The attorney representing the Ombatse group in the ongoing judicial commission of inquiry, Zachary Zamani Alumaga, has faulted the panel for delving into constitutional matters that are outside its jurisdiction.
Alumaga who made this observation at the inaugural public sitting of the commission at the Chief Magistrate Court 2, Lafia said the commission does not have any right under the law to use Law Number 4 of Nasarawa State Penal Code and the Penal law of Northern Nigeria.
The lawyer said that the commission can only use the Judicial Commission law in it’s proceedings.
“The making of a law like this has procedure. You have to set up a district judge or justice of the people to look into the problems of the people, agree and make recommendation. It is on the basis of that, that the governor can make this law,” he explained.
He submitted further: “The penal code that this commission has been asked to use, in the law itself the executor is the district judge or magistrate. If this commission uses that law i want to ask with what power, if not the powers of the district judge. Or is it by mere fact that you are a commission that you now assume other powers?”
Responding to the argument, another lawyer at the sitting, MusaAloko, said Alumaga was jumping the gun and acting faster than the proceedings of the commission.
He advised the Ombatse counsel to allow the proceeding to progress and as he could present his objections later.
Earlier, the chairman of the commission retired Justice Joseph FolaGbadeyan, while declaring the session open, said that members of the commission will do their best in carrying out the task before them in the spirit of fairness equity and openness.
He called on all and sundry to give them the maximum support needed while also appealing to the media to report proceedings accurately and refrain from sensationalism in the course of the hearing.
The sitting was adjourned till Monday, July 22, to enable the commission create a time-table for the receiving of memoranda from members of the public.