- Nigeria's senior lawyer on Thursday, January 16, petitioned the Attorney General of the Federation against the invasion of Peace Corps office in Ondo by the Police
- Kanu Agabi said urged the AGF to prevail on the Nigeria Police to obey court orders over the sealing of the Peace Corps office in Abuja
- Agabi warned that there are unprovoked and unwarranted action by the Police against the youth organisation despite several court judgments in favour of the PCN
A senior advocate of Nigeria, Kanu Agabi, has petitioned the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, to prevail on the Nigeria Police to obey court orders over the sealing of the Peace Corps office in Abuja.
The senior lawyer in a letter dated Thursday, January 16, told Malami that despite subsisting judgements and orders from various courts which were never upturned or appealed against, the Nigeria Police, through the Ondo state commissioner, CP Undie Adie, on Monday, January 13, arrested the Ondo state Commandant of the Corps.
He said that the corps commandant, Lukeman Oluwatobi, who was said to be at the CP's office on a scheduled courtesy visit, alongside other affiliate bodies of the National Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN), the apex youth body in the country.
According to Agabi, the said the essence of visiting the commissioner of Police is to exploit ways of how the youth leaders could complement the effort of the Police in curtaining the crime situation in the country.
Agabi said the NYCN's leader on visiting the Ondo state Police command, introduced his client's commandant, Lukeman Oluwatobi as a member of the delegation.
He said at the instance, the commissioner of Police in the state instantly reacted by declaring that his Peace Corp is illegal and that there is an existing circular to that effect from his Force Headquarters.
Agabi said the Police commissioner immediately ordered the detention of the commandant while officers of the Force invaded the PCN office at No 68 General Bajowa street, along Royal Bird Hotel, Leonard junction, Alagbaka, Akure.
Noting that the officer heavily armed in the process brutalized, molested and arrested some members of the Corps, Agabi said some valued items including the PCN's flag were carted away with and the office sealed.
He added that since then, a number of police officers have constantly been keeping vigils at the premises till date.
He warned that the unprovoked and unwarranted act happened few days after the inspector general of Police, Muhammed Adamu, at the annual conference of the Police lawyers held at Force Headquarters Abuja warned of the increasing judgment debts against the Police.
He recalled that the IGP had asked the Police lawyers to ensure at all times that court orders are obeyed and enforced and that constitutional safeguards of both the suspect and citizen are protected.
Noting that by sealing off the PCN's office in Ondo, the Police have violated the right of the organisation, which enjoys consultative status with the United Nations (UN) and the African Union (AU), to acquire and own immovable property and disrupted its lawful activities, Agabi reminded Malami of the continuous blockage of the national secretariat of PCN, Abuja, by the Police since February 2017, despite two court orders and the resolution of the House of Representatives in 2018, that the Police should vacate the premises.
Agabi in the 7-page petition annexed with various court judgements delivered in favour of PCN and other documents to proof that the Corps was a legal entity; also copied to the Force Headquarters, the Human Rights Commission and the Department of Public Prosecution, Federal Ministry of Justice.
Also, Malami had in March 2018, written to the former IGP Ibrahim Idris, urging him to unseal the PCN office in Abuja since there are no pending appeal against the orders but the Police refused to honour the directives of the AGF.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that a Federal High court sitting in Abuja had ruled that the PCN is a legal entity.
The court in its judgement ruled that the PCN is a lawfully registered organization that has the rights to carry out its programs in the country
The judgement was delivered 24 hours after the House of Representatives threw out the PCN bill - The court.
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