Lagos State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN) ,yesterday directed the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to discontinue with 566 cases being prosecuted by the police in various Lagos courts. Some of such cases had been in court on or before 2015.
In a press statement signed by the Director of Public Affairs, the state Ministry of Justice, Mr Kayode Oyekanmi, the Attorney General said that such cases have become impracticable to prosecute due to delays.
It stated: “Following the review of the recommendation of the Committee on Decongestion of Non-Criminal cases at the State High Court and Magistrate’s Courts, where such prosecution at the Courts have become impracticable due to delay and its attendant factors or are appropriate for Plea Bargain or criminal diversion’ the Lagos State Government is seeking to discontinue 566 non-active cases from 2015 below, being prosecuted by the police”.
Onigbanjo in the statement recalled that he had earlier inaugurated the committee on February 21, 2020 to review the recommendation of the Arthur Worrey led advisory Committee on police prosecutorial power in Magistrate’s Courts.
He also recalled that the Worrey led Committee in their communique, recommended that the state government should review the role of lay police prosecutors in the criminal justice system of Lagos State.
“According to the statement, the Attorney General having critically examined the committee’s first phase review and recommendation has instructed the Directorate of Public Prosecutions to immediately file a notice of discontinuance in respect of 566 non- active cases, at the registry of the State High Court and Magistrate’s Courts.
He has further directed the immediate commencement of the second phase of the exercise,” it concluded.