By Bukar Bolori
The Independent Investigation Panel on Human Rights Violations by the defunct SARS and other units of the Nigerian Police Force on Monday issued a warrant of arrest on the Commissioner of Police in charge of legal services at the Force Headquarters, CP Ogbeh Ochogwu.
The warrant was issued in respect of the alleged enforced disappearance and unlawful arrest and detention of John Emeka Alozie by the Force since 25th of June, 2017.
The CP was on several occasions ordered to appear before the panel with the case file of the victim, Alozie but up till date he has not honoured the order of the panel despite adjourning the petitions five times to allow more time for the CP to do the needful.
Apparently angered by the disregard, the Chairman of the panel Justice Suleiman Galadima (rtd.), who issued the arrest warrant on the top police officer, said that the attitude of Ochogwu is unbecoming of a lawyer and officer of the Police Force.
According to the eminent jurist, the only option left for the panel is to issue a warrant of arrest on the CP Legal and mandate the National Human Rights Commission to write to the Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee, LPDC to report the Ochogwu conduct in the matter.
The Chairman noted that the CP has flagrantly and repeatedly disobeyed the order of the panel, having refused to turn in the said case file to enable the panel unravel the truth about the whereabouts of Alozie in accordance with the law.
It would be recalled that the wife of the victim, Alozie had testified that a high court had ordered the Police to release the victim and the ordered was never obeyed till date.
The panel adjourned the petition till 27th of April, 2022 for progress report.