFCC should not have happened.
He also revealed that the officers of the EFCC in Lagos and Abuja have apologised for the error in his arrest.
Okupe said, “I was arrested and detained at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos this morning, January 12, on my way to the UK for medicals, years after my passport was withheld by the FHC, Abuja.
“I just left the EFCC office where the senior and younger officers in Lagos and Abuja apologised to me for the error.”
‘When Will Okupe’s Harassment Stop?’
Meanwhile, Babaleye, frowned at the arrest of the former Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to President Olusegun Obasanjo and Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs to President Goodluck Jonathan.
In an earlier statement, Babaleye described the arrest as unfair to Okupe whose health is said to be ‘fast failing.’
He wrote, “The information reaching me now is that Dr. Doyin Okupe has been arrested at Lagos Airport by the DSS on his way to London. The reason according to the source is that he was asked to produce evidence that the Federal High Court Abuja has freed him from the case in which he was convicted and paid a fine to the knowledge of the whole world and was allowed to go home.
“When will this harassment stop? Who is after Dr. Doyin Okupe? As at today, the man has no case to answer anywhere, I hereby demand that the DSS should release my Client immediately as it is a violation of his freedom of movement, right to liberty and dignity as a human person. This is unfair as the man’s health is fast failing!”, he wrote.
We Acted On EFCC’s Order – DSS
Meanwhile, the DSS on Thursday confirmed that Okupe’s arrest was carried out on behalf of the anti-corruption agency.
DSS PRO Afunanya said, “Doyin Okupe was intercepted by DSS at Terminal 1 of Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos this morning at the instance of the EFCC,” Afunanya said in a text message sent to The PUNCH enquiring about his (Okupe) arrest.
“He has long been handed over to the commission which requested the action. Okupe was billed to fly to London via Virgin Atlantic,” he added.