Friday, December 9, 2022 9:22 pm
*To be arraigned for illegal possession of firearms on February 2023
A Federal High Court, sitting in Lagos today struck out an application filed by former President of the Nigerian Indigenous Shipowners Association (NISA), Chief Isaac Jolapamo, urging the court to restrain the Nigeria Police Force, and the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), (SAN), from arraigning him over alleged illegal possession of firearms.
Chief Jolapamo had approached the court through his counsel. Mr Femi Falana SAN to seek an order of interim injunction restraining the defendants and their agents from arranging him over alleged illegal possession of firearms at the same Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos, pending the final determination of the origination motion.
However, the presiding Judge Lewis-Alagoa in his ruling ordered the applicant to face his trial before Justice Yelin Bogoro, and challenge the charge filed against him by the Police.
Jolapamo had through his lawyer, Mr Femi Falana SAN, argued that the Police had already concluded the investigation, and upon the conclusion of the investigation, the Police came to a conclusion that there is no case against him and there is no prima facie case established against him.
He stated that the charge filed against him is defective, and if the Applicant is arraigned based on the said defective charge, his rights to liberty and fair hearing would be violated.
He stated that Section 46 of the constitution empowered the court to protect the rights of any citizen to liberty.
In opposing the application, counsel to the respondent Anthony Iyeye submitted that since a charge has been filed before the court, the only option available to the Applicant is to take his plea.
He argued that the Applicant cannot object to the validity of a charge, which he has not taken a plea for.
He urged the Court to dismiss the application as it constitute an abuse of the court process
In a charge filed before the court, Jolapamo was accused of being in possession of several illegal Firearms namely, a Mar-22 Calibre Rife, a pump-action firearm, and a Double-Barrell, all without lawful authorisation.
It was alleged that Chief Isaac Jolapamo had several Firearms namely, Mar-22 Calibre Rife, a pump-action firearm, and a Double-Barrell, all without lawful authorisation.
” Isaac Jolapamo ‘M‘, sometime in March 2021 in Ikoyi, Lagos State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did commit a felony, to wit; unlawful possession of Mar-22 Calibre Rifle with reference number 967475; you thereby committed an offence contrary to section 3, and punishable under section 27(1)(a)(i) of the Firearms Act.
“That you Mr Isaac Jolapamo ‘M’, sometime in March 2021 in Ikoyi, Lagos State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did commit a | felony, to wit; unlawful possession of Pump-Action with reference number 9331425, you thereby committed an offence contrary to section 4 and punishable under section 27(1)(b)(i) of the Firearms Act.
Meanwhile, Justice Yelim Bogoro has fixed February 10, 2023, for Jolapamo’s arraignment, in a criminal charge filed against him pending before the court.