It is no longer news that the Senate rules was allegedly forged for Current Senate leadership to emerge in 2015. Till date, no single individual has been convicted of the crime. Had it been a poor man on the road carried out a minor forgery not up to that monumental fraud at the National Assembly, one could only imagine the Gestapo manner at which such a person would be manhandled by our security agents who are fond of prosecuting masses on minor mistakes that need only advisory intervention from them. Then one wonders if the law was only made to punish the poor and eulogize the fraudulent wealthy people. Regrettably, most of the poor still rally round the criminals that have entangled them in perpetual poverty. What an intellectual retrogression that masses still worship those who destroy their present and mortgage their future!!!
Section 214-216 of 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended) made provisions for Nigeria Police Force.

Similarly, the Police Act (2004) in Part II Section 4 provides “The Police shall be employed for the prevention and detection of crime, the apprehension of offenders, the preservation of law and order; the protection of life and property and the due enforcement of all laws and regulations with which they are directly charged, and shall perform such military duties within or without Nigeria as may be required by them by, or under the authority of, this or any Act”
With the above provisions, the Nigeria Police is empowered by law to ensure enforcement of laws made by National Assembly.

So, when any member of our society commits or is alleged to have committed or been involved in a crime, the ideal thing to do is for the police to take charge immediately by arresting or inviting whoever is involved except the few granted the immunity under the law while in Office. However, the Rights and Freedom Advocates (RIFA) could not fathom what could have warranted the Senate President Bukola Saraki ignoring the police invitation issued on June 3, 2018 and that of July 23,2018 requiring him to appear for interrogation at the intelligence response team of the Force on June 4 and July 24, 2018 respectively.

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Instead of appearing at the Police detectives’ office he was only reported to have planned, staged and managed a self-inflicted blockade of his official quarters by sponsored and settled police officers. He quickly released a planned video justifying his pseudo-house arrest by police. Nonetheless, he surreptitiously and hurriedly showed up at the National Assembly where he went to announce house break till September 2018 but ignored police invitation. If the whole Senate President could disregard an institution established by law, why should anyone honour senate invitation henceforth? This is very dangerous for our nation that Senate President Saraki and other dramatis personae are really mocking and endangering our national honour for selfish interest. Even when Adolphus Wabara was the Senate President and Tafa Balogun was the Inspector General of Police, the two were arrested and prosecuted.

So, if Senator Saraki was found to be involved in the murder of 33 people and scores of others who were injured in Offa robbery, is the Senator telling us he is worthier than the deceased and should not be made to face justice? The earlier all good citizens of Nigeria prevail on the Senate President the better before he set bad precedence for the institution he represents. He should be reminded that should National Assembly summon anybody in the future and such a person fails to honour the invitation, the senate should be held responsible for setting the bad precedence.

By then will it not be the same police that is being ignored now that the senate will direct to arrest the person? So, if the Senators are too big to bow to the law of the land, will Police find Senate worthy of being obeyed? As if that of Senate President was not enough, Senator Dino Melayo who about a year ago was engulfed in certificate forgery saga just played another drama scene on Thursday July 26, 2018 when the Twitter Senator; Ben Murray Bruce announced his abduction on the day he was to appear at a Court in Lokoja over gun running and all his security details could not even know when the abduction occurred. However, few hours to official closing time on Friday July 27, 2018, the Senator declared himself released without even the abductors negotiating for anything other than to allow him missed his court case. This was nothing but escape abduction to avoid prosecution perhaps having seen the avalanche of evidence at the disposal of the court that air has blown the ruff of hen.

The Senate summoned Comptroller-General of Police when Customs seized some illegal motors allegedly belonging to the Senate President, when the Code of Conduct Tribunal Chairman seemed professional and determined, the Senate summoned him over sponsored allegation. Similarly, when Ibrahim Magu decided to pursue fraudulent senators, the senate summoned him and failed to confirm him till date because he failed to dance to the tune of the senators who were alleged wanted soft landing for their criminal and fraudulent past affairs. Were those invited not serving heads of their agencies or who misinformed our senators that senators were more important than the heads of those agencies?

The current Chairman of Police Service Commission; Mr Musiliu Smith who was removed as Inspector-General of Police (IGP) by former President Olusegun Obasanjo for supervising police failure to uphold rule of law as they went on industrial action which was against the extant law should not allow history repeat itself in this case of senate disregard for our national institutions. As a result, if by July 31, 2018 the Senate President failed to honour police invitation, the Force should not hesitate to evoke its powers as enshrined in Police Act by ensuring no criminal sponsor (s) disregard any institution in the land and go scot-free
The National Assembly led by Dr Bukola Saraki has a lot of the Senators accused of crimes ranging from embezzlement of public fund to gun running to armed robber sponsorship, yet they move freely like normal citizens while the police even give them protection.

Would such treatment have been given to non-senators if involved in such crimes? RIFA calls on international community and patriotic Nigerians with good conscience to resist rape on our national honour and institutions by Senator Saraki and colleagues by ensuring the law of the land is respected. Unless the Senate President answers police invitation and Police is allowed to carry out its investigation as usual, then both the Police and the Senate are playing on the intelligence of Nigerians and it would be disdainful if people should start disregarding police invitation before the Police and the Senate know the consequence of their current drama.

Luqman Soliu
Rights and Freedom Advocates (RIFA)

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