Imo State governor, Hope Uzodinma, has signed into law the Imo State Administration Of Criminal Justice Law No 2 of 2020 (ISACJL, 2020).
The law empowers the governor to arrest and detain any resident of the state for as long as he wishes.
According to section 484 of the law, any person detained on the orders of Uzodinma can only be released when he grants a license to the said individual.
It says: “Where any person is ordered to be detained during the governor’s pleasure he shall notwithstanding anything in this Law or in any other written law contained be liable to be detained in such place and under such conditions as the governor may direct and whilst so detained shall be deemed to be in legal custody.”
However, controversies had trailed the legality or otherwise of the provisions relating to the power conferred on the governor to detain suspects at his pleasure.
In addition, the law abolished all forms of a preliminary inquiry into a criminal charge by a magistrate or any court in the state and replaced them with the preparation of proof of evidence.