By Ebi Kesiena
A Former Edo State Commissioner for Arts, Culture and Diaspora Affairs, Hon. Osaze Osemwegie-Ero, has lamented that over 300 Nigerians are said to be Languishing in Italian prisons for alleged crimes with no evidence of proof of guilt.
He disclosed this during a visit to the Chairman/CEO, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM) Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa at her office in Abuja, recently.
Osaze who spent 18 months in Italian prison for an offence he claimed not to have committed, stated that his case was as a result of racial discrimination and manipulation of the Italian justice system, and not the offence that was alleged against him.
“I was alleged a Mafia kingpin and on that course was detained, upon demand for an evidence, a manual called the ‘Green Bible’ was presented which was obviously forged,” he said.
According to Osaze, some Nigerians have been sentenced to 140 years imprisonment for the same Nigerian mafia accusation, citing article 416b of Italian Mafia law.
The former commissioner noted that he has structured out plans to lead a peaceful protest for the release of other innocent Nigerians illegally detained in Italian prisons, seeking the Federal Government’s intervention.
Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa empathized with Mr Osemwegie-Ero on his ordeal and assured that justice will be served for others who are wrongly accused.
The NiDCOM boss further gave assurances that no Nigerian will be punished for an unjust cause.
She however stated that the Commission will take the case up to the office of the Attorney General, as the numbers are alarming, adding that the Attorney General has handled several cases of such with the commission.