The hide and seek between the Senate and the Inspector General of Police Ibrahim Idris has taken a legal dimension with a suit by the latter challenging his summons by the Senate.
In a suit marked FHC/ABJ/ CS/ 457/2018, the police boss is seeking an injunctive order of the Abuja division of the Federal High Court restraining the Senate and Senate President Bukola Saraki of their assigns, agents or any committees from insisting that he must appear before the upper legislative chambers in person, to the exclusion of any of his subordinate officers.
On why he could not honour the Senate invitation in person, the IGP said he had been directed by the President to be among the presidential entourage embarking on a two day official trip to Bauchi State and therefore on the said April 26, 2018, he was in Bauchi State on assignment.
“That as a result of the above development, he then directed and delegated the Deputy Inspector General of Police, Operations, an Assistant Inspector General of Police and the Commissioner of Police, Kogi State, who had adequate knowledge of the two subject matters which the Senate required briefing, to appear before the Senate on April 26, 2018 on his behalf.” the suit explained.
However, the plaintiff told the court that the Senate refused the appearance of the aforesaid officers.
Besides, the Inspector General of Police in the suit filed by his counsel, Dr. Alex Izinyon, urged the court to declare that the letters inviting him by the Senate dated April 25, 2018 and April 26, 2018, relating to pending criminal proceedings against Senator Dino Melaye in court of law is beyond its powers under section 88 of the 1999 Constitution and same is contrary to the Senate Standing Order, 2015, and the provision of section 6(6) (b) of the 1999 Constitution, and, therefore null, void and of no effect.
In an 11-paragraph affidavit in support to the suit, the IGP said in the letter dated April 26, 2018, with the heading “Invitation to brief the Senate on the inhuman treatment of Senator Dino Melaye over a matter that is pending in Court,” it clearly showed that the Senate is aware that the said Senator Dino Melaye is facing criminal charge in a court of law and that he is not answerable to the Senate but to the Judicial Arm of Government trying the matter.
The deponent, Lukman Fagbemi, averred that the said Senator Dino Melaye is facing a charge of criminal conspiracy and illegal possession of firearms before a court of competent jurisdiction in Kogi State.
Citing the case law in IGP vs. Kabiru Seidu, aka Osama & 3 ors, the plaintiff argued that once the charge is before a court of competent jurisdiction, it is only the Judicial Arm of Government that adjudicates and disposes of the matter one way or the other and not subject to oversight functions of the Senate under section 88 of the 1999 Constitution, as claimed by the Senate.
He further argued that the Chapter Viii Rule 53 (5) of the Senate Standing Order prohibits any reference to any matter in which any judicial decision is pending, in this case the charge before the court in Lokoja, Kogi State is still pending.
In addition, the police boss submitted that there is no where the discussion on Dino Melaye’s case by the Senate will not relate to or impact on the matter in court.
That under the 1999 Constitution, and the Police Act, the holder of his office (IGP), can delegate or direct the carrying out of its functions by the Deputy Inspector General of Police, Assistant Inspector General of Police and Commissioner of Police.
In an originating summons dated April 30, 2018, the IGP posed five questions for the determination of the court, including the following:
- Whether the letters dated April 25 and 26, 2018 by the 1st and 2nd defendants (Senate and Senate President) to the plaintiff to appear before it on 26th April, 2018 and 2nd May, 2018 or any other date do not relate to the office of the plaintiff by virtue of section 215 (1) (a) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999.
He sought seven declarative reliefs from the court, should the questions be answered in his favour.
Meanwhile, the legal team to the Senate President in a counter affidavit accused the IGP of using the court to avoid honouring his invitation.
Age Falsification: ICPC arraigns ex-border agency boss
A former Acting Executive Secretary of the Border Communities Development Agency (BCDA), Mrs. Victoria Olutayo Odumosu, has been arraigned by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) for age falsification.
ICPC spokesperson, Rasheedat Okoduwa in a statement on Thursday said Odumosu was arraigned before Justice Olasumbo Goodluck of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Maitama on a five-count charge bordering on conferring corrupt advantage upon herself as a public officer in order to keep herself in public service beyond the statutory retirement age.
Okoduwa said Odumosu was alleged to have changed her date of birth on the agency’s nominal roll from 6th July, 1956 to 6th July, 1960, when she was made the head of Human Resources Department of the agency, contrary to Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.
She added that this fact was unearthed by ICPC after it launched an investigation into allegations contained in a petition it had received against the accused person.
She added that Odumosu pleaded not guilty to all the charges preferred against her when they were read out to her, Counsel to the accused person, Sayo Odumosu, through a written application, sought the relief of the court to grant his client bail.
Justice Goodluck then adjourned the case to Friday 19th October, 2018 for bail hearing, while the suspect has been remanded in ICPC custody, the ICPC statement.
Guild of Corporate Online Publishers holds second annual conference in Lagos
The Guild of Corporate Online Publishers (GOCOP) has concluded arrangements for its second annual conference holding on Friday, October 19, 2019 at Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos State.
A statement released in Lagos on Wednesday by GOCOP Publicity Secretary, Olumide Iyanda, confirmed that the theme of the conference is “Online Publishers’ Role Towards a Sustainable Economy, Credible Election and Security in Nigeria.”
Former Governor of Ogun State, Aremo Olusegun Osoba (CON), has confirmed his presence as chairman of the event.
“Aremo Osoba’s choice as chairman is informed by his enviable profile as a journalist, elder statesman and peace advocate.
“He brings in a wealth of experience as former Managing Director of Daily Times Nigeria Limited, Governor of Ogun State and member of the Nigerian Constituent Assembly, among others,” the statement said.
Former Chairman of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and Senior Team Manager for the Africa Program of the Open Society Justice Initiative, Prof. Chidi Odinkalu, has also confirmed his presence as the guest speaker.
“Recognised globally as an authority in international law, international economic and human rights law, public policy and political economy, Prof Odinkalu’s presentation will provide a clear roadmap for the media and other critical stakeholders in the Nigerian projects,” the statement added.
Chairman, Centre of Excellence in Multimedia Technology, Department of Mass Communication, University of Lagos, Prof. Ralph Akinfeleye; and former Director, ICT Centre, Federal University, Otuoke, Bayelsa State, Prof. Leonard Shilgba, will be the discussants.
The Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN), Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON), Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE), Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) and other stakeholder groups in the media will be represented at the conference.
GOCOP represents media organisations registered in Nigeria with promoters drawn from practitioners who have served at senior levels in the profession.
Shekarau back in Court over N900m money laundering charges
The Federal High Court sitting in Kano on Thursday adjourned the case of alleged money laundering against former governor of Kano State, Ibrahim Shekarau.
Shekarau was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) alongside former external affairs minister Aminu Wali and one Mansur Ahmad on a six-count charge bordering on conspiracy and money laundering to the tune of N950 million.
When the case came up for hearing, the Judge, Justice Lewis Allagoa, who has just assumed duty at the Court, adjourned the trial till Nov. 19, 20, and 21, 2018.
The judge replaced Justice Zainab Bage who was transferred.
Counsel to the EFCC, Mr Johnson Ojogbane, had earlier told the court that the defendants, between March 26 and 27, 2015, conspired among themselves and received the said amount without going through financial institutions.
He said that the money was issued to the defendants by the Peoples Democratic Party and former petroleum minister Diezani Allison-Madueke.
The prosecutor said that the offences contravened sections 18 (a) of the Money Laundering (prohibition) Act 2011 as amended and punishable under section 16 (2)(b) of the same Act and Section 15(1) of money laundering Act.
The trio had pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Before the adjournment, the defense counsel, Mr Jibrin Okutekpa (SAN) prayed that the court to extend the bail granted to his clients by the former judge in line with Section 163 of the Criminal Justice Act 2015.
The judge acceded to the request to extend the bail before adjourning to Nov. 19, 201 and 21 for continuation of the trial.
NAN recalls that Bage had granted the defendants bail in the sum of N100 million each with two reliable sureties in like sum.