Lagos EndSARS Judicial Panel

Lawyers sue Lagos Government, petition court to dissolve EndSARS judicial panel

*The Plaintiffs pray the court to make a declaration that the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State cannot set up a panel to investigate himself, being as a party to the matter

Isolated Moses | ConsumerConnect

Alleging that the state governor did not exercise his power in the public interest by setting up a panel, two lawyers have filed litigation against the Lagos State Government (LASG) at a Federal High Court.

Adekunle Augustine and Semion Akogwu, in a case dated November 11, 2020, and filed at a Federal High Court, Lagos, with suit number FHC/L/CS/1572/20.

Augustine and Akogwu prayed the court to disband the ‘Judicial Panel Of Inquiry and Restitution For Victims Of SARS Related Abuses’.

The Plaintiffs in the case have asked the court to dissolve the panel purporting that Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos is a party in the matter, and did not exercise his power in the public interest by setting up the panel in the first place.

The lawyers, therefore, prayed the court to make a declaration that the Lagos State Governor, as a party to the matter, cannot set up a panel to investigate himself.

The plaintiffs alleged the outcome of the panel will be in favour of the state.

They stressed that who pays the piper dictates the tune.

Aside from the judicial panel of inquiry, other defendants in the suit are, the Governor of Lagos State, the Chairman of the panel, and Attorney-General of the state who are first, third and fourth defendants respectively.

The Chairman of the panel is also listed as the second respondent in the case.

Augustine and Akogwu, in the suit filed through their counsel, Samuel Adama, press for the determination of the following questions:

*Whether  having regards to section 36(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended), Exhibits A and Exhibit B, the 2nd Defendant being an Agent/Appointee  of the 1st Defendant can ensure fair hearing for the Plaintiffs under the auspices of the 3rd Defendant in a mater in which the 1st Defendant is a party?

*Whether having regards to section 5(2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended), Exhibits A and Exhibit B, the 1st Defendant validly exercised his powers in public interest by setting up the 3rd Defendant to investigate a matter in which the 1st Defendant himself is a party?

*Whether having regards to Exhibits A and Exhibit B, the 1st Defendant is a party to be investigated under the terms of reference for the 3rd Defendant in the discharge of its mandate?

*Whether the 4th Defendant being the Chief law officer of the State ought to act in public interest by advising the 1st Defendant against the setting up of the 3rd Defendant and ought to do all things legally possible to ensure fair hearing in the matter?

Upon the determination of the questions, the plaintiffs also prayed the court for the following reliefs:

*A declaration that having regards to section 36(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) together with Exhibits A and Exhibit B, the 2nd Defendant being an Agent/Appointee of the 1st Defendant cannot ensure fair hearing for the Plaintiffs under the auspices of the 3rd Defendant in a matter in which the 1st Defendant is a party.

*A declaration that having regards to section 36(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) together with Exhibits A and Exhibit B, the 1st Defendant, being a party in the matter, did not exercise his power in public interest by setting up the 3rd Defendant.

*A declaration that the appointment of the 2nd Defendant and the setting up of the 3rd Defendant by the 1st Defendant is tantamount to making the 1st Defendant a Judge in his own cause and ipso facto breaches the Plaintiffs rights to fair hearing.

*An order of this Honourable Court disbanding the 3rd Defendant and nullifying its proceedings and whatsoever actions taken thereby so far to give way for a credible and independent commission of inquiry to be set up by the Federal Government to take over the mandate of the 3rd Defendant as contemplated by its establishment ab initio.

No date has yet been fixed by the court for hearing of the case, according to report.

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