Wednesday 5 August 2015

IGP Confirms Forgery Of Senate Rules, Says Saraki, Ekeremadu Have No Immunity

The Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr. Solomon Arase, on Tuesday, dismissed a suit filed by Senator Gilbert Nnaji (PDP/Enugu East), seeking to stop the police from investigating the alleged forgery of the 2015 Senate Standing Order, as ridiculous, laughable and mere waste of time of the court.

The Senate Rules being investigated by the police was allegedly used for the election of the leadership of the 8th National Assembly, which produced Senators Bukola Saraki and Ike Ekweremadu as Senate President and Deputy Senate President respectively.

The IGP, while responding to the suit, on Tuesday, through a counter-affidavit, said no court of law in country has powers to stop the force from performing its statutory functions of investigating crimes.

He said nobody in the country, including the 74 political office holders covered by provision of section 308 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), is immune from investigation.

Aresa argued that the principal officers of the Senate have no constitutional or statutory immunity from investigation.

The police boss urged the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, to dismiss the suit for want of jurisdiction, adding that investigating the allegation of forgery in the Senate could only strengthen the integrity of the upper legislative house and its leadership.

The police, while confirming the Senate Standing Order 2015 (as amended) was forged, said in its counter affidavit: “The present Senate has not enacted any standing orders yet.

“As at the time of inauguration of this present Senate, no standing orders had been made.
“Till date, no such standing orders have so far been made.

“The practice is that at inauguration, the incoming Senate uses the standing orders of the preceding Senate. The immediate past Senate did not amend the 2011 standing orders and the 2011 standing orders have not yet been amended.”

The document, which was deposed to by Joshua Yohanna, of the Legal/ Prosecution department, Force CIID, further averred as follows:

“I know that the plaintiff cannot prove that the so called 2015 standing orders were passed by the preceding Senate. “That the so called 2015 standing orders were never made nor passed by the immediate past Senate.

It said plaintiff knows that the present Senate leadership was not in a position to have passed the 2015 Senate Standing orders before its inauguration.

“The plaintiff knows that it is only after inauguration that the current Senate could pass the Senate standing orders.
“That what he is bandying about is not an authorised Senate standing order.”

The police then urged Justice Gabriel Kolawole, who was the presiding judge, to throw out the suit as it simply constituted a nuisance.

It argued that the matter at hand raise issues of criminality and the police owe Nigerians the duty to unearth the truth behind the allegations of forgery.

The police stated that every Nigerian citizen could be investigated for crime as there is no immunity against investigation in all civilized countries, Nigeria inclusive.

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