By: Okosun Dennis
The campaign by the Nigerian Police Force that “Bail is Free” is under serious doubt as the Inspector General of Police, IGP Mohammed Adamu has been petitioned for illegal detention and demand for N500,000 for bail by operatives of IGP Monitoring Unit in Lagos Annex.
The petitioner, Barrister Giwa-Amu of Charcole & Darda Chambers on behalf of his clients, Mr Sunday Enebechi and Mr Chinedu Paschal Ojukwu, alleged that both men have been detained at the police cell since 6th October, 2020 without bail.
He further alleged that the case for which his clients are been detained is already before a competent court of jurisdiction.
He explained in his petition that every effort made to secure their bail was resisted by the team leader, ASP Fakunle on behalf of their Commander, CSP Ngozi Braide.
He noted that ASP Fakunle, insisted on collecting N500,000 bribe before granting his clients bail, and has continually frustrated every attempt made to secure their release.
Barr. Giwa-Amu in his petition titled: “RE: Unlawful Detention Act & Conduct Unworthy of a Police Officers; Demand For Bribe, Official Corruption & Extortion” dated 7th October, 2020 and addressed to the Inspector General of Police,
The Nigeria Police Force Headquarters, Louis Edet House,
Abuja, Nigeria, explained that his Clients were formally invited by the police on the 23rd September, 2020 to be interviewed by CSP Ngozi Braide on an allegation of fraudulent conversion and threat to life which was reported to the Inspector General of Police Force, Headquarters, Abuja, Nigeria
However, due to their inability of his Clients to attend the interview on Monday 28th September, 2020, necessitated doing a formal letter notifying the IGP Monitoring Unit, Force Headquarters Annex, Obalende, Lagos that it wouldn’t be possible to honour the invitation on that date.
As law abiding citizens, and in consonance with natural justice, they were said to have given the IGP Monitoring Unit of a new date hence the law firm gave an undertaking to produce both Clients on the 6th October, 2020.
Expectedly, “we produced our Clients and consequent upon which their statements were taken and bail granted but they were not released from Police custody because of a demand for bribe of N500,000:00 (Five hundred thousand naira) made by one ASP Fakunle on the instructions of CSP Ngozi Braide.
He further reiterated “That we informed the said ASP Fakunle and his team that the matter which gave raise to this petition was pending in court and that the jurisdiction of the police to detained our Clients under guise of investigation was arrested by the suit in Court, in Suit No: LD/7037/GCMM/2020 STARHORIC PROPERTIES LIMITED vs. SULIPEX HOMES & PROPERTIES LIMITED & FOBEM ENGINEERING AND SERVICES LIMITED.
While lamenting that the demand for bribe by the officers was contrary to the force unlimited campaign that “Bail is Free,” added that “due to the inability of our Clients to provide the said money, our Client was detained and is still in Police custody with ASP Fakunle threatened our Clients that he would not release him until the money is provided.”
According to Barr. Giwa-Amu, he urged “the Inspector General of Police to use his good offices to cause a detail investigation of this matter,” with a view to ensuring that justice is served.
Attempts to reach the Force Public Relations Officer, DCP Frank Mba to react to the allegation failed as calls made to his phone line said “the line wasn’t reachable.” Also, a WhatsApp message sent to him was also not responded to.