*EndSARS panels legal, set up by FG through NEC
*Says FG Cannot Approbate And Reprobate

A member of the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, SAN has faulted the statement of the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo (SAN), that the EndSars panels set up by various states are illegal.

Keyamo had, while appearing on Sunday Politics, a current affairs programme on Channels Television monitored by TheNigeriaLawyer, dismissed the #EndSARS panel set up by the Lagos State Government and the report it presented to the state government recently on the basis that it was out of the jurisdiction of the panel to investigate the activities of Federal Government institutions and officials such as the Nigeria Police Force and the Nigerian Army.

However, in reaction via a statement made available to TheNigeriaLawyer, Adegboruwa said it is odd in Nigerian legal system for a party who approaches court to turn around to challenge the legality or jurisdiction of the same court. According to Adegboruwa, the EndSars panels were set up at the behest of the Federal Government and Federal Government submitted itself to the jurisdiction of the Lagos Panel.

“The federal government has recently muted the idea that all the Judicial Panels of Inquiry set up by the various States across the Federation, especially that of Lagos State, are illegal.

“It has never been part of our 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. 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.” Adegboruwa said

The Senior Advocate of Nigeria went on to state that a party cannot blow hot and cold. Having willingly submitted to the jurisdiction of a panel, the FG cannot challenge the legality or jurisdiction of the Panel. He urged government to rather make efforts in building the trust of the people while they await for white paper on the report he.

He said, “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.

“While we all await the White Paper from the Lagos State Government, it is important for government to build trust in the people in all its dealings and utterances.”

Written By Obioma Ezenwobodo Esq

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