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June 25, 2024
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EFCC Gestapo-styled Invasion of Akure nightclubs and Matters Arising, by ex-Ondo lawmaker, Hon. Tomide

THE EFCC GESTAPO-STYLED INVASION OF SOME AKURE NIGHTCLUBS AND MATTERS ARISING

I woke up this morning deeply worried and concerned about the reckless and unacceptable invasion of some Akure nightclubs by men of the EFCC,Ibadan command. I reflected on the modus operandi of security agencies in Nigeria generally, which reeks of the unfortunate legacy of the military era which are only obtainable in dysfunctional societies.

I have particularly been wondering what gives the security agencies in Nigeria so much confidence to humiliate citizens and traumatize us boldly? My concern led me to the ADMINISTRATION OF THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE ACT 2015(ACJA 2015). I therefore found some sections of the ACJA 2015 to be ambiguous and may need Supreme Court interpretation. Focus should be on;

  • section 148 which states that warrant of arrest can be given at “any time of the day”.
  • What is the definition of “force reasonably necessary for the purpose” in section 149(2)?
  • what are the extent and limits of section 12(2)?
  • ⁠what are the extent and limits of section 9(1)??

I’m wondering all of these because the issue in context for me is not whether EFCC should/can arrest suspected fraudsters or not- that is settled,if they have reasons to arrest a suspect,they can or should do so. However,my point is that does the law permit them to;

  • invade public spaces and destroy business outlets
  • launch teargas and pepper spray on random people,
  • ⁠beat and mutilate people indiscriminately,
  • ⁠harass and molest people
  • ⁠and violate their fundamental human rights??

Now, if the ACJA 2015 or other relevant laws does not permit the aforementioned,what is the remedy if it is established that the EFCC officials overstepped their rules of engagement? For me,I believe justice can only be reasonably served in this case if the following are done;

  • immediate sanction,such as the demotion of the Head of the EFCC,Ibadan zonal command.
  • ⁠immediate dismissal and prosecution of all the officers who partook in the invasion,particularly the team leader.
  • ⁠public apology by the EFCC chairman to residents of Akure,the Ondo state capital.
  • ⁠setup of a committee to investigate the extent of damages and losses caused on the two nightclubs by the invasion,and a full financial restitution made by the EFCC.

Anything short of the above mentioned will amount to yet another act of Nigeria traumatizing its citizens,and teaching them to accept injustice as the standard way of life.

Tomide Akinribido
(Immediate Past ODHA member from Ondo West Constituency 1)

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