Magodo Debacle: Sanwo-Olu Knows Police Is Answerable To IGP, Shouldn’t Have Confronted CSP – Adegboruwa

Magodo Debacle: Sanwo-Olu Knows Police Is Answerable To IGP, Shouldn’t Have Confronted CSP – Adegboruwa

Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) has said that the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, should not have openly confronted a Chief Superintendent of Police at the Magodo Phase 2 Estate area of the state because of constitutional limitations.

The senior lawyer also added that the encounter between the Sanwo-Olu and the police officer was a clarion call to the need for restructuring and state policing.

The Street Journal earlier reported how the CSP, Abimbola Oyewole, on Tuesday openly defied Sanwo-Olu’s order to vacate Magodo Phase 2 Estate.

The CSP told the governor that he and his armed colleagues were at the estate on the orders of the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba; as well as the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN).

In a reaction to the incident, Adegboruwa told Punch that Sanwo-Olu was not well-advised and should not have made such public appeal to sentiments knowing that the police were not under his control.

The senior lawyer said, “In a federation, the governor should have complete territorial control of the state where he has been elected to govern.

“The difference between the governor and the Chief Superintendent of Police is in the mandate of the people; the governor was elected as the representative of the people whereas the police officer is part of the servant and people who serve the collective aspirations of our people.

“To that extent, it should not have been openly possible for us to have a situation where in the public glare the police defy the chief public officer of the state.

“I believe that the governor was not well-advised to embark on open confrontation with the police knowing the constitutional limitations that hinder his directives or operational instructions to police officers who are not directly under him.

“There should have been caution on both sides; there ought not to have been an open confrontation between the governor and the police because these are issues we have known since 1999 that the constitution has more or less stripped the governors of any powers in terms of control of security.

“So, to make such appeals to sentiments was not totally commended on the part of his excellency, with all due respect.

“But having said that, it addresses the need for us to rejig the constitution and work out a proper Federation. I do not support in any case that the governor should be helpless in containing crisis in a state.”

“The 1999 Constitution tells a lie against the people of Nigeria when it claims that we are running a Federation but strips the Governor of a State of powers over security.

“In the final analysis, only restructuring can save this nation. Those who make peaceful change impossible make violent change inevitable,” he added.

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