A Lagos based lawyer, Mr. Lanre Balogun, has called on the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Ogun State Ministry of Justice, to withdraw the charge against his client, Alhaji Ibrahim Ibuoye.
Balogun in a petition addressed to Ogun State Ministry of Justice, Commissioner of Police and Registrar, Magistrate Court 3, Ota, called for proper investigation of Ibuoye, saying the defendant was arraigned on a trumped-up charge over allegation that he (Ibuoye) illegally trespassed into a piece of land belonging to former President Olusegun Obasanjo, in Itele, Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government Area of Ogun.
Balogun, according to the petition insisted that Ibuoye’s charge and arraignment before the court in Charge No. MOT/390C/2020- Commissioner of Police vs Ibuoye, on September 1, 2020 was based on concealment of fact coupled with the fact that there was no investigation at all by the police.
He said the police, in arraigning his client, were only acceding to the wishes of one Chief whose aim is to get Ibuoye and other members of Adogun Atele family out of the way, to pave way for further criminal and illegal mining in Itele.
The petition reads: “We humbly request the withdrawal of this charge for further investigation to take place so that innocent citizen is not unjustly punished.”
Balogun claimed that the Chief has issues with the Adogun Atele family and should therefore face the family rather than trying to instigate a trumped-up charge against Ibuoye.
He alleged in the petition how the Police Area Commander in Sango deceived Ibuoye to follow him on a visit to the new Commissioner of Police in Abeokuta for official introduction on August 31, 2020 but rather taken to the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Wale Abass, who without conducting any investigation, ordered Ibuoye’s immediate detention at about 8.45pm.
“My client was arraigned the following day before the court for illegally entering into Obasanjo’s farm.
“Despite efforts by our client to explain to the Police boss that the land in question does not belong to Chief Obasanjo and that it was Adogun Atele family that stopped the illegal mining of laterite on their land by the said Chief, but the Police boss turned down all explanations. To our surprise, Ibuoye was in less than 12 hours after his detention charged to the Magistrate Court on trumped up charges,” the petition stated.
The petition further claimed that upon arriving at the office of the Deputy Commissioner of Police, in Abeokuta, Ibuoye met one Alhaji, whom he alleged has been assisting the Chief to terrorize Itele Community, using the good name of Obasanjo to perpetrate illegalities.
He said the illegalities include engaging in illegal mining, criminal sale of the landed properties of the Adogun Atele family, who are the owners of Itele vide several judgments from the High Court, Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.
He also alleged that the Chief converts the proceeds of the illegal mining and sales into the personal accounts belonging to himself and that of his wife.
Balogun noted that it was whilst at the office of Abass that it became clear to Ibuoye that the Area Commander, Sango-Ota deceived him and purposely brought him to hand him over to the Police Command, Eleweran on the instruction of the Chief because of the stoppage of the illegal mining on the said land.
The petition further stated how the Chief has been collaborating with the various police commands in the state to intimidate members of the Adogun Atele family and those supporting the family’s course, which includes the defendant.
He accused the Chief of claiming to be representing Chief Obasanjo to watch over the land and using the name and influence of the former president to engage in illegal mining of laterite on the land that belonged to Adogun Atele, while has been making daily payments of the illegal mining into his personal account and that of his wife.
According to the petition, that singular act alone shows the land where illegal mining is ongoing does not belong to Obasanjo as the monies realized daily would have been paid into the account of the former president and not the accounts of the Chief and his wife.
The petition also affirmed that the Adogun Atele family has initially reported the illegal mining activities being carried out to the Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, but realised later that the Chief had submitted application to the cadastral office to obtain licence to continue his illegal mining.
“This compelled the family to petition the office of Cadastral, the Director General, Department of State Security Services, the Inspector General of Police and Commandant General of Civil Defence Corps about the criminal and illegal activities and consequently consented to the usage of the land by Ibuoye,” the lawyer said.
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