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Dasuki: Malami faces disciplinary panel over professional misconduct

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The immediate past Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mallam Abubakar Malami, will on  Thursday face the Disciplinary Panel of Legal Practitioners Privileges Committee over a prejudicial statement made against the detained former National Security Adviser, Colonel Sambo Dasuki (retd).

His invitation is based on a petition written to Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, by Dasuki’s family.

The Hearing Notice, dated May 16, 2019, and signed by Patricia Orhomuru Esq, Secretary, Disciplinary Committee of the Legal Practitioners’ Privilege Committee, has a reference No: PET/LPPC/23/2018.

Former national security adviser of ex-president Goodluck Jonathan, Sambo Dasuki (R), speaks with his lawyer Ahmed Raji, during his trial at the federal high court in Abuja, on September 1, 2015. Nigerian prosecutors on September 1, 2015 slapped a charge of unlawful possession of arms against Dasuki. Dasuki was arraigned on a “one-count charge of being in possession of firearms without licence,” Prosecutor Mohammed Diri told the federal high court in Abuja. AFP PHOTO

The notice read in part: “Take notice that the above matter is fixed for hearing by the Disciplinary Committee of the Legal Practitioner Privileged Committee of the Office of Registrar Supreme Court of Nigeria Abuja on June 14, 2019 at 11.00 o’clock in the forenoon.’’

Malami is expected to face the panel for investigation in a statement credited to him in the Voice of America, VOA, Hausa Service on July 13, 2018 in which he was quoted that Dasuki would not be released despite all subsisting court orders for his release on bails.

In the audio recording of the interview he granted VOA, Malami had accused Dasuki of being responsible for the deaths of over 100,000 Nigerians during Jonathan’s era.

Malami had said:  “Remember, we are talking about a person who was instrumental to the deaths of over 100,000 people. Are you saying that the rights of one person are more important than that of 100,000 who lost their lives?”

A Notice of hearing in the petition filed by Dasuki’s family against former AGF indicated that Malami would be interrogated by the committee of the Legal Practitioners at the Office of the Chief Registrar, Supreme Court of Nigeria, Abuja.

The Dasuki’s family had petitioned the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, praying for an investigation and sanction of the former minister over his unprofessional conducts and utter disregards to the rule of law likely to cause anarchy in the country through his promotion of disobedience to the lawful order of court by the Federal Government.

In the petition dated July 23, 2008, and received by the NBA the same day, the family wanted Malami to be investigated in the resolve of the Federal Government not to comply with any order of court admitting the former NSA to bail and had been unjustly detained for almost four years.

Recalling how their son served Nigeria meritoriously for 21 years as a courageous officer in the Nigerian Army; Managing Director Nigeria Security Printing and Minting Company, NSPMC, and later as National Security Adviser, NSA, to the immediate past administration, they stated that Dasuki in his lifetime has not been convicted of any crime till date.

The petition signed by his wife, Hajia Bintu Sambo Dasuki; his son, Abubakar Atiku Dasuki and his nephew, Senator Umar Dahiru, explained how the ordeal of Dasuki started when Buhari’s government came on board with unlawful invasion of his houses in Abuja and Sokoto during which his vital properties, including vehicles, were carted away by operatives of the Department of State Service, DSS.

The petition also chronicled how Dasuki was arraigned before four different High Courts and was granted bail by all the judges who claimed the charges were bailable offences under Nigerian law.

They also added that the Court of Justice of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, declared the detention of Dasuki unlawful, null and void and subsequently ordered his immediate release, in addition to imposing a fine of N15m on the Federal Government as compensation for the breach of Dasuki’s fundamental rights.

The family regretted that up till date, none of the orders of the high courts and the international court were obeyed by the Federal Government. The petition noted the latest judgement of Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court which on July 2, 2018, admitted Dasuki to bail upon a discovery that his detention was a breach of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and that of the fundamental right of the Ex-NSA.

The Dasuki’s family claimed that upon meeting the bail condition, the warrant of release of Dasuki on bail, signed by the court was served on the Director General of DSS and the Attorney General for their compliance with the order of the court.

The family, however, informed the NBA in the petition that rather than complying with the order of the court, the AGF, as the chief law officer of the federation, made unsalutory and unprofessional remarks that the order of the court as relates to Dasuki would not be obeyed by the Federal Government.

The family wondered whether a lawyer, let alone a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, ought to have engaged in such an unprofessional utterance capable of causing anarchy for the nation.

The NBA was prayed to invoke laws on Code of Ethics on professional code of ethics against Mallami, investigate him and impose deserved disciplinary sanctions against him in order to safeguard the rule of law for the country.

The family lamented that Malami’s statement was prejudiced, unwarranted and unbecoming of a legal practitioner, adding that imposing sanctions against Mallami will make other Nigerians respect the rule of law.

The family also asked the NBA to intervene in the ordeal of Dasuki and speak out and take decisions and actions that will compel the Federal Government to respect the rule of law and obey the order of the court that admitted him to lawful bail.



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