Godwin Tsa, Abuja
Counsel to former governor of Imo State, Dr. Ikedi Ohakim has faulted his arraignment before the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja by the Inspector General of Police on alleged false information.
The lawyer, Aloy Ejimakor explained that the arraignment of his client could not have taken place in the face of a pending motion seeking to quash the three-count charge.
The motion in reference marked HOW/717/2020 dated November 9, 2020 specifically sought for an order removing and quashing the proceedings in charge number CR/993/2020 (Inspector General of Police v Ikedi Ohakim) in which Chinyere Amuchienwa-Igwegbe is the nominal complainant.
It further sought for an order of injunction restraining the respondents either by themselves and /or their agents, privies, surrogates or any other persons whosoever from further charging, summoning, arresting, harassing, discharging and humiliating the applicant and /or doing anything whatsoever that will infringe on the applicant’s fundamental right in connection with any complaint, petition or matter concerning the applicant and Amuchienwa-Igwegbe.
Listed as respondents in the motion are the Nigerian Police Force, DCP Kolo Yusuf, Force Investigation Bureau (FIB), Tactical Squad, NPF; SP Mohammed Yusuf, FIB, Tactical Squad, NPF; Commissioner of Police, Imo State and Chinyere Amuchienwa-Igwegbe.
The rest are the Inspector General of Police (IGP); Margret Ochella, DCP, FIB, NPF; ACP Ibrahim Yidi, FIB, Stanley Nwodo; Orji Kanu and CP Tuesday Osayemo, NPF.
In addition, he stated that the charges were never served on him as he only became aware of it in the media.
Besides the motion to quash the charges, the former governor has filed and obtained court orders in a fundamental human rights enforcement suit directing the Inspector General of Police and other respondents to maintain status quo.
Specifically, the said order dated September 10, 2020 reads: “That all parties in this suit are hereby ordered to do anything in connection with the subject matter and should stay all actions whatsoever pending the determination of the substantive motion in this suit.”
The said order was issued by Justice V. I. Onyeka of the High Court of Imo State in the fundamental human rights enforcement suit filed by Ikedi pursuant to sections 34, 35 and 37 of the 1999 constitution and other relevant laws.
In a 12 paragraphs affidavit in support of the motion to quash the charge, the former governor averred that the said injunctive order was dully served on the respondents who acknowledged vide the motion they filled on September 29, 2020, praying the court to vacate the order.
He further averred a committal procedure through Form 48 was served on the respondents, warning them of the consequences of disobedience of said order.
He explained that Lady Chinyere was introduced to him by a friend sometimes in late 2018, whereupon they became close friends and politically associated.
“That I was the Accord Party candidate in the 2019 Imo State governorship election, and during the electioneering camping, I felt and need to enlist my friends and political associates to assist me in the electioneering camping.
“That Lady Chinyere expressed what I had then believed to be a sincere interest in working in my electioneering campaign, whereupon, I accepted and disbursed to her, various amounts of money in cash to be expended on the purchase of critical items (mostly vehicles) for the said campaign, as well as for my business and personal needs but she allegedly misappropriated the money, as she never purchased the items.
“That when I started making reasonable and civil demands for the refund of my money, she resorted to threatening and defaming me.