Legal Nigeria

Convict not in our custody, NCoS official tells court

..As court fixes June 17 for ruling

Representative of the Controller of the Nigerian Correctional Services (NCoS), Lagos Command, Mr. Rotimi Oladokun has told Justice Akintunde Salvage of a Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja, that the command did not receive a committal warrant against the Chairman of Confidence Cargo Freight Forwarder, Dada Aigbe.

Oladokun, who is from the Legal Unit of the NCoS State Command Headquarters, Ikoyi, told the court that the five Correctional Centres in Lagos including Kirikiri Maximum or Medium have no record or remand warrant of Aigbe in their file. He said he was in court following the Subpoena testificandum served on the Controller of the Correctional Centre, Lagos Command by the court

It would be recalled that Justice Savage had on March 11, ordered that Aigbe be committed to prison for one month until he purges himself of the contempt. The order followed Aigbe’s disobedience to appear in court after forms 48 and 49 contempt proceedings were filed against him in a suit filed by Mr. Maruf Jimoh-Akogun, counsel to the judgment creditor.

Jimoh-Akogun had in a suit marked in ID/3831LMW/2016 filed by the HRM Oba Shakirudeen Kuti for themselves and on behalf of the Ajamogun/Onikotun family of Ewu kingdom against the Osolo of Osolo, HRM, Oba Agbabiaka Elemo and the Baale Mafoluku Ajao Estate, Chief Hussam Elemo as the first and second defendants respectively.

However, Oladokun in his testimony told the court: “I was briefed about the matter by the command. From our record, the command did not receive a committal or remand warrant. We have verified from our internal communication, that there was no record of Dada Aigbe.”

Meanwhile, the judgment debtor’s counsel, Mr K. U Okoro had filed an application dated April 29, under Section 60b (36) and Section 94 of the Sheriff Law seeking an order setting aside the entire committal proceedings on the ground that it was served by an unknown sheriff. The ground of the same notice is that it was not served on the applicant.

“We are also saying that the court did not have jurisdiction to give the order. We urged the court to set aside the order and to rule in our favour and grant our relief.”

The judge held that he had read the objection and counter, and if he was not convinced that it was served, he wouldn’t have issued the warrant. Jimoh-Akogun in his response opposed the preliminary objection, saying they have filed a counter affidavit to their objections. He told the court that the reason for Aigbe’s committal to prison was the complaint that he involved himself in a land matter that he was not a party to.

He said the court had ordered a status quo on the res but Aigbe continued building on the land in dispute. He claimed that the ancestral family land along Airport Road, Ewu Town, Mafoluku, Oshodi, Lagos, was allegedly invaded by Aigbe and his agents. However, after listening to their arguments, Justice Savage adjourned ruling on an application seeking to set aside the entire committal proceeding to June 17, 2024.

Source: The Guardian.