By Ayorinde Oluokun/Abuja
Mr Danladi Umar, the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), said persons who attacked him after his recent altercations with a security guard at Banex Plaza, Abuja were chanting “secessionist and sectional slogans.”
A viral video had shown Mr Umar assaulting a security guard who had advised him to park his vehicle properly at the Plaza.
However, his action boomeranged as other persons in the Plaza rose in defence of the security guard and attacked him in return.
The CCT Chairman was later rescued from the scene by the police.
There have been calls for removal of the CCT chairman for disgracing his office by engaging in public brawl by a cross section of Nigerians.
Mr. Umar has also come under criticism for allegedly instructing the spokesperson of CCT to refer to those who attacked him as ‘Biafran boys’ in a statement released on the incident.
Activist and lawyer, Femi Falana in a statement on Saturday said the ‘Biafran boys’ comment can lead to criminal prosecution of the CCT Chairman.
However, while speaking to PRNigeria, Danladi Umar did not deny instructing the CCT spokesperson to use ‘Biafran boys’ to describe those who attacked him at Banex plaza.
But in a seeming justification of the use of the term, Umar said he was attacked and injured by a mob that was “chanting secessionist and sectional slogans,” during the incident at the Plaza.
He also said that contrary to insinuations, he had no bodyguard or police escort when he visited the Plaza.
He said: “As part of my routine activities outside the office and official duties, like any regular Nigerian, I always drive myself and move around freely to places of worship, markets and gyms, among others, without any paraphernalia of office.
“I enjoy such freedom being a believer that one day one would leave whatever office one occupies and returning to living the normal life.
“Therefore, when I was accosted by the Plaza guard in a very rude manner on arriving there, I had maintained my accustomed decorum before I was drawn into an unnecessary altercation and subsequently assaulted, with this degenerating into an attack and injury by a mob that was chanting secessionist and sectional slogans.”
The Chairman said the video shared on social media captured only an aspect of what ensued and not the beginning where he was molested.
“Since the incident, which left me traumatised after being bruised and treated in the hospital, I have had cause to reflect on the sad course of the incident and I regret being drawn into responding to the situation. This makes me both upset at being cast in a distorted and unfortunate light, while I also have cause to feel deep pains for subsequent response and controversies.
“All said, with an apology tendered to me by one of the suspected aggressors, I believe that the entire incident was avoidable, just as I feel highly disappointed that my action in the public glare in a very brief moment has been misconstrued in the narrative floating across social media.