Former aides to the immediate past Governor of Benue state, Mr Gabriel Suswam have dragged the Nigeria Police to court claiming N500m for alleged illegal detention.
The aides also are before the court with a motion on notice praying the court for an interlocutory injunction restraining the police and other delegated authorities under same force from further, “harassment, invitation, arrest, detention and obtaining statements from them”.
It would be recalled that recently, the Commissioner of police, Benue Command, Bashir Makama confirmed arrest of about eight former aides to Suswam by his men and detained in Makurdi for few days, but the eight accused were later moved to Abuja where two of their colleagues including the former Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Omadachi Oklobia, Special Adviser on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affair, Prince Solomon Wombo were already been held, allegedly detained and interrogated to answer allegations of corruption leveled against them by the present administration in the state led by Samuel Ortom.
But in suit number FHC/ABJ/05/704/201 filed on the 9th Sept 2016, the aides, through their counsels led by Innocent Daa’gba, A J Mbatsavdue are contending amongst other issues that the report of Justice Kpojime Probe panel which the police “Special Investigation Panel” set up by the Inspector General of Police based its findings upon to arrest, detained and extracted statements from them was still been challenged by them at a court of competent jurisdiction in Makurdi, the Benue state capital.
A member of the team of lawyers who spoke to our correspondent in Makurdi but preferred not to be named since he said he was not the senior counsel and was not actually permitted to grant any press interview said another ground they are contending is whether the IG under the Public act cap p 19 LFN 2004, Section 315 of the police regulation cap p19 LFN 2004 and the Nigerian Constitution 1999 as amended section 216 (1) has such powers to without the written consent of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as stipulated Section 11 of the Police cap P 19 LFN 2004 “lawfully delegate” his duties to a civilian to act on his behalf as well as the powers to re – investigate reports of a properly constituted judicial commission of inquiry reports that indict certain persons which Government also issued a white paper.
Governor Ortom recently confirmed in Makurdi that he had forwarded a petition to the IG, Economic, Finance Crimes Commission ( EFCC ) and the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission ( ICPC ) urging the various bodies to investigate his predecessor, Gabriel Suswam based on a probe panel that indicted him and 51 others of embezzling and misappropriation of N107bn.