The Bayelsa State Police Command has stated that the case of extrajudicial killing of two under aged youths by two policemen in the state was a case of double jeopardy.
Testifying before the State Judicial Panel on Police Brutality and Extra Judicial Killing headed by Justice Emmanuel Ogola (retd), the police authorities confirmed that the accused police personnel have been tried by a competent court and sentenced to death by hanging for the offence.
At the resumed sitting of the panel, counsel to the police, Z. Gwegwe (Esq), argued that the petition on the killing of the under aged youths was outside the jurisdiction of the panel.
He stated: “The subject matter of the petitioner’s petition was not within the confines, boundaries and scope of jurisdiction of the Bayelsa State Judicial Panel of Inquiry on Police Brutality and Other Related Matters, on the ground that the matter upon which the petitioner’s preliminary objection is based, was already determined on October 5, 2018, and the defendant was sentenced to death by hanging.
“By Section 32, sub section 6 of the Nigerian Constitution 1999, as amended, the petitioner’s petition amounted to double jeopardy for the ex-convict by the decision of the court.”
She, therefore, prayed the panel to dismiss the petition for lack of jurisdiction.
But counsel to the petitioner, Aluzu (Esq), argued that the panel had the jurisdiction to hear, entertain, investigate and make its reports regarding the petition.
Referring to the Rules of Proceedings of the Panel, Section 12, paragraph A, B and C, he submitted that the end result of the panel was not to pass judgment or find anybody guilty but to make recommendations.
He further submitted that there were sufficient particulars in the petition that brings it within the jurisdiction of the panel.
He, therefore, prayed the panel to dismiss the respondent’s preliminary objections.
After listening to the submission of the parties, the panel adjourned till February 17, 2021 for ruling.
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