Alleged Illegal Arms Possession: Again, Disobedience to Court Order Stalls Dasuki Trial

The continued detention of former National Security Adviser, Colonel Sambo Dasuki (rtd.) by the Department of State Security Service (DSS), in spite of a court order that admitted him to bail since last year has again stalled his trial at the Federal High Court in Abuja.

Dasuki who is being accused of unlawful possession of firearm has on December 29, 2015 perfected the last bail condition, the third in series of bail but was promptly rearrested by the operatives of Department of State Security Services (DSS) for undisclosed reasons. He has since been held without trial.

However, in the bid to enforce his bail, Dasuki’s legal team led by Mr. Joseph Daudu, applied to Justice Adeniyi Ademola of the Federal High Court to discharge the accused on the ground that the government that put him on trial was already in contempt of the court.

Daudu in a motion he argued at the court asked the judge to in the alternative discontinue the trial and strike out the charges against him until the federal government obeys the bail granted Dasuki since last year.

However, in the bid to justify the continued detention, the federal government through its counsel Mr. Dipo Okpeseyi (SAN) filed a counter affidavit claiming that the sureties who stood for Dasuki have not fulfilled the conditions attached to the bail. He also claimed that the government was not in breach of the bail order because the international Passport of Dasuki early seized by the DSS has since been returned to him.

The government’s lawyer also claimed that the DSS only invited Dasuki to have audience at its headquarters in furtherance to its statutory responsibilities of conducting investigation in respect of entirely different offences being handled by the Government.

However Dasuki’s counsel informed Justice Ademola that they have just been served with a copy of the government’s reply to their motion. And that they needed time to respond to series of new issues raised by government in its response.

He then applied to the Judge to grant him an adjournment to enable him study and reply to government’s position.

In his ruling, Justice Ademola said that it is in the best interest of justice and fair hearing as allowed by Section 36 of 1999 Constitution that the adjournment must be granted.

The Judge also said that the court cannot close its eyes to the claim of the defendant lawyer that they have no access to their client, Dasuki to obtain fact to be used for his defence in the charges brought against him by the federal government.

The Judge ordered Dasuki’s counsel to file their response to the claim of government within 7 days and adjourned till March 3, 2016.

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