Posted by News Express | 19 January 2021 | 1,421 times
There was a mild drama on Monday at the sitting of Judicial Panel of Enquiry, Ogun State, when a police sergeant, Adeleke Olalekan, was caught threatening a member of the panel.
Olalekan was reportedly caught pointing a finger at a member of the panel, in a manner suggestive of threat, during the sitting at Magistrate Court 1, Abeokuta.
The erring police cop, in mufti, had accompanied a Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP), Gbenga Megbope, who was being cross-examined over a matter before the panel.
It was gathered that when attention of the Chairman of the Panel, Justice Solomon Olugbemi (rtd) was drawn to the alleged threat, he asked the Sergeant to come forward and explain the rationale behind his action.
In a shot clip of the drama obtained by our correspondent, a retired Deputy Inspector General of Police and a member of the panel, Peter Ogunyanwo, was asking the Sergeant, “why are you disrespecting members of the panel?”
The visibly rattled police sergeant, however, could not justify his action, but prostrated before the panel members, and begged for mercy.
“I don’t disrespect you sir. I know you sir (referring to the retired DIG). I can’t disrespect you sir,” the Sergeant said.
On his part, Megbope, who was the Commander of the defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) at Obada – Oko, also begged on the Sergeant’s behalf, saying “We are sorry sir.”
Reeling out the law against such action, the Panel Chairman, said “any act of disrespect, insult or threat to the Commissioners or any Panel members while sitting in Commission or any act of disrespect, insult or threat to a Commissioner or Panel members at any other time or place on account of his proceedings in his capacity as a Commissioner or Panel member shall be deemed to be an act of contempt within the meaning of this law under Section 16 of the same law”.
Reading further, the Chairman revealed that, “any person who commits an act of contempt, whether the act is or is not committed in the presence of the Commissioners sitting in Commission, such person or persons shall be liable to summary conviction before a court of competent jurisdiction to be convicted and punished according to the tenet stipulated in the law”.
Justice Olugbemi noted that the Police Sergeant ought to be recommended for trial at the Magistrate court, but pardoned him following the pleading and apology.
He, however, warned that “the panel would no longer tolerate any act of disrespect to it or any of its members as the law would be allowed to take its course in any such further act.” (Daily Trust)
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