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Time to free Bawa from DSS custody, Falana charges FG

Human rights activist and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Femi Falana, has called on the Federal Government to order the release of former Chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa, from the custody of Department of State Services (DSS). THE GUARDIAN reports.

Falana, who stated that the remand order against Bawa had expired, said under the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), cumulative lifespan of a remand order is 56 days. Therefore, having exceeded the detention period permitted by the Act and the Constitution of Nigeria, DSS should be directed to release Bawa from illegal custody without further delay.JAMB Portal 

“The plight of both suspects should be a lesson for all public officers in Nigeria who always behave as if there will be no tomorrow. However, the government, which rules by law, is under legal obligation not to breach the fundamental rights of citizens, except in a manner prescribed by the Constitution,” he said.

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Stressing that he had earlier demanded immediate release of Emefiele and Bawa, Falana said: “I requested the Federal Government to charge the two detained suspects before a court of competent jurisdiction, if there was evidence they had committed criminal offences.InformationGuideNigeria

“It is public knowledge that Emefiele was recently charged with illegal possession of firearms before the Lagos Judicial Division of the Federal High Court. Even though he was granted bail, the DSS treated the order of the court with contempt.’’

“As the violent invasion of the court, coupled with disobedience of the order of the court by officials of the DSS could not be justified, the Federal Government decided to withdraw the charge of illegal possession of firearms. The case was, accordingly, struck out by the court, while Emefiele was charged with some economic crimes at the Abuja Judicial Division of the Federal High Court.”NYSC Portal 

“In view of the fact that Bawa has not been charged with any criminal offence whatsoever, the DSS ought to have released him from custody. I am not unaware of the claim that Bawa is being detained on the basis of a remand order issued by a magistrate court in the Federal Capital Territory.JAMB Result

“It ought to be pointed out that the remand order has become spent, invalid and illegal as no magistrate has the power under Section 493 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015 or Section 35 of the Constitution of Nigeria to authorise the detention of a criminal suspect for 67 days without trial.”

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Essien, Goodnews is a gruaduate of Communication Arts, University of Uyo, Uyo; Currently working at Infoguide Media as a news writer.

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