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Senate probes alleged court invasion by DSS operatives

The Senate has mandated its Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters to investigate the recent alleged invasion of the Federal High Court, Abuja, by operatives of the Department of State Service (DSS).

The Upper Chamber waded into the matter on Thursday during plenary following a point of order raised by Senator Opeyemi Bamidele (APC, Ekiti Central).

Recall that operatives of the Service were alleged to have invaded the premises of the Federal High Court, Abuja, on December 6, 2019, to re-arrest the Publisher of Sahara Reporters, Omoyele Sowore, who was released a day earlier.

Opeyemi, relying on Section 43 of the Senate Standing Orders, said the reported invasion of the court room by alleged officials of the DSS is an issue that raised a lot of concerns in different quarters in Nigeria.

“The leadership and members of the Judiciary are particularly concerned about this development because they believe that the court room is meant to be a sanctuary.

“For us as a Senate, we cannot analyze issues based on conclusions without facts that we consider technical.

“Much as we cannot jump into conclusion, also is the fact that we cannot pretend not to know that Nigerians are concerned about this development.

“Mr. President, the reason I came under 43 is so that I will not generate any controversy or even make the Senate debate over an issue like I said earlier, we still need to have facts and evidence.

“As elected representatives of the people in whom Nigerians and including the Judiciary must find their voice, that we mandate our committee on National Security and Intelligence to interface with the security agencies to investigate what happened and report back to the Senate”, Opeyemi said.

However, the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, in his ruling on Senator Opeyemi’s point of order, mandated the Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters instead to investigate the alleged invasion of the Federal High Court by DSS operatives.

The Committee, which is chaired by Senator Opeyemi Bamidele, is expected to turn in its report by next week Thursday.

Dele Fashomi
Dele Fashomi, seasoned journalist and communication teacher, is a holder of Master of Arts degree in Communication and Language Arts from the University of Ibadan in 1992/93. Earlier, he had bagged a Bachelor degree from the same university in 1984, after which he proceeded to the Nigerian Institute of Journalism, Lagos, in 1990, for a postgraduate diploma in Journalism. He had done many courses in communication, including the EU-BBC Editing Course in 2002. Mr. Fashomi combines effectively the practice, research and teaching of communication. And to date, he has published two academic works in communication: Issues in Communication Technology and Policy (2010) and Economic and Social Issues in Advertising and PR (2013). He had his first break in the Nigerian media in Concord Newspapers in 1990 and today, he has over two and half decades experience earned in several newspapers. He has been part of many start-ups, such as The Republic (1987), The Comet (1999), The Anchor 2001 - 2002; Sun Newspapers (2003); Westerner newsmagazine (2005 - 2010) as Editor; National Life (2011) as Sunday Editor, and Newswatch Newspapers (2012- 2016) as Daily Editor. Dele Fashomi is now the Publisher/Editor-in-Chief of newspaper online, which he started in July 2015. He is also into biography writing, with many books in his trail, some of which he wrote alone and one he co- authored with his mentor, Mr Dare Babarinsa, entitled:  Olabiyi Durojaiye - DARE TO BE DiFFERENT. He also guided and collaborated with Pa Olatunji Odusanya in writing his autobiography - AGAINST ALL ODDS. There are many other books in the works under his pen.