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PAZ Oil Directors suit against IGP, 5 others frivolous, mischievous

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Management of Kam Steel Integrated Company Nigeria Limited, Ilorin, Kwara state has described suit brought against the inspector General of Police (IGP), Nigeria Police Force (NPF), the Kwara state commissioner of Police and three others by directors of Paz Oil Nigeria Limited on alleged claim of violation of fundamental human rights as frivolous and mischievous.

Recalled that Directors of Paz Oil Nigeria Limited, Ibrahim Shehu Tenimu and Jemima Monosoko Shehu have sued the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Nigerian Police Force (NPF), Kwara Police Commissioner and three others for N10 billion over alleged violation of fundamental human rights.

In the suit filed on their behalf by their counsel, Akintoye Balogun before Justice Mobolaji Olajuwon of a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, the directors alleged that the 5th Respondent in the suit, Dr. Kamoru Yusuf and his Company, has allegedly been using the powers of the Police, particularly the State Intelligence Bureau (SIB) of Kwara State Command to intimidate, harass, witch hunt and oppress the directors of Paz Oil Nigeria Limited as well as their family members.

Reacting to the development on Saturday, the Media and Public Relations Manager of the firm, Abdulazeez Arowona, confirmed that the company is yet to receive any court summon stressing that appropriate steps will be taken promptly, “the complainant is finding all means to evade justice”.

He added that a Chief Magistrate Court sitting in Ilorin had in August remanded Esther Shehu and David Kpanaki at the federal Correctional Centre for allegedly conspiring to defraud Dr. Kamoru Ibitoye Yusuf, owner of Kam Steel Nigeria limited of $400,000.

“Dr. Yusuf had written a petition to the deputy registrar of the magistrate court, Ilorin in a direct complaint on July 18, 2023 through Tofa Ahmed & Co Solicitors & Advocates.

“The defendants were brought to the court on charges of criminal conspiracy, cheating, screening an offender and obstruction.”

“The offences contravened sections 97, 322, 167 and 148 of the penal code law and 1(3) of Advance Fee Fraud/other related offences act cap A6.”

According to the Police First Information Report (FIR), one Ibrahim Tenimu Shehu and Jemima Monosoko Shehu, now at large conspired with Kpanaki, who identified himself as the director of Paz Oil, an alleged “fictitious company”, to fraudulently sell a vessel MT ORYX TRADER as MT REMOS to the petitioner.

“You dishonestly presented (that) the vessel (was) free and not subject to any administrative detention, knowing fully well that it is a subject of court order.

“You also used a 16year-old- daughter of one of you, Jemima Monosoko, as Executive Director and an in-law of a suspect as another Director to fraudulently sell the vessel to the petitioner”.

“On the account of fraudulent presentation by Tenimu and Jemima, you, Kpanaki made the petitioner to spend $400,000 in addition to the purchase price of the vessel and you all absconded”, the FIR submitted.

The charge sheet further added that when the suspects were later tracked by a team of Police operatives to Abuja for possible arrest, the second accused, Esther Shehu, obstructed the officers.

“You dishonesty called your accomplice who claimed to be the DPO of the jurisdiction who deceitfully spoke to the operatives to leave the premises, that the suspect Tenimu Shehu Ibrahim (at large), will meet them at the police station by 12pm but rather with help of Kpanaki, whisked him out in a Blue Tinted Toyota Corolla to an unknown destination”, the sheet added.

Prosecutor, Nasir Yusuf, in his submission, told the court that Esther and Kpanaki confessed to the allegation during investigation at the police headquarters, Ilorin.

He urged the court to remand them to enable the police to conclude their investigations.

Counsel to the defendants, Abdulkareem M. objected to the prayers of the prosecutor.

In his ruling, the trial magistrate, Ibrahim Muhammed, said he lacked jurisdiction over some of the allegations.

The Directors of Paz Oil are seeking amongst other prayers a declaration that the serial acts of intimidation, incessant invitations and persistent threats by the 1st to 4th Respondents (the Police) to invite, witch-hunt, arrest, detain, embarrass and humiliate the Applicants herein, on the alleged prompting and instigation of the 5th Respondent (Dr. Kamoru Yusuf), amount to a violation of their fundamental rights as enshrined in sections 35, 37, 39, and 41 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, as altered, and Articles 5, 6, 8, 9, 10, 12 & 14 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights Ratification and Enforcement) Act, Cap A9, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

The Applicants also want a perpetual injunction restraining the Respondents from the continuous invitations, witch-hunting, arrest and attempts to arrest, detention, embarrassment and humiliation of the Applicants herein.

At the time of filing this report, no date has been fixed for the hearing of the suit.

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