Contempt: IGP Files Motion To Set Aside Court Ruling
The Inspector-General of Police, IGP, Usman Alkali Baba has approached the Federal High Court in Abuja and filed a motion to set aside the contempt proceeding and committal order against him.
TalkGlitz had reported on November 29 that a federal high court in Abuja had sentenced the IGP to three months in prison for disobeying a court order.
The presiding judge, Mobolaji Olajuwon, issued the ruling following a suit filed by Patrick Okoli, a former police officer who claims he was unlawfully and compulsorily retired from the Nigerian police force.
In the motion filed on Thursday, Baba highlighted extensively grounds why the orders should be set aside.
He said he had not been appointed into office as Inspector-General of Police when the case was instituted and the reinstatement order in question granted.
He also affirmed that the contempt proceedings were served via substituted means in November 2018 and January 2019, respectively, on the then Inspector-General of Police and not on him as the incumbent.
“The IGP in his disposition further noted that even before his assumption of Office, official steps had been taken by his predecessors toward complying with the reinstatement of Patrick C. Okoli, the plaintiff, as ordered by the Court”, the statement said.
“As noted by him, this was evidenced by an official letter addressed to the Police Service Commission on the approval of the then Inspector General of Police, as far back as 2015, and before the court order of November 29th, 2022, requesting the Commission to issue a reinstatement letter to the plaintiff and also affect his promotion in line with the order of the Court and in the exercise of their statutory authority in that regard.
“Hence, the grounds for the contempt proceedings ought not to have existed, ab initio.
“Hence, the grounds for the contempt proceedings ought not to have existed, ab initio. The IGP reassures Nigerians of his unalloyed commitment and steadfastness in defending the rule of law and respecting judicial authorities and hence, will not wittingly or unwittingly disobey any order validly granted by courts of competent jurisdiction.”