Violation of the Nigeria Police Act by DPO Hazardous – AITA

An Abuja base anti-corruption NGO; Almushahid Initiative for Transparency and Accountability (AITA) unveil details act of abuse and violation of the Nigeria Police Act and the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria by Asokoro Divisional Police Officer (DPO) which it describes as unfortunate and hazardous.

During its 2nd Quarter Press conference held at the Abuja head office, AITA narrated how former Chief Superintendent of Police, CSP Saidu Ibrahim who recently got promoted to the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) has violated the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Nigeria Police Act in a petition it reportedly received as follows:

“AITA received the petition from Mohammed Badamasi the Chairman Association of Watch and Jewelry Sellers Awka Anambra State and Mohammed Aljume who complained on behalf of Alhaji Bashir Shuaibu (whom we hereinafter refer to as the petitioner). We have been reliably informed and we believe that the petitioner is a watch and jewelry seller in Awka Anambra State who was arrested in place of Shuaibu Yakubu who operates in the same shop as the petitioner.

“It is alleged that a certain house help of an unknown acclaimed “big” woman in Abuja; stole her jewelries and absconded to Awka Anambra State where she in company of her sister went to the shop of the complainant, on invitation from Shuaibu Yakubu where she sold the jewelry to Shuaibu Yakubu, which she allegedly stole from her madam. This transaction was done in the shop where Alahaji Bashir Shuaibu does his business.”

“Since on the 14th Thursday April 2022 the petitioner was in custody without being granted bail even after his bail was requested by his attorney and hurriedly charged to court, this coupled with the fact that there is no clear reason to continue holding the petitioner as he is ready to meet up all the bail conditions is a flagrant disregard for his fundamental human rights as enshrined in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).” AITA stated.

Neither the complainant nor the principal suspects have been able to provide any real proof that the petitioner is actually the one who paid for and bought the jewelry allegedly stolen from the complainant. The petitioner was only shown a picture of the complainant with the top half cut off showing him the jewelry that was purportedly stolen and sold to Shuaibu Yakubu.

“DPO Saidu Ibrahim continued to hold the petitioner even after two weeks of his arrest, with no formal charges brought against him and was hurriedly arraigned before the Kabusa Area Court after the IPO in the case “Inspector Jonathan Tiwas” purportedly demanded the sum of either Fifteen or Twenty Million Naira from the brothers of the petitioner before he can be released and they told him they could not come up with such amount. From this action it is obvious that CSP Saidu Ibrahim the DPO Asokoro Division has brought his unscrupulous practices from SARS to the division, the DPO has shown a lot of interest in the matter as shown in his initial refusal to charge the petitioner to court or release him on bail until after fourteen days.” It Added.


The Position of the Nigeria Constitution (1999) and the Nigeria Police Act (2020) on Bail.

The 1999 Nigerian constitution clearly states that persons arrested or detained shall be brought before a court within a “reasonable time”.

According to the constitution, the reasonable time means a period of 24 hours when a court of competent jurisdiction is within a radius of 40 kilometres to the police station or a period of two days in any other case.

Section 35(4) of the 1999 constitution states that: “Any person who is arrested or detained in accordance with subsection (1) (c) of this section shall be brought before a court of law within a reasonable time, and if he is not tried within a period of – (a) two months from the date of his arrest or detention in the case of a person who is in custody or is not entitled to bail; or (b) three months from the date of his arrest or detention in the case of a person who has been released on bail, he shall (without prejudice to any further proceedings that may be brought against him) be released either unconditionally or upon such conditions as are reasonably necessary to ensure that he appears for trial at a later date.”

Subsection 5 states that: “In subsection (4) of this section, the expression “a reasonable time” means – (a) in the case of an arrest or detention in any place where there is a court of competent jurisdiction within a radius of forty kilometres, a period of one day; and (b) in any other case, a period of two days or such longer period as in the circumstances may be considered by the court to be reasonable.”

This implies that the detention of arrested suspects for more than 48 hours without being charged to court is against the provisions of the constitution.

On the other hand, Section 61 (1) of the Nigeria Police Act 2020 agrees with the provisions of the constitution while stating that a suspect arrested without a court warrant, other than a capital offence, should be granted bail, where it is impracticable to charge to court within 24 hours.

Noteworthy, these rights are captured in Section 35(2) (3) (4) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended and Section 35 of the Nigeria Police Act 2020 and a breach of these rights leads to illegal detention with or without trial.

The Arrest and Detention of Alhaji Bashir at Asokoro Police Division

In his petition to AITA, Alhaji Bashir alleged how he was arrested on the 14th April, 2022 from his office and place of business at Awka in Anambra State by some police men among which was Inspector Jonathan Tiwas who happens to be the Investigation Police Officer (IPO) of the case.

According to Alhaji Bashir, right from the Awka Police Division where he was taken to after arrest, a lady who happens to be the prime suspect for the stolen property was presented before him and asked if she knew him (Alhaji Bashir) and if she transacted any business with him but the lady responded no to both questions.

Surprisingly, even after the lady’s testimony, a day after 15th April, 2022 Alhaji Bashir was moved from the Awka Police Division to Asokoro Police Division in the FCT.

However, Alhaji Bashir said on their way to Abuja around Lokoja, Inspector Jonathan Tiwas requested that he should pay the sum of thirty thousand naira to him (Insp. Jonathan) so that he will not be handcuffed. Alhaji Bashir said he paid the money as requested through the POS pay point at Lokoja.

On arrival at the Police Division Asokoro, Alhaji Bashir was detained. According to Alhaji Bashir, after some time the same Insp. Jonathan requested the sum of fifteen thousand naira in order for him (Bashir) to be allowed out of the cell behind the canter for fresh air, which he paid.

Alhaji Bashir said after a few days in detention, his relatives and friends came for his bail but instead the DPO through Insp. Jonathan requested for twenty or at least fifteen million naira for his release which was turned down because they (relatives) believed Alhaji Bashir committed no crime.

More so, Alhaji Bashir alleged that towards Ed-ill-fitri celebration, the same Jonathan requested for two million naira from him for his release for Sallah celebration which he still said no to.


The Conspiracy behind Alhaji Bashir’s Detention

Haven been arrested illegally from Anambra state in place for another who happens to be the suspect, the conspiracies in the process of detaining Alhaji Bashir for fourteen days started in earnest when Almushahid Initiative for Transparency and Accountability (AITA) ably represented by its National President; Ambassador Aminu Abubakar Majidadi intervened and requested for the bail of Bashir but yet the DPO tactically denied the bail.

It was consequent upon this suspicious incident that the Police at Asokoro Division under the leadership now ACP Saidu Ibrahim and through Insp. Jonathan demanded a huge amount of money at different occasions from Alhaji Bashir and from his relatives for his release as alleged by Bashir and relatives.

More so, in an effort to shy away from due process, the DPO in Asokoro after detaining Alhaji Bashir for 14 days charged him to magistrate court in Kabusa which ought not to be as the case by law involving more than thirty millions of Naira should have been charged to a High Court within its jurisdiction.

Other issues involved has to do with the question on why should the DPO denied the bail of Alhaji Bashir on a noncapital offence that by law is bailable.

Noteworthy, AITA admitted receiving information that it is a regular occurrence at the Division where the DPO works hand in hand with the Grade 1 Area Court Kabusa where they go to initiate such cases and to get illegal court orders to arbitrarily detain suspects for longer than the constitutionally prescribed period.


AITA’s Role in Correcting the Wrongs

First and foremost, it is paramount to state that AITA’s involvement in this case is powered by its mandate to ensure transparency and accountability in Nigerian Public, checkmate the excesses of citizens’ conduct with the aim of providing a dynamic environment, based on the principle of Natural justice, Equity and good conscious within the limits of global ethical practice.

AITA got involved in this case through a petition submitted by a relative of Alhaji Bashir on the illegal arrest and continued detention of Bashir at Asokoro Police Division.

On receiving the petition, AITA officially wrote letters to the offices of the Inspector General of Police, FCT Police Commissioner, Chairman, Police Service Commission, Ministry of Police Affairs, Human Right Commission and the DPO of Asokoro Division requesting for the release of Alhaji Bashir, who is not the suspect and should not be detain in place for another.

On the part of the Asokoro DPO using the Grade 1 Area Court Kabusa for selfish reasons, AITA wrote a petition against the court which received due attention which at the moment caused the judge to be transferred to another court.

At this juncture, AITA on behalf of the petitioner (Alhaji Bashir) petitioned ACP Saidu Ibrahim to the office of the Inspector General of Police and investigation which is also currently receiving due attention.

In conclusion, AITA called on all public office holders who use their positions to intimidate, maltreat and extort the mass for their selfish interests to desist from such as nobody is above the law and the law must always take its course.


Criminal Breach of Trust and Threat to Life of a Nigerian Unacceptable – AITA

An Abuja frontline anti-corruption NGO; Almushahid Initiative for Transparency and Accountability (AITA) vow to fight an act of criminal breach of trust, malicious damage and threat to life of a Nigerian which it describes as condemnable and unacceptable.

In a press statement signed by its national president; Ambassador Aminu Abubakar Majidadi and made available to Captalwatch Media, AITA unveiled details of the petition received from Anthony Okoye against Chief Daniel Orji of Daniel Bob Nigeria Limited.

“The petitioner, Mr Anthony Okoye of Ilongwu Umuanugwo Village, Ifitedunu, Dumokofia LGA, Anambra State brought a petition against one Chief Daniel Orji of Daniel Bob Nigeria Limited on allegations of criminal breach of trust, arson, malicious damage and threat to life.

“Mr Anthony Okoye is a law abiding citizen of Nigeria working in Sweden where he has been working since 2015. Anthony in his petition stated that in 2018 he was introduced by a friend to Daniel Bob Nigeria Limited which is a real estate developing company as he was looking to buy landed property after he returned to Nigeria in 2018.

“After some discussions he decided to buy two (2) plots of land from Daniel Bob Nigeria Limited located at their estate called Police Housing Iisagu Nibo, Awka South, Anambra State for the price of Three Million, Five Hundred Thousand Naira (N3, 500,000.00) only.” It stated.

The statement further reveals that after purchasing the land and duly signing all the papers, the petitioner commenced development of the land after which he traveled back to Sweden and handed over the property to his cousin Chike Obi to continue the development. “Chike Obi in the petitioner’s absence continued the work till it was completed in December 2018, the petitioner also travelled back to Nigeria on the 1st of January 2019 to personally inspect the work and he saw that it was completed.

“Trouble started after Chief Daniel Orji who is the Director of Daniel Bob Nigeria Limited asked the petitioner to pay the sum of Eight Million Naira (N8, 000,000.00) claiming it was for infrastructure and security, after a little hesitation because this was not part of the initial agreement concerning the plots of land, the petitioner reluctantly paid him the sum of One Million Naira (N1, 000,000.00) with the promise to offset the remaining balance at a later time.

The said Chief Daniel Orji then threatened to demolish the petitioner’s house if he does not pay him the balance of Seven Million Naira (N7, 000,000.00), the petitioner then informed his lawyer about the development before travelling back to Sweden.” It added.

The statement added that, the petitioner’s property was continuously vandalized by thugs sent by Chief Daniel Orji when the petitioner called him to inquire what was going on; he threatened to demolish the petitioner’s house if the petitioner did not pay the balance to him (Chief Daniel Orji).

“On one occasion Chief Daniel Bob sent thugs to vandalize the property while the petitioner was on site inspecting the property and they attacked the petitioner and his workers and tried to kill the petitioner, he only escaped by the grace of God and some of his workers were injured in the process. Chief Daniel Bob even went to the extent of sending his wife to meet the petitioner in Sweden in an attempt to collect the money but the petitioner declined as he did not owe Chief Daniel Bob.

The petitioner then travelled back to Nigeria on the 18th December 2020 and subsequently visited the site on the 10th of January and found out that his house had been burnt down, the petitioner then called Chief Daniel Orji and he told the petitioner that he had stopped providing security because the petitioner had refused paying him his balance, the petitioner  then asked him of the One Million that was earlier paid he ignored the petitioner and went ahead to tell the petitioner that the property was burnt down as a result of his refusal to complete the balance of Seven Million Naira (N7,000,000.00).

From here on the petitioner has been calling Chief Daniel Orji to try and settle the matter which he has in turn been sending threats to the petitioner, the petitioner has repeatedly called and reached out to him so the issue will be settled amicably but instead he has refused and even threatened to deal with the petitioner if he does not pay the remaining balance.

He has been bragging that he will deal with the petitioner and that he is a Police contractor and a friend to the police and that there is nowhere the petitioner will go that anything can be done to him that he is untouchable. Recently the petitioner has been put under fear for his life as on separate occasions he has noticed strange people in unmarked vehicles following him.”

At this juncture, AITA called on Chief Daniel Orji of Daniel Bob Nigeria Limited to as matter of urgency to do the needful and stop threatening life of Mr Anthony Okoye as it will do all within it possession to ensure it petitioner is allowed to have what he genuinely bought through its effective working relationship with all the relevant agencies.

In conclusion, AITA reiterates its commitment to fighting injustice and every act of criminality done against any citizen and foreigner alike without fear or favor in accordance with its mandate and constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria.




Capitalwatch Media is a Monthly Magazine Publication of DE-AITA of DE-AITA Communication LTD.

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