Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, senior advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and a member of the Lagos State #EndSARS panel says Judicial Panels of Inquiry set up across the nation to probe police brutality are not illegal as opined by Festus Keyamo, minister of state for labour and employment.
Mr Adegboruwa stated this in a statement on Monday while responding to the assertion of Mr Keyamo that the panels set up by the National Economic Council (NEC) headed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, are illegal.
The junior minister who is a SAN had argued that state governments across the federation lacked the power to probe the conduct of security agencies under the federal government.
Responding to the remarks, Adegboruwa said it has never been part of the legal system in Nigeria, for a plaintiff who approached the court in the first instance, to turn around to challenge the legality or jurisdiction of the court.
“The #EndSARS Panels were set up at the behest of the Federal Government, through the National Economic Council,” the lawyer recalled. “In the case of the Lagos Panel, the federal government, through the Nigerian Army, voluntarily submitted itself to the jurisdiction of the Panel, the federal government called witnesses, it tendered documents and it made very lengthy presentations.
“A party cannot approbate and reprobate at the same time. Thus, a party who initiated a process and willingly and actively participated in that process, cannot turn around, after judgment, to plead illegality or absence of jurisdiction, simply because the outcome is unfavorable. We must strengthen our institutions to make them work.”