The Benue state commissioner for Arts and Culture, Honourable Sekav Dzua Iortyom, has been sent to prison by a Chief Magistrates’ Court sitting in Makurdi. Tribune reports that the commissioner reportedly jumped police bail in October, 2016. He was arrested shortly after attending an emergency state executive council meeting at the Government House, on Monday, November 28 and charged for criminal conspiracy, culpable homicide and failure in obedience to an order the next day.
The report said Iortyom was among some others charged for the murder of a lecturer, Mr Aondosoo Tondo of the University of Mkar. Quoting the First Information Report (FIR), the report said the commissioner was named in the death of the lecturer killed on August 11, 2016. After an initial interrogation by the police, he was granted an administrative bail which he jumped. The report said when the case came up, the defense counsel, Mr Christian Teeve, entered an oral plea for the bail of the accused but this was opposed by the prosecuting officer, Inspector Gabriel Agbadu, who argued that investigations were still ongoing on the matter. In his ruling, the presiding chief magistrate, Mrs Felicia Ikyegh, said the plea should be written. She also ordered that the commissioner be remanded at the Makurdi medium prison. She adjourned the matter to February 9, 2017.