Timi Frank petitions IGP against Sylva, raises alarm over threats to life


On Wednesday, Timi Frank, a former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), lodged a petition with the Inspector-General of Police, Olukayode Egbetotkun, expressing concern about alleged threats to his life by former Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva.

The petition, dated June 27 and titled “Incessant threats to life of Comrade Timi Frank,” implores the IGP, Nigerians, and the international community to hold Mr. Sylva accountable if any harm befalls Frank in the near future.

The petition, submitted by Frank’s legal counsel, Edward Omaga of GRAYLAW Practice LP, Abuja, alleges acts committed by Chief Timipre Sylva, including identity theft, impersonation, forgery of academic certificates, and providing false evidence. These acts are said to contravene Section 486 of the Criminal Code Act, CAP C38 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004, in conjunction with Sections 366, 364, and 158 (2) of the Penal Code Act, CAP 532 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (Abuja) 1990.\

According to the petition, which refers to a previous petition dated May 22, 2023, and received at the former office of the Force Criminal Intelligence and Investigation Department (FCIID) of the Nigeria Police Force, Chief Timipre Sylva is accused of threatening the life of Timi Frank in response to Frank’s exposure of alleged irregularities in Sylva’s academic certificates.

Timi Frank, the petitioner, reportedly received a distress call informing him that Sylva, the former Minister of Petroleum Resources and the All Progressives Congress (APC) flagbearer in the forthcoming Bayelsa State Governorship Election on November 14, 2023, has made active plans to hunt him down both within and outside Nigeria.

The petition claims that Sylva has shared these plans with his close aides and associates, some of whom have anonymously cautioned Frank to be careful. According to reliable information received by Frank, Sylva is allegedly funding a dangerous squad tasked with monitoring Frank’s residences in Accra and Dubai with the intention of eliminating him.

“Sir, it is important that you handle this alarm about threat to the life of our client with utmost seriousness because Chief Timipre Sylva is a man known to be associated with cultists and other deadly squads ready to carry out any order at his behest.

The petition further highlights a previous incident involving Chief Timipre Sylva, where he was allegedly involved in orchestrating an attempt to harm and kidnap Senator Adams Oshiomhole during the APC primaries in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State in 2015. It is claimed that Sylva hired thugs to disrupt the primaries and that Senator Oshiomhole narrowly escaped harm.

The petitioner’s lawyer emphasizes that Timi Frank’s actions in exposing corrupt and fraudulent activities of public officers should not be considered an offense in a democratic country like Nigeria. They call on the Inspector General of Police to take urgent action to protect Timi Frank’s life, invoking the statutory duties outlined in Section 4 of the Police Act, 2020.

The lawyer expresses confidence in the Inspector General’s competence and integrity and urges him to ensure that criminality will no longer thrive in Nigeria, providing assurance to local and international observers.

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