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Court summons Ogun legislature over ex-OPIC boss, Olukolu

A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Monday have summoned the House of Assembly of Ogun State, OGHA, to show cause within seven days, why the Assembly should not be restrained from proceeding with the case of or setting the law against the former Managing Director of Ogun State Property Investment Corporation, OPIC, Mr. Jide Odusolu.

Justice Peter Lifu made the order sequel to a motion moved by Odusolu’s counsel Mr Adetunji Adedoyin-Adeniyi. During proceedings on Monday Adetunji appeared for Mr Babajide Odusolu in Court and argued vehemently why the court should grant the interim reliefs contained in the Motion exparte, but the court in his wisdom, ordered the Respondents, which are IG, DIG, AIG, Ogun State House of Assembly and the Clerk to show cause upon being served with the order and the court, why they should not be restrained Vis-a-vis the grant of the motion exparte for interim reliefs filed by Mr Babajide Odusolu.

It will be recalled that Ogun State House of Assembly, during its plenary proceedings on September 21, 2012, had purported to adopt the report of its Committee on Anti-Corruption and Public Accounts, which claimed to have investigated the finances of OPIC and huge sums of money are missing from OPIC accounts.

Mr. Odusolu had filed a suit  before the Federal High Court, against the Inspector-General of Police, the Assistant Inspector-General of Police in charge of Zone 2, the Commissioner of Police in Ogun State and the Ogun State House of Assembly as respondents.

Among others Odusolu is seeking a declarations that the proceedings of OGHA and the report of the Committee which it purportedly adopted constitute an infringement on his fundamental right to fair hearing, that Ogun State House of Assembly lacks the competence to investigate alleged crime, that the Chairman of the Committee that purported to investigate OPIC funds was himself an interested party who served together with Mr. Odusolu in the previous administration and even inspected some OPIC projects which he now claims have not been executed. Mr. Odusolu also sought an order of injunction to restrain the Assembly from deploying the report to initiate any criminal complaint against him before the police and to restrain the police from acting on the said report pending the hearing and final determination of the suit pending in court.

In a 40 paragraph affidavit deposed to by Mr. Odusolu himself, he traced the series of projects executed by OPIC, that the accounts of OPIC have been audited by professionals and no fund is missing at all. He stated further that he was being persecuted by the Committee and some Assembly members.

The reliefs sought in the case by Mr. Odusolu are as follows:

“A DECLARATION that the Applicant is entitled to his liberty and freedom to move freely, within Lagos State or any part of Nigeria, without let or hindrance from the Respondents, their servants, agents, officers or otherwise howsoever in exercise of the Applicant’s fundamental rights guaranteed under sections 35 and 41 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 and Articles 6 and 12 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act, Cap. 10, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

A DECLARATION that the 1st-3rdRespondents are not entitled to invite, arrest, detain or in any other manner hinder the free movement and exercise of liberty by the Applicant on account of the report and decision of the 4th Respondent in flagrant violation of the Applicant’s fundamental rights guaranteed under Sections 35, 36 and 41  of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Articles 6, 7 and 12 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

A DECLARATION that the Applicant is entitled to fair hearing in the determination of his civil rights and obligations by the Ogun State House of Assembly as enshrined under Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

A DECLARATION that the 4th Respondent is not empowered in law to conduct investigations on allegations of crime or to make findings and conclusions involving allegations of crime against the Applicant in flagrant violation of the Applicant’s fundamental rights guaranteed under Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and the investigations and reports of the 4th Respondent are therefore ultra vires, unconstitutional, null and void.

A DECLARATION that the decision and report of the 4th Respondent purportedly indicting the Applicant on allegations of fraud and/or misappropriation of funds, constitute a flagrant violation of the Applicant’s fundamental rights guaranteed under Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and are therefore unconstitutional, null and void.

A DECLARATION that the procedure adopted by the 4th Respondent leading to its report and decision against the Applicant constitutes a flagrant violation of the Applicant’s fundamental rights guaranteed under Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and is therefore unconstitutional, null and void.

A DECLARATION that the decisions taken by the 4th Respondent in the determination of the civil rights and obligations of the Applicant in respect of an indictment on fraud and/or misappropriation of funds constitute flagrant violation of the Applicant’s fundamental rights guaranteed under Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and are therefore unconstitutional, null, void and of no effect whatsoever.

A DECLARATION that the 4th Respondent is not entitled to deploy or use its decisions and reports against the Applicant to instigate or set the 1st-3rd Respondents, or any other law enforcement agency, against the Applicant in violation of the Applicant’s fundamental rights guaranteed under Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

A DECLARATION that the 1st-3rdRespondents, their privies, agents, or servants howsoever are not entitled to act upon or use the report and decision of the 4th Respondent purportedly indicting the Applicant in violation of his fundamental rights guaranteed under Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

AN ORDER nullifying, annulling, invalidating and setting aside the report, decisions and conclusions of the 4th Respondent made against the Applicant and in particular the proceedings of the 4th Respondent of 17thSeptember, 2021.

AN INJUNCTION restraining the 4thRespondent from deploying or using its report and decision against the Applicant to instigate or set the 1st-3rd Respondents, or any other law enforcement agency, against the Applicant in violation of the Applicant’s fundamental rights guaranteed under Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

AN INJUNCTION restraining the 1st-3rdRespondents from implementing, using and/ or deploying or giving effect howsoever to the report and decision of the 4th Respondent against the Applicant in any manner that may constitute a flagrant violation of the Applicant’s fundamental rights guaranteed under Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Article 7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

AN INJUNCTION restraining the 1st-3rdRespondents from inviting, arresting, detaining or in any other manner hindering the full exercise of the Applicant’s personal liberty and fundamental rights as guaranteed under Sections 35, 36 and 41 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Articles 6, 7 and 12 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 in relation to or enforcement of the report/decision of the 4thRespondent purportedly indicting the Applicant.

TEN BILLION NAIRA being general, punitive and aggravated damages against the Ogun State House of Assembly for the violation of the Applicant’s fundamental rights.

The case is adjourned to November 1, 2021, for hearing.

 

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