The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, GCON is expected to inaugurate the National Prosecution Coordination Committee (NPCC) which is primarily charged with the handling high profile cases having public interest elements in Nigeria.
The formation of the Committee which will be inaugurated on Friday, 27th May, 2016 at the Presidential Villa, going by its spokesman, Comrade Salihu Othman Isah is pursuant to the powers vested on the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN as the nation’s Chief Law Officer as contained in Section 174(1) of the 1999 Constitution.
“The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria under Section 174(1) vested the powers on the Attorney General of the Federation to institute and undertake criminal proceedings against any person before any court of law in Nigeria, other than a court martial, in respect of any offence created by or under any Act of the National Assembly.
The HAGF is also to take over and continue any such criminal proceedings that may have been instituted by any other authority or person. He is equally charged to discontinue at any stage before judgment is delivered any such criminal proceedings instituted or undertaken by him or any other authority or person. This is the position of the Constitution.”
Comrade Isah who doubles as the Media Adviser to the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice revealed in a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja on Wednesday, that the 19-man Committee is charged with the efficient, effective and result oriented prosecution of high profile criminal cases in the country.
According to him, the Committee is also to guarantee prompt contact and synergy between investigators and the prosecutors of high profile criminal cases, manage information to the public on such cases as well as to ensure strict compliance to the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), 2015.
For its terms of reference, the NPCC is to advise the HAGF on the exercise of his prosecutorial powers in Section 150 and 174 of the 1999 Constitution, prepare the policy strategy document for the coordination of investigation and prosecution of high profile criminal cases in Nigeria and to also collate the list of such cases as well as assigning them to prosecution teams.
The Committee will scrutinize the proof of evidence and charges in high profile criminal cases in the country before arraignment. In addition, it will receive and analyse reports from the investigation and prosecution teams engaged to handle such cases.