Sowore: Senate probes alleged desecration of court by DSS operatives

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Barely one week after officers of the Department of State Security (DSS) invaded the Federal High Court, Abuja to re-arrest the arrowhead of #RevolutionNow Protest Mr. Omoyele Sowore, the senate on Thursday ordered its committee on judiciary, human rights and legal matters to investigate the matter.

The chairman of the committee and senator representing Ekiti Central, Mr. Opeyemi Bamidele raised the matter during plenary on Thursday.

He came under Order 43 of the Senate Standing Rule.

Order 43 allows for a lawmaker to raise and issue but prohibits other lawmakers from making contributions or debating the said issue.

He said the “alleged” invasion of the courtroom by “alleged DSS officials”, has raised a lot of concerns in different quarters in Nigeria.

“The leaders and members of the judiciary are particularly concerned about this happening because they believe that the courtroom is meant to be a sanctuary. But for us as a Senate, we cannot begin to take a position or analyse issues based on conclusions without facts.

“Yet, much as we cannot just jump into conclusions, we cannot pretend not to know that Nigerians are concerned about this development,” he said.

Bamidele said the invasion and the dramatic re-arrest of Sowore have generated widespread controversies.

He urged the senate to mandates its committee on national security and intelligence to interface with the relevant security agencies and investigate the matter and report back to this Senate.

However, the senate president, Mr. Ahmad Lawan mandated the committee on judiciary to investigate the matter and submit its report in one week.

Already, the House of Representatives had mandated its relevant committees to investigate the actions of the DSS.

Similarly, the minister attorney general of the federation and minister of justice, Mr. Abubakar said the federal government had ordered an investigation into the Sowore-DSS imbroglio.

Malami disclosed this yesterday in Abuja during his visit to the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice John Tsoho.

“Whatever affects the integrity of the court is a worrisome issue for us… I can never be preemptive of an incident over which I was not a live witness to.

“But one thing I am certain of is that the government has put in place mechanism for investigation of the reported incident.

“So, I would not like to be preemptive in terms of a conclusion, one way or the other, without allowing the consummation and conclusion of the investigation process,” he said.

It would be recalled that Sowore was arrested by the DSS on Saturday, August 3, 2019, ahead of a planned protest slated for Monday, August 5, 2019.

He, together with another activist, Mr. Olawale Bakare charged with treasonable felony, fraud and cyber-stalking President Muhammadu Buhari.

The court granted the duo bail twice but the DSS refused to release them until last Thursday – when the secret police was also fined.

However, less than 24 hours later, DSS operatives invaded the court were Sowore was standing the trail in attempt to allegedly re-arrest him.

The action was greeted with scathing criticisms with many Nigerians calling for the head of the director general of DSS, Mr. Yusuf Bichi.

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