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Friday, February 3, 2023

BREAKING: Court nullifies ruling sending IGP Usman Baba to three months in prison

A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has vacated its November 29, 2022 order committing Usman Baba, the Inspector General of Police (IGP), to prison for contempt.

Justice Bolaji Olajuwon in her ruling on Wednesday, December 14, 2022, held that there was evidence before her court that the IGP has substantially complied with the court’s earlier order directing the reinstatement of Patrick Okoli, who was compulsorily retired as a police office.

The judge decided that in view of the development, the application by the IGP, seeking the vacation of the committal order, “is worthy of sympathetic consideration.”

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She held that, “In view of the substantial compliance with the order of the court and the assurance of ensuring full compliance, the order commuting the applicant, IGP, Usman Alkali Baba, is hereby set aside.

Justice Olajuwon had, in the ruling of November 29 convicted the IGP and sentenced him to a three-month jail term for failing to obey the October 21, 2011 judgment of the Federal High Court reinstating Okoli.

Okoli was compulsorily retired in 1992 while serving in the Bauchi State Command as a Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) by the Police Council (now Police Service Commission (PSC), which claimed to have acted under Decree 17 of 1984, a decision the court voided in the October 2011 judgment.

The court had also ordered the payment of N10million to the Applicant, being special and general damages for the unlawful, illegal and unconstitutional denial of his rights and privileges as a Senior Officer of the Nigeria Police Force from 1993 till date.

The development came weeks after the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja convicted the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Abdulrasheed Bawa for contempt of court in relation to his agency’s failure to comply with an earlier order of the court.

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