The Peoples Democratic Party has protested against the detention of its candidate for last year’s Osun State governorship election, Ademola Adeleke, by the police on Monday.
Adeleke was detained at Force Headquarters in Abuja after he was invited by the police
“This is highly provocative, an invitation to anarchy and a recipe for a very serious crisis not only in Osun but also in the judiciary and our nation,” the PDP National Publicity Secretary, Ologbindiyan, said at a press conference in Abuja on Monday.
“The arrest and detention of Senator Adeleke is a direct act of violence against our laws, the institution of the judiciary and the 1999 Constitution (as amended).
“This is part of the grand plot by the All Progressives Congress to coerce Senator Adeleke into relinquishing the mandate that was freely given to him by the people of Osun State, which was further established by the tribunal.”
Ologbondiyan said the plot was to arraign Adeleke before “an ostensibly compromised magistrate’s court” over the same issues of alleged examination malpractice and certificate forgery before the Federal High Court, Abuja.
He said, “The heinous calculation by the APC is to ensure that Senator Adeleke is not free to be sworn in as governor of Osun State as they know he will surely obtain justice and retrieve his stolen mandate at the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.
“The police arrested him in the guise of an invitation despite the direct orders of the Federal High Court restraining them or their agents from arresting and detaining him on account of the statement of result and testimonial duly issued by the Ede Muslim Grammar School, Ede, pending the determination of the originating summons pending in the court.
“Senator Adeleke, as a law-abiding citizen honoured an invitation by the police only for him to be arrested and detained in a dingy facility in Maitama, in direct affront to the order of the Federal High Court.”
The PDP argued that arraigning Adeleke in a magistrate’s court for a matter already being heard by the Federal High Court was aimed at causing a crisis in the judiciary.
The party said, “The PDP therefore demands the immediate and unconditional release of Senator Adeleke by the police.”
The police said the lawmaker would be arraigned on Tuesday for unstated criminal offences.
Force spokesman, DCP Frank Mba, confirmed to one of our correspondents that they had taken Adeleke into custody.
He stated, “Senator Adeleke is currently in police custody. He was taken into custody in the evening (Monday) in connection with ongoing criminal investigations touching on his person.”
Meanwhile, the Federal High Court in Abuja had granted Adeleke permission to travel to the United States for a checkup on Tuesday.
Justice Inyang Ekwo however ordered him to honour a fresh police invitation on May 6 (Monday), before travelling the next day.
In his ruling delivered on Friday, but which its enrolled order was seen by The PUNCH on Monday, the court specifically directed the police not to prevent Adeleke from travelling on May 7.
The judge ordered him to return to the country on June 9.
Adeleke’s passport was seized by the court last year as the bail condition granted him, following his arraignment.
The judge ordered the Chief Registrar of the court to release the passport to him to enable him to embark on the foreign trip.
Justice Ekwo also ordered Adeleke to return the passport to the Chief Registrar within three days of his arrival in Nigeria on June 9.
He delivered his ruling after hearing Adeleke’s lawyer, Dr Alex Iziyon (SAN), and the prosecuting counsel, Simon Lough, on Friday.
After Adeleke applied for the release of his passport, the police opposed the application on the ground that there was a fresh petition against him.
The petition was said to have been filed after the senator had filed his application before the court.
Others standing trial before the court alongside Adeleke are Sikiru Adeleke, the Principal of Ojo-Aro Community Grammar School, Alhaji Aregbesola Muftau, Registrar of the school, Gbadamosi Ojo, and a teacher in the school, Dare Olutope.
The prosecution accused the five defendants of committing the offence of examination malpractices by fraudulently, through impersonation, registering Adeleke and another Sikiru Adeleke, as pupils of Ojo-Aro Community Grammar School for the National Examination Council’s June/July 2017 Senior School Certificate Examination in February 2017.