Former Vice President of the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Monday Ubani, has berated the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, for casting aspersion on the State Judicial Panels of Inquiry on Restitution for Victims of SARS Related Abuses and other matters.
Naija News had earlier reported that the minister, on Sunday, stated that the panel set up by the Lagos State Government was illegal.
Keyamo claimed that the panels lack the legal power to investigate men of the Nigerian Police and the Army, adding that the two agencies are answerable to the Federal Government and not the state governments.
But in a statement issued on Sunday night, Ubani said the minister made a grievous mistake in law and logic due to his claim that the #EndSARS panels were illegal.
The former NBA official said contrary to Keyamo’s claim, state governments have the power to set up Judicial Commissions of Inquiry to probe human rights abuse arising from police brutality.
Ubani stated that the Judicial Commissions of Inquiry set up by state governors are constitutional, legitimate and are empowered by law, stating that nothing in the Constitution forbids them from investigating policemen and soldiers.
He submitted that no judicial decision so far has pronounced the panels as unconstitutional despite the grumblings in some quarters.
Ubani added that the states in the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja can set up Tribunals of Inquiry over any issue in Nigeria and can summon and investigate anybody on any issue especially matters that affect the “welfare” of the citizens of the country.
He, however, asked the Federal Government to accept the recommendations and resolutions of the various Tribunals of Inquiry and use them to address the bane of human rights violations by the Nigerian Police Force.
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