Interpol Arrests Twitter User over Alleged Cybercrime

Nnamdi Chude

On March 18, 2023, Mr. Nnamdi Chude, a  Twitter user was arrested in Onitsha by Interpol’s Cyber Crime Unit in Anambra State. He was transported to Awka’s State Criminal Investigation Department where he was detained for alleged cybercrime and thereafter taken to Abuja the following day.

Nnamdi used his Twitter account to raise the alarm that thugs suspected to be affiliated with the ruling All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) in the state had reportedly entered certain polling units and stolen ballot boxes.

He expressed disappointment over the incident saying thugs disrupted the voting process in order to prevent APGA from losing the state assembly election to another party.

In the tweet, Chude said, “I can’t remember the last time I heard of ballot box snatching in Anambra, this is the height of it, @CCSoludo has taken us back to Mbadinuju’s era.”

The Nigeria Police, through its Twitter handle @PoliceNG on March 22 confirmed that. Chude Franklin Nnamdi with Twitter handle was arrested and that he is being investigated by the Nigeria Police Force National Cyber Crime Centre (NPF-NCCC) Abuja, for cyberstalking, pursuant to a complaint received via a petition, about his activities on social media which, according to the Police, contravenes the provision of Section 24 of the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, etc.) Act, 2015 and other criminal laws.

The series of tweets says further that a prima facie case has been established against him while the case file has been forwarded to the Force Legal Department for further action.

The Nigeria Police Force urged members of the public to familiarize themselves with the provisions of the law and be aware of the penalties for violating them most especially cybercrime laws with the new trends in the digital media space.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Court of Justice has actually ruled that section 24 of Nigeria’s Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, etc) Act, 2015 “is not in conformity with Articles 9 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).” The Court ordered Nigeria to repeal or amend the section, which it held to be in gross violation of the right to freedom of expression.