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ENDSARS: IGP files suit to stop ongoing state judicial panels on police brutality

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WITH over 1000 filed petitions by victims of police brutality, the Inspector General of Police, Muhammad Adamu is reportedly seeking a court order to stop the ongoing state judicial panel.

According to a report by The Punch, the police filed the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1492/2020i n a federal high court sitting in Abuja on Thursday.

The Nigeria police is seeking the court to restrain the Attorneys-General of the 36 states in the country and their various panels of enquiry from continuing with the probe into alleged police misconduct.

O. M Atoyebi, counsel to the Nigeria police told the court that state governments are not provisioned to constitute panels to investigate activities of the police force or its officials.

Atoyebi said that the state panels have violated the provisions of section 241(1)(2)(a) and Item 45, Part 1, First Schedule to the Constitution and Section 21 of the Tribunals of Inquiry Act

“The establishment of a panel of enquiries by the governors of the various states of the federation of Nigeria, to inquire into the activities of the Nigeria Police Force in relation to the discharge of her statutory duties is a gross violation of the provisions of Section 241 (1)(2) (a) and Item 45, Part 1, First schedule, 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Section 21 of the Tribunals of Inquiry Act, Cap.T21, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004,” the suit read.

The police prayed the court to declare the actions of the governors of the states over the panel as unconstitutional, illegal, null and void and of no effect whatsoever.

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Furthermore, Atoyebi sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining the state Attorneys-General of the 36 states from making or conducting any investigations, sittings, and inquiries in connection with the Nigeria Police force or its officials.

Following a protest that lasted many days and nights across various Nigerian states against police brutality and misconducts, the Federal government during the National Economic Council (NEC) meeting held on Thursday, October 16, ordered the establishment of Judicial panels of inquiry across the 36 states of the country.

According to the government, the judicial panel is part of efforts in fulfilling some of the demands by the Nigerian youths.

The panel is set up to investigate the police misconduct, illegal killings among others.

Since the establishment of the panels, Nigerians across 30 states have told sad stories of how they have been cheated, illegally detained or molested by men of the Nigerian police.

From the murder of a 3-day old daughter by police in Rivers state; to the killing of the only son of an old man in Anambra state by those who are to protected them, many petitioners told their sad stories across the states.

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Lukman Abolade is an Investigative reporter with The ICIR. Reach out to him via labolade@icirnigeria.org, on twitter @AboladeLAA and FB @Correction94

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