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Sowore: Reps to probe DSS invasion of Federal High Court

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*say one arm of govt can’t intimate another

*fear that N/Assembly may be invaded someday by DSS operatives if not incident is not checked

*task Buhari on adherence to rule of law

Sowore: House of Representatives
House of Representatives

By Levinus Nwabughiogu – Abuja

Described as an affront to the rule of law and the principle of separation of powers, the House of Representatives has resolved to investigate the invasion of a branch of the federal high court by alleged operatives of the Department of State Service, DSS.

It will be recalled that some operatives of the DSS broke into the court while in session to rearrest the convener of #Revolution Now protest, Omoyele Sowere barely 24 hours after his release from their detention facility last week Thursday in Abuja.

Sowore, a presidential candidate in the 2019 general election had prior to his brief release been incarcerated by the authorities for 125 days despite a court order to set him free.

But the DSS had since denied swooping in on Sowore in the court.

Miffed by the alleged invasion, the House at plenary on Tuesday resolved to probe the matter to unravel the circumstances.

The motion was sequel to a motion by the Minority Leader of the House, Hon. Ndudi Elumelu from Delta State.

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Elumelu in the motion canvassed for adherence and respect to the concept of separation of powers as enshrined in the laws of Nigeria, fearing that if the invasion was not checked and offenders punished, it might degenerate to National Assembly someday.

The House also charged President Muhammadau Buhari to live up to his mantra of rule of law.

He said: “The House notes with dismay, the exhibition of thuggery, brute force, lawlessness, contempt and disregard for the rule of law by yet to be identified persons within the precinct of the Federal high court, Abuja on the 6th day of December, 2019.

“Further Notes that the videos emerging in public domain shows these unidentified person trying to bundle Omoleye Sowore and his co-accused Olawale Bakare away from the courtroom, while Sowore’s supporters were resisting them, which is an abuse to the sanctity of the courtroom.

“Concerned that the men of the civil society claims that the unidentified masked man are agents of the Department of the state services (D.S.S).

“The Department of State Services has denied through their spokesman Peter Afunanya that its personnel were never involved in the incident.

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“Concerned further that section 4,5 and 6 of the 1999 Constitution as amended guarantees the separation of powers and the independence of every arm of Government.

“A situation where one arm is seen to be overpowering another in the course of dispensing her duties, will definitely spell doom for the separation of powers as enshrined in the Constitution.

“Worried that the actions of these unidentified persons disrupted judicial proceedings on the 6th day of December 2019 and made the presiding judge to abandon her duty post because of safety concerns. This is a complete desecration of the temple of justice and such an action should be completely discouraged.

“Worried further that if this action is not properly put to check, the National Assembly may one day be invaded and the relevant security agencies will claim not knowing who the offenders are.

“Aware that the invasion of the Federal high court Abuja runs contrary to the avowed assurances of the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria

“Further Aware that physically assaulting Mr. Omoleye Sowore and his co-defendant Olawale Bakare by the yet to be identified persons inside the courtroom is the highest act of sacrilege against the judicial arm of government and a complete disrespect to the rule of law.”

Adopting the motion, the House mandated its committees on National Security and Intelligence, Judiciary and Human Rights respectively to investigate the event and report back to the House within two weeks.

Vanguard News Nigeria.

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