The Inspector General of Police (IG), Mr. Ibrahim Idris, Wednesday dared the Senate by refusing to respond to any queries or make any comment before the ad-hoc committee charged with investigating him on allegations of corruption levelled against him by Senator Isa Misau (Bauchi, APC).
According to him, the matter was already before a court which would amount to subjudice.
The Herald reports that this is just as the presidency appealed to the lawmakers to allow for the exploration of what it termed a “multi-door” resolution to the impasse.
The IG, who arrived the venue of the probe at 2.03 p.m. flanked by several uniformed and plain-clothes police officers, was also accompanied to the hearing by the Senior Special Assistant to the President, National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang, and his legal team from the law firm of Alex Izinyon & Co.
The Senate had set up the committee to investigate the allegations of corruption, misappropriation of funds and professional misconduct levelled against the IG by Senator Misau, a former police officer.
However, before the committee could commence sitting, the IG filed a suit against the Senate and its committee, seeking an order of the court stopping the committee from summoning him and proceeding with its probe.
In an unprecedented move, the federal government, through the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice also filed criminal charges against Senator Misau.
When the criminal proceedings commenced against Misau last week, he appeared in court and was granted bail on self-recognition.
Idris, on the other hand, had refused to appear before the Senate committee, compelling it to threaten to issue a warrant for his arrest.
Drama started Wednesday at the hearing after the chairman of the committee, Senator Francis Alimekhena, asked the IG if he would like to make any comment before an oath was administered to him.
Instead of responding, the IG’s counsel, Mr. Alex Izinyon (SAN), rose to speak, but he was interrupted as he attempted to introduce himself.
The committee members insisted Alimekhena’s question was directed at Idris. The lawyer tried to stand his ground, stating that he would speak on behalf of his client, but the lawmakers maintained that he should take his seat.
Idris, who was seated next to Izinyon, then beckoned on the counsel to sit down.
Addressing the members, the IG reading from a document he had with him, said the matter was subjudice.
“I will not make any comments, I will not answer any questions in respect of the allegations, in view of the various civil and criminal cases pending in the law courts, most especially when the senator, Isa Misau, has already been arraigned in court in respect of this matter,” he said.
Continuing, the IG clarified that he decided to appear before the Senate committee out of the “high respect I have for the Senate and my respect for the rule of law”.
“Furthermore, it is expected that the Senate and the committee will refrain from making references to the issues, as it will be against Order 41(7) and 53(5) of the Senate Standing Orders 2(15), as amended,” he stated.
As the IG read his statement, Enang was observed going to the side of the table where the lawmakers were seated and whispering into the ears of the chairman of the committee, before returning to his seat beside the IG. He then whispered into the ears of the IG while he read his prepared statement.
After reading out his statement, Idris did not utter another word while the proceedings lasted.
Having read the statement, Izinyon was finally allowed to speak. He told the committee that a court order was obtained Wednesday morning directing the Senate President and committee members to appear at the FCT High Court on November 16, 2017 “to show cause and for hearing of the substantive application”.
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