Justice For Uzoma Okere

Posted on Sunday, November 9th, 2008 at 9:26 AM

By BellaNaija.com

On my way home from work on Monday 3rd November 2008, I sat listening to the radio while in trafiic. Suddenly, the radio presenter started describing an ongoing assault on a young lady on Muri Okunola Street in Victoria Island Lagos. He was appealing to the authorities to intervene and stop a gang of Navy Officers from brutally assaulting a young lady. To say I was in shock would be an understatement. I even thought to myself, ‘maybe he (the radio presenter) is exaggerating…’, I was like ‘there is NO way this could be happening today in Lagos’. Well I was SO wrong.

Uzoma Okere was driving on Muri Okunola Street in Victoria Island Lagos on Monday, 3rd of November 2008. The sirened convoy of Rear Admiral Arogundade came along and she did not maneuver her car out of the way quickly enough. She was then dragged from her vehicle and brutally beaten and stripped of her clothing. She was even forcibly moved to a secondary location,  Palm Kernel House located at No. 253 Muri Okunola Street where the physical assault continued. Apparently her ‘offenses’ included not moving quickly enough then proceeding to hold the horsewhip of one of the Navy officers as her was trying to intimidate her.

The incident was in broad daylight and many witnesses saw what happened. There have even been video uploads of parts of the assault on the internet – HERE

There is an ongoing investigation into the matter. The Presidency is said to be aware and I know that Uzoma has met with Lagos State Governor Fashola.

There is a campaign to ensure that justice is served and this isnt swept under the rug like many similar incidents.

See details below.

In a week where the USA celebrated ‘change’ and progress with the election of Barack Obama, in my opinion, Nigeria took another step back as a young lady (it hits so close to home and is so startling that it could have been me or you!) is assualted in broad daylight. Lets do something and ensure that this never happens again!

______________

From Ebun Olatoye

Dear All,

I was with Uzoma Okere in Alausa yesterday and at the Ministry of Justice therafter where we edited the petition to ensure it was explicit about what we want.

But let’s not celebrate yet. The battle has just begun.

It ends when we justice has been served. And we will keep at these protests until justice is administered on the rating monsters.

If you want to lend your voice to the injustice, please come to 14 Muri Okunola at 12.30p.m on Sunday November 9.

We will be there till 3pm with a video camera to record the faces and voices of incensed Nigerians.

From there we will proceed to University of Lagos where filming will continue at 4pm- 7pm in front of Moremi Hall. Similar filming will take place on Sunday in London, New Jersey and Beijing.

We all have a responsibility for what happened. We permit it by not speaking.We intend to broadcast the footage on local and international television in order to inspire shame in each one of us as individiuals and in our government.

We will continue to air the clip on rotation until justice is served. Please spread the word. We look forward to seeing you there on Sunday and please send this to all your friends on facebook.

Ebun Olatoye.

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  • 57 Comments on “Justice For Uzoma Okere”

    Comments
    • Pepe November 9, 2008 at 4:55 PM

      Where and when is the London gathering taking place?

    • Chi-Chi November 9, 2008 at 6:55 PM

      WOW! Stuff like that makes me go hmm….

    • Nkizm November 9, 2008 at 9:46 PM

      please can we have details of the london events…this is diegraceful…this is why we can never move forward… our mentality is the cause of our underdevelopment…useless naval officers who cannot treat their wives or daughter the same way..total abuse of power…to say im irritated is an understatement

    • Nkizm November 9, 2008 at 9:47 PM

      please can we have details of the london events…this is disgraceful…this is why we can never move forward… our mentality is the cause of our underdevelopment…useless naval officers who cannot treat their wives or daughter the same way..total abuse of power…to say im irritated is an understatement

    • Nky November 9, 2008 at 11:33 PM

      I am so ashamed, These are the so called naval officer’s we put our trust in, to protect and serve our nation, rather they spend their efforts and time taking advantage of the Law, by assulting an innocent individual… Nigerians we need to move forward. What a dissapointing video.

    • adaora November 10, 2008 at 9:15 AM

      i just saw the most disgraceful and appalling video clip this morning on what Nigerians did to an innocent and harmless fellow Nigerian, Uzoma Okere!. All i can say now is that Justice must be allowed to prevail and take it’s full course because if for any reason man tries to obstruct justice, God’s Justice will prevail, which is even worse.

      This kind of rubbish has been happening in this Lagos and all over the nation and should be used as a deterrent to all the ‘power drunk officers’, and even the rich whose security details are not any better.

      God save Nigeria!.

    • [...] Read about the incident here, here. She narrates: my ordeal in the hands of naval ratings, and here. [...]

    • Segun Jnr November 10, 2008 at 11:16 AM

      We are no more in the military era where men in uniform believe they are God, the bastard of Admiral surely have a wife and daughter, how could he stand there and allow his men assault her like that, he must be a saddist or a morron but I think he’s both. The people should call for his resignation and to be dealt with accordingly. This bastard are the one destroying our once great country. Corruption is not only taking money, it is as well not following the due process laid down. Uzoma, I wish you speedy recovery and wishing you the best in life, Naval senate should see to this and should compensate you. I’m so sorry about this. God bless you.

    • lucky November 10, 2008 at 2:32 PM

      What is so annoying is that millions of such cases occurs around the populace.What are the military up to? I could remember that it was also a Naval personnel that pulled the trigger against an okada man just because of a mere scratch.I think its high time all is allowed to carry guns around and stop this barbaric act by Force men especially the police men.

    • Martins November 10, 2008 at 2:41 PM

      If the naval personnel have children, many more act will be meted on them too.Nothing is ever lost.If this act is allowed to go free, it means we are not really ready for democratic change. All we are practising is cosmetic Democracy. i think a dismissal can be good enough to start with, so that it can act as a lesson to others. Lets see if more will not happen again.

    • Marian November 10, 2008 at 3:41 PM

      I have been a victim of this too, from soldiers. I was viciously attacked by like 4 of them. On seeing a superior army officer passing by, people flagged him down to talk to his boys, he made matters even worse by attacking some passer-by that took pictures, and ordering his boys to ‘deal with the bastard for taking pictures’. Well, my attack was not as severe as Uzoma’s, but it does more damage to the psyche than even physically. Thats when i lost faith totally in Nigeria. Hope we can get some justice for Uzoma and everyone else that has been mistreated by those animals in uniform!

    • Sophia November 10, 2008 at 4:13 PM

      Miss Uzoma’s experience brings to mind one incident where an army sergeant at a road block threatened me. I am so appalled by the fact that these naval personnel attacked a woman and even stripped her naked. and there was I thinking that Nigeria was a democracy. This incident must not be allowed to disappear- the culprits must be shamed and punished as an extra to their colleagues.

    • Chidi November 10, 2008 at 7:06 PM

      I have in the past had threats from so called MOPOL (animal in uniform) that he can shoot me and nothing will happen to him. I think the Rear Animal Arugundade and his Naval ratings should all be dismissed from the force. The simple reason been biting the finger that feeds them (tax payer, whose money is used to pay their salary). Unless, decisive action is taken, this will continue to happen as it is happening everyday in Nigeria from LASMA to the military.

    • tyna November 10, 2008 at 8:27 PM

      Ms. Uzoma story at the hand of law enforcement in Nigeria is really sad and disgraceful. I pray justice be served, the thought of this act being a common treatment of innocent citizens is apublic disgrace. as a young lady who is planning to come back home to Nigeria someday soon, i seriously want to support any efforts out there to push for justice and also training for the law enforcment.

    • Funmie November 11, 2008 at 2:14 AM

      omg…….. dats all i can say!

    • Kehinde Shote November 11, 2008 at 8:13 AM

      Hello all,

      Please join the petition on:

      http://nigeriavillagesquare.com/index.php?option=com_philaform&form_id=7&Itemid=1

      Together we can make a difference!

    • Estella November 11, 2008 at 5:08 PM

      SHAMEFUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Meg2 November 11, 2008 at 6:29 PM

      We keep talking about change and never allows it to come, Nigeria what is happening. We all saw what happened in America and how the whole world was part of it all, the struggles, the jubilation….
      I think the Rear Admiral should kindly resign to save his name and that of the Armed forces. Men that have the responsibility of fighting injustice practicing it at broad daylight, All the ratings should be withdrawn from the force at once and undergo severe military court Marshall procedures as a lesson to the rest. I believe in the Nigerian Armed forces and we represent Justice, peace and freedom, and of course War in War Zones not otherwise.

    • lucy November 11, 2008 at 8:58 PM

      one thing i noticed from watching the video was how the onlookers did not lend a hand. All the people there could have taken those officers. and I am NOT advocating even more violence. But the fact is that the oppression is not just physical, its psychological too.
      I guess that WHEN this issue is resolved justly it will do all Nigerians good, whether we were the ones assaulted, we saw others assaulted or just heard about it.

    • Ms. Chi November 11, 2008 at 11:13 PM

      That is some complete bullshit!! I hope they get what they deserve. A very sad day for Nigeria indeed.

    • saddam November 12, 2008 at 5:45 AM

      For Sure its so bad this happened to Uzomah Okere but I just want Everyone to know that lots of people including bus driver’s have suffered more than this along Ajegunle/Apapa Area of Lagos.
      From The convoy of the Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Western Naval Command.
      I have witnessed it enuff times.

      My Question is
      I’m not condoling the barbaric acts of the naval ratings. But
      Why The Hype is much abt this is Na cos She be the child of a known personality.
      The Law of Nature Has caught up with Her. As a result of The Father’s sin
      Lets go down the memory lane and recall tht Her father On this day, 16th December 2004,as the Chief Security Officer [CSO] of the National Assembly, Col. Emeka Okere [rtd] according to reports, supervised the beating, slapping and intimidating of innocent Under Masari’ Era.

      Its on the web
      http://www.nairaland.com/nigeria/topic-194084.0.html

      -Col Okere rtd,is never a saint as he profess in the above published interviews and that his past deed have brought this shame to himself(humiliation of the daughter)

    • saddam November 12, 2008 at 5:50 AM

      For Sure its so bad this happened to Uzomah Okere but I just want Everyone to know that lots of people including bus driver’s have suffered more than this along Ajegunle/Apapa Area of Lagos.
      From The convoy of the Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Western Naval Command.
      I have witnessed it enuff times.

      My Question is
      I’m not condoling the barbaric acts of the naval ratings. But
      Why The Hype is much abt this is Na cos She be the child of a known personality.
      The Law of Nature Has caught up with Her. As a result of The Father’s sin
      Lets go down the memory lane and recall tht Her father On this day, 16th December 2004,as the Chief Security Officer [CSO] of the National Assembly, Col. Emeka Okere [rtd] according to reports, supervised the beating, slapping and intimidating of innocent Under Masari’ Era.

      Its on the web
      http://www.nairaland.com/nigeria/topic-194084.0.html

      -Col Okere rtd,is never a saint as he profess in the above published interviews and that his past deed have brought this shame to himself(humiliation of the daughter)

    • KIKE(ARDENT READER) November 12, 2008 at 10:11 AM

      Hun…………sadam your comment on dis issue is out of point.what happened to UZOMA was uncalled 4.we shd all rise up and speak against d abuse of power and position in our land.Im glad wit d responses of pple and govt to dis show of shame from power drunk pple………………………..GOD DEY…..

    • Adewunmi November 12, 2008 at 10:43 AM

      No, the hype has nothing to do with her being a daughter of a known personality, she could have been a daughter of a road side kolanut seller.
      The issues are that she is human, female and the barbaric act was done to the full glare of the entire world without any caution that such act could be a complete embarrassment to our nation.
      We should try put a stop to nemesis that embarrasses us as civilized people. Arogundade could have stopped his DOGS !!!! with just a simple STOP !!! but he decided to supervise them physically brutalize the girl.
      Arogundade should be dismissed, so that such nationally embarrassing nemesis would not catch up with any of his children.
      As for the DOGS, I think they should be promoted for carrying out simple order by their superior.

    • Amara November 12, 2008 at 11:12 AM

      the hype in this is because it was caught on tape. its not your word against mine, the evidence is so glaring even for a blind man! but for all the others who went unnoticed, it was a case of no evidence and both the victim and witness, didnt dare take it up. also, there may not have been democracy then.
      i think we should at this point go along with our cameras 24/7.

    • saddam November 12, 2008 at 2:06 PM

      @kike
      well na u get ur mouth… say wht u wanna say

    • saddam November 12, 2008 at 2:17 PM

      Same time let us be realistic about this case

      Though they had no excuse, this Lady Must Have shown Her self….Tht possibly have vexed those naval ratings

      People avoid most of these military convoys, bullion vans cos their wahala too much…
      she self for done commot for road….This is nigeria..

    • tayo November 12, 2008 at 3:59 PM

      it is time for us as a nation to raise up against the likes of FOC Arogundade and his dogs. they abound everywhere, “agbero boys” beating up innocent bus drivers simply because of N20. What happend to Ms. Okere must stop. Our leaders have failed to fix the bad roads, create jobs, build better hospitals and other infrastructures, but yet, will use siren to chase us from the road, the road belong to every Nigeria. in fact this madness must stop.

    • tatafo! November 12, 2008 at 7:25 PM

      It’s more a case of people have had enough and now they have video evidence to prove what they’ve been enduring all these years. If you read Col. Okere’s interview about this issue and Uzoma’s account they both said that Arogundade at first denied beating up the daughter.

      This tells you that these convoy incidents have been denied in the past because there was no proof, nobody wants to come forward as witnesses because they fear for themselves.

    • lucy November 12, 2008 at 10:13 PM

      sadam you are a twat

    • lucy November 12, 2008 at 10:17 PM

      Sadam you are a fool for thinking otherwise. Assuming it was your MOTHER, WIFE OR SISTER that was beaten and disagraced in public your stupid arse wont be chatting nonsense. I wish you the same fate that befell uzoma.

    • Pat November 13, 2008 at 9:59 AM

      Promoted? No. Never. It could have been a younger sister to one of Arogundade dogs which would have brought about disobeying the last order eventually rebelion.

      Arogundade should be made to serve a term for abuse of power and jeorpazising the image of the country that Oga Shehu is trying to launder,

      the term to be served should be being a domestic worker of the victim or whoever she wishes for a period of five years.

    • Aniekan November 13, 2008 at 11:39 AM

      @ Lucy: onlookers did lend a hand but they were beaten with whips and the butts of guns (one of the guys’ hands was bleeding). i guess the rest of them decided to steer clear just so they dont get hurt as well……..cant blame them for that, can you?

    • saddam November 13, 2008 at 7:33 PM

      Hey Lucy or wht ever
      I revert ur cause to u.
      u re an Idiot

    • saddam November 13, 2008 at 7:39 PM

      Try n control ur Gut

    • Yewande November 14, 2008 at 8:11 AM

      Well Sadam, I guess we should call the ‘lady’ a heroine then for what I would term ‘standing up to injustice’ and not ‘vexing’ some naval ratings. As you have clearly stated, their wahala is too much and so looking at the silver lining here, we should be greatful for Uzoma’s case which seems to be helping to reduce the ‘wahala’ in the long run..If we all avoided the military convoys, it will greatly hinder any movement towards a proper democracy and you and I will be the worse for it.So let us embrace positive change and not try to remain in the current state of affairs. Uzoma’s case is beneficial to you and I. I am personally happy she did not move out of the way as much as I am sad that she received such a bashing, but atleast a lot of good is coming out of it.

    • Nero,Finland November 17, 2008 at 12:23 PM

      This is totally ridiculous….i still cannot believe such things can still happen anywhere on earth and nothing can be done about it.. i must add this…Sadam i read all your comments and this is what i have to say to you…I think you are the biggest fool i have heard of….how can you advice these ladies to stop the cause…after all the ¨special treatments¨you have seen these monsters in military uniforms mete out on innocent citizens and ladies for that matter….you better have a rethink dear because i believe you do not have a sister..

    • Nero,Finland November 17, 2008 at 12:27 PM

      Here are your words sadam…..¨¨Though they had no excuse, this Lady Must Have shown Her self….Tht possibly have vexed those naval ratings People avoid most of these military convoys, bullion vans cos their wahala too much…¨¨

      Are you trying to justify the reckless and crude actions of men in uniforms??? you have no head man please don¨t spoil my good day for me abeg.

    • Funmi November 17, 2008 at 4:30 PM

      I understand what Saddam means. In no way were those officers right for assaulting an innocent person but we should be honest with ourselves. The only reason this has been publicised is because she is from a wealthy background and she is educated. So many people have been attacked or even killed by police brutality who are nameless because they did not have educated people who are aware of human rights to speak up for them. In spite of this, what was done to this lady is unjustifiable and this campaign is a step in the right direction for all Nigerians- not just the privileged.

    • Otto November 18, 2008 at 10:37 AM

      b4 now i have been hearing in d media about d naval assault on uzoma bt i didnt want to pass any judgement.After seeing d video of d share brutality meted out to this defenseless girl, i now know that not only should Harry Arogundade be court martialed but should be made to face d firing squard.At his level of authority, he should know when to display honour, care and and utter regard for fellow human beings not to talk of d weaker sex.am totally outraged by this show of shame. For crying out loud, what is d big deal if a naval officer’s convoy is blocked?What even if he were d President? that means Uzoma would have been shot just like that!d Navy is not only guilty of this, same goes for Army, Air Force, Police and can u also imagine, d paramilitary.Yar’Adua MUST do something about this recklessness authorised by a senior serving naval officer if he is truly a custodian of RULE OF LAW.

    • tessa November 18, 2008 at 3:09 PM

      you are a poor excuse for a man.
      Read ezekiel
      whatever her father may have done (and i don’t beleive he has done anything wrong, my dad is a retired personnel and he was very kind all the while he was in the Navy) leaves no room for her to get beaten

      are you sure you e, are not related to the fellow who carried out those unforgivable atrocities, i am sorry for you wife, daughter and mother. God forbid they get into any trouble, you will not have the guts to even choose right.

      Youu have no ‘balls’ and so i suggest you shut up and leave Nigerians who want to make a difference to do so however they can.

    • tessa November 18, 2008 at 3:15 PM

      on whose side are you on?

      injustice had been meted out against uzoma. are you saying that because she is from a wealthy background, she should not seek justice

      since she has prove i say you go girl. for once i appreciate, or rather i appreciate again that i am from this generation where technology ensures that Rear admiral arogundade will not go unpunished

    • zazzy November 21, 2008 at 8:46 PM

      Replying to Nero abi na wetin u call u name, u are ridiculously stupid for saying the girl must have shown herself, she was mutilated for what, mehn!!am sure u have a sister and hopefully one day this happens to her and your open ur smelling mouth to say that. You are heartless as those cop, well u need to shut up ur mouth and never speak again.

    • Yuyu November 21, 2008 at 9:13 PM

      No, zazzy, you misunderstood, nero was actually chastising sadam for saying that. Zazzy was quoting sadam and saying that what sadam said was wrong.

    • zazzy November 22, 2008 at 7:05 PM

      Oh my bad,now i get it, well that ignorant sadam needs to be castrated.

    • Saddam November 29, 2008 at 10:51 AM

      u should be castrated first..

    • ike ibekwe December 21, 2008 at 1:15 AM

      “d Navy is not only guilty of this, same goes for Army, Air Force, Police and can u also imagine, d paramilitary……”

      paramilitary here does not just mean civil defense….imagine task force on sirened convoy….

      shame to the nation

    • ike ibekwe December 21, 2008 at 1:20 AM

      cant u see his name? saddam…..much like the one that was sentenced to death by hanging in iraq

    • ike December 21, 2008 at 1:25 AM

      here in the uk, the nobody uses siren except the emergency services eg ambulance and fire service. even the mayors up to the prime minister do not use sirens. rather their travel routes are plotted ahead of time, and adequate security is put in place along these routes. why should 9ja be an exception?

    • P1! Baba. December 21, 2008 at 5:25 AM

      You see, I concur with you my friend. Even though I’m an Armed Personnel, I do not condone the beating. For that I tender unreserved apologies on behalf of the whole Nigerian Armed Forces but come to think of it: Is it because the girl papa na big man na im dem come dey shout as if say the same thing no dey happen for Oshodi under bridge almost every other day? Anyone that’s doubting should visit under the Oshodi brisge for a week and be enlightened. Let’s not deceive ourselves. If the lady was someone without any clout, the whole issue would not have passed Muri Okunola Street in VI.

    • [...] so concerned about her injuries. Can you imagine that happening in Nigeria considering cases like Uzoma Okere’s. There are hardly any women’s shelters, access to counseling is sparse and bad advice is [...]

    • didi April 3, 2009 at 5:47 AM

      tessa i agree with you, wateva her dad might have done was not n shld not be a drivin force of torture on innocent people…unless we would all suffer brutality for the sins of our folks…..i put myself in her shoes wen i watch d video…and wouldnt have done different…..democracy? does that mean anything in Nigerian governance?

    • tunji September 18, 2009 at 11:44 AM

      Y not let the young woman substantiate her accusation in court. Haven’t u heard of fair hearing?
      If u accuse someone of doing anything wrong the onus is on u to prove beyond reasonable doubt.
      I can bet that so many people would be shocked to know that the Rear Admiral was not even @ the scene when it happen and to make matters worse the young lady was the aggressor
      Let her face the courts and state her side of the story and stop hiding behind screens.
      We know what happened

    • NineoSix January 28, 2010 at 8:03 AM

      @Tunji dear friend of Arogundade. YES we know what happened. Arogundade’s people beat the sh*t out of her for not moving quickly enough and then went on to strip her for ‘insolence’. I mean God forbid this girl had the audacity to challenge officers of the Very Important Person who is a Rear Admiral in our society. The man who owns the road called Muri Okunola, he built it with his money abi, he trained himself in the Navy with his own money not Nigeria’s money abi!!!! Our country’s money should not be USED to ABUSE its citizens. Your friend and his henchmen are terrorists. Rich, power obsessed Nigerians don’t deserve to beat up women on the street. It is her right to challenge idiocy and regressive thought processes like yours and Arogundade’s men! And thank God justice has been served in a court of law. N100million naira in damages. YES, NOW WE KNOW WHAT HAS HAPPENED…JUSTICE AT LAST!

    • Kassim A January 30, 2010 at 8:37 AM

      Yes,she has substantiated her argument in court,the savage brute and the navy have been ordered to pay her a hundred million naira,which to me is too poor.But I take consolation in the written apology arogundade has been ordered to write to her and have same published in four national dailies,the judge should have ordered him to go on national television and read the apology;FOR FULL EFFECT

    • abuja zip codes October 29, 2013 at 3:44 PM

      This is so shameful to us, paramilitary here does not just mean civil defense….imagine task force on sirened convoy….

      shame to the nation

    • abuja zip codes October 29, 2013 at 3:46 PM

      As you have clearly stated, their wahala is too much and so looking at the silver lining here, we should be greatful for Uzoma’s case which seems to be helping to reduce the ‘wahala’ in the long run..If we all avoided the military convoys, it will greatly hinder any movement towards a proper democracy and you and I will be the worse for it.