Lawyers Castigate Role Of Judiciary In Odili’s House Raid
Lawyers have condemned the roles of the judiciary and law enforcement officers in the raid on the residence of Justice Mary Odili.
Recall that Odili’s residence was on October 29 invaded by armed security operatives for reasons yet to be ascertained.
Although, The Punch had on Sunday, reported that a fake police officer, Lawrence Ajodo, and 13 others had been arrested for laying siege to the Abuja residence of Odili.
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Ifedayo Adedipe, in an interview with our correspondent, said, “The affidavit before the Magistrate that issued that order should have alerted him that something was wrong. Therefore, the magistrate has not shown adequate knowledge of the law in issuing that order on the basis of the nebulous affidavit that was presented to him.
“If the Inspector General of Police claims to have arrested those fake officers, then let him make public the findings so that we will know who initiated the whole process, the basis for the initiation, and the authority they have to raid the home of a Justice of the Supreme Court.
“There is more to this raid than meets the ordinary eye. Something is indeed wrong with our society and the Nigerian system.
“As for the lawyers, we do not know whether any lawyer was involved. When the former Chief Justice of Nigeria was removed, there was an ex parte application that no lawyer signed which the Code of Conduct relied upon. To date, nothing has been done about it.
“If we could allow that incident to be swept under the carpet, then why should this one be any different? If a process comes before a court without a lawyer’s name, no judge or magistrate should have acted on it.”
Another legal practitioner, Ige Asemudarai, said it was good that the fake policemen involved in the raid had been arrested.
He said, “As for who is to be blamed, I must state clearly, it is the system that should be blamed. It has produced lawyers without ethics and thrown up magistrates without knowledge and without conscience. This same system has produced very unprofessional and corrupt policemen and officers.
“The system has jettisoned due process and has made impunity the order of the day. The institutions are not working, some have completely failed. For instance, what is the Federal Capital Territory Judicial Service Commission doing about the magistrate who granted a search warrant on premises whose residents are unknown and on terse facts as to what informed the warrant?”
“Now, how did the Supreme Court react to similar incidents in the past? How has the judiciary promptly reacted to the unlawful invasion of the privacy of ordinary citizens in the past? What has the National Assembly done to checkmate the embarrassing governance of this country by the Buhari administration?
Asemuadarai added that this government would go down in history as the worst government in all parameters because it has disgraced all the virtues of the rule of law and has distorted everything.