Former minister of state for Education and lawyer, Olorogun Keneth Gbagi, yesterday backed last Saturday’s raid and arrest of some senior judges by the Department of State Services (DSS), arguing that the security agency didn’t act foul of any law.
He added that the laws of Nigeria gave the DSS the legitimacy to raid the judges’ house and arrest them even without a court warrant.
Gbagi, who is a trained criminologist, also took a swipe at the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) and his party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for opposing and attacking the DSS for the operation.
The former minister while addressing a press conference in Abuja over the operation of the DSS, revealed that the security agency had invited the judges but that it was forced to swoop on the judges upon getting information that they had instructed their lawyers to file stay of execution on their impending arrest.
He however warned that the DSS must follow through with the prosecution of the judges to a final conclusion or else it would be a waste of time.
The former minister who said the DSS should be congratulated, added that they wouldn’t go to the residence of a judge that had no “skeleton in his cupboard”.
He said, “ Let’s look at it critically, if you take the laws of Nigeria as it were as enacted in 2015, and that law is ACJA, if you run down and see section 12 sub section 1, section 13 of that law, gives a law officer and I mean any law officer and by extension, you and me the powers to break into any house within Nigeria for purposes of effecting an arrest. It is a law.
“It goes further that it does not matter whether it is Saturday or Sunday, such arrest, breaking and entering is legal for purposes of saving the state and bring about a lawful arrest.
“It went further and gave you and I powers, in section 47 subsection 1, to arrest persons. It does not even specify that you must produce a warrant of arrest. It says that warrant of arrest can be produced subsequently after the act of arrest has been committed.”
He added that until corruption in the judiciary is addressed, the much needed sanity in the country will not be achieved, stressing that criminals have taken over the country.
He said, “For them to have come to your house, you have a case to answer. Those who have skeletons are the ones that are afraid.
“Criminals has taken over and they are now running the state, if we are not careful we will become a kangaroo state.”