Court Jails IGP For 3 Months For Disobeying Order

Justice Mobolaji Olajuwon of the Federal High Court in Abuja, on Tuesday, sentenced the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba, to three months imprisonment for disobeying a 2011 court order.

Justice Olajuwon send the IGP to prison for flouting a 2011 judgment delivered in a suit filed by a police officer, Patrick Okoli over his unlawfully and compulsorily retirement from the Nigerian Police Force.

The judge held that Usman Baba should be committed to prison and detained for a period of three months, or until he obeys the order.

The court also ordered the payment of N10 million to the applicant, being special and general damages for the unlawful, illegal and unconstitutional denial of his (Patrick’s) rights and privileges as a Senior Officer of the Nigeria Police Force from 1993 till date.

The judge said, “It is unfortunate that the chief enforcer of the law is one who has deliberately refused to comply with the same law. It is important to state that obedience to orders of court is fundamental to the good order, peace and stability of a nation,” the judge held.

“It is a duty which every citizen, who believes in peace and stability of the Nigerian state, owes the nation and the court has a duty to commit the individual who has failed to carry out the order of the court for contempt, so as to prevent the authority and administration of law from being brought to disrespect and to protect the dignity of the court.

“The terms of the Orders of this Court are clear and unambiguous. This court Is satisfied that the respondent (presently and those before him) has had proper knowledge of the Orders of this Court, there is no denial of such knowledge and the receipt of Forms 48 and 49.

“The respondent filed a counter affidavit, was duly represented in court by different counsel, who stated how they had written several legal opinions which were not attended to.

“The refusal and failure of the respondent to comply with the orders of this court has been proved in this case. The respondent, in this case, the inspector-general of police, in the person of Usman Alkali Baba, is to be committed to prison and detained in custody for a period of three months or until he has obeyed the order of this court, made on the 21st October, 2011, in all things that are to be performed, whichever period is shorter.

“If at the end of the three months, the contemnor remains recalcitrant and still refuses to purge his contempt, he shall be committed for another period and until he purges his contempt.”

14th April 2024
Nigerian Pantagraph
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