Nigeria

IGP files motion to vacate contempt, committal order

The Federal High Court in Abuja sentenced Usman Alkali Baba, the Inspector-General of Police, to three months in prison on Tuesday for not obeying a valid court order.

Usman Alkali Baba, the Inspector General of Police, has filed a motion with the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja to vacate the contempt proceeding and committal order issued on Tuesday, November 29, 2022.

On December 1, 2022, the IGP filed a motion with the Federal High Court in the Federal Capital Territory outlining numerous reasons why the orders should be vacated. He highlighted that he had yet to be appointed to the position of Inspector-General of Police when the case was initially filed and the reinstatement order was issued.

In a statement to NewsXtra on Friday, Force Spokesperson CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi quoted the IGP as saying, “contempt proceedings were served via substituted means in November 2018 and January 2019 consecutively, on the then Inspector-General of Police, and not on me as the incumbent.”

“The IGP, in his disposition, further noted that even before he assumed 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. 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 29, 2022, requesting the Commission to issue a reinstatement letter to the plaintiff and also effect 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.”

The IGP, however, reminded Nigerians of his unwavering dedication to upholding the rule of law and respecting judicial authority. He promised that he would neither knowingly nor unknowingly disregard any order legitimately obtained by courts of competent jurisdiction.

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