A High Court sitting in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, on Thursday granted an interim order restraining the leadership of the country’s senate from investigating the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris.
Justice Abba-Bello Mohammed granted the application of an interim injunction pending the hearing of the substantive suit of breach of right to fair hearing by the senate leadership against the police chief.
The judge also granted leave to the applicant’s counsel, Alex Izinyon (SAN) to publish in two national dailies all papers concerning the originating summons, including hearing notice which would be serve on the senate.
Mohammed adjourned the case until 4 December to hear the main issues in the substantive suit before the court.
The suit filed before the court with Ref Number CV/0060/2017, has the President of the Senate, the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Senator Isah Misau as respondents.
Others also listed as respondents are Senator Francis Alimikhena, Senator Binta Garba, Senator Suleiman Hunkuyi, Senator Duro Samuel, Senator Ogba Obinna, Senator Nelson Effiong and Senator Abdulaziz Nyako.
The applicant is seeking that the senate’s resolution setting up an Ad hoc committee to investigate the allegation raised by Misau, is a violation of his right to fair hearing under the constitution.
He is also seeking for a declaration that the senate’s letter of IGP’s invitation to appear before the Ad hoc committee on 2 November based on a petition by Senator Misau, is also a violation of his right.
Other reliefs sought by the applicant include an order restraining the Ad hoc committee, its agent or any other from taking further steps on the matter in the name of its earlier invitation to the applicant.
The applicant hinged his action on the grounds that members of the Ad hoc committee are colleagues of the senator who raised the petition against him.
It also said that both the print and electronic media published grievious criminal allegations made by Senator Misau against the IG and Nigeria Police.
Counsel to the applicant Izinyon, informed the court that an attempt made by the bailiff of the court to serve the senate all papers of the originating application for it to show cause on the matter was rebuffed by the agents of the respondents.
He added that when the bailiff went to the office of the Clerk of the Senate to carry out the service, he was beaten and locked up by some officers in that office.
Izinyon urged the court to exercise its power of Order 15 Rule 4 of the High court to effect justice on the matter.
He also prayed the court to look at Order 11 Rule 27 and 28 which provides for punishment against anyone who threatens the bailiff of a court.