Carol Afegbai, The retired Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) who was summoned before the Edo State Judicial Panel of Inquiry for victims of SARS and related abuses, has filed a lawsuit before a Benin high court to challenge the powers of the panel to compel her to appear before it.
The panel had last week, following the failure of Afegbai to willingly appear before it, ordered the immediate arrest of the retired CSP and be brought before it to explain her alleged complicity in the 2013 murder of a 500Level student of University of Benin, Ibrahim Momodu.
Chairman of the panel, Justice Ada Ehigiamusoe, had, while issuing the arrest order, said, “It is of the view therefore of this panel that the respondent having failed to appear before the said panel, a warrant of arrest should be issued against her to appear before the said panel.”
She added, “Accordingly, it is hereby ordered that a warrant of arrest be issued forthwith on the said respondent who is named Carol Afegbai who shall appear before this panel following the order of this panel on the 9th day of December 2020.”
However, when the panel resumed hearing on Wednesday, Justice Ehigiamusoe told Jefferson Uwoghiren, counsel to the family of late Ibrahim Momodu that the panel had been served a court paper from the High Court restraining it from inviting Afegbai.
Ehigiamusoe disclosed the panel would honour the court restraining order to demonstrate Nigerians that the panel has respect for the nation’s judiciary.
Counsel to the late Ibrahim Momodu’s family, Jefferson Uwoghiren, reacting, described the action of l Afegbai as an ambush, and queried why he was not served the court application.