The Chairman of the Panel on Police Brutality and Extrajudicial Killing in Enugu State, Justice Kingsley Udeh Rtd. says the slow pace of its proceedings is to give all parties fair hearing.
Udeh disclosed this on Tuesday in Enugu during the sitting of the panel.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that all the cases listed for hearing on Tuesday were adjourned at the instance of actions initiated by the defense counsels in the respective matters.
The chairman said that though the panel was worried on the slow pace of its proceedings but it was being patient in order to give parties before it fair hearing.
According to him, all the petitions are against the Nigerian Police and they would have to respond accordingly with processes served on them.
Udeh said that the panel had so far received no fewer than 120 cases, adding that more were still being received.
“We are aware that we have a timeframe within which to dispense with all the cases. However, it will be unfair to send recommendations to the government without giving all parties fair hearing.
“That is why it looks as if we are slow. We cannot ignore the issue of fair hearing,” he said.
Udeh said that if the panel was unable to dispense with all the matters within the six months window allotted to it, they would seek for extension of time.
NAN further reports that of the cases before the panel, only about five have been concluded.
Meanwhile, one of the high profile cases called up on Tuesday was a case of attempted kidnap filed by Kenenna Obiatuegwu against SP Ugochukwu Ozoude and others.
The other respondents are Emmanuel Ehirim, Mr Prince Raymond and Prof. Ernest Onwasigwe.
However, when the matter was called up, counsel to Onwasigwe, Chief Anthony Ani (SAN) told the panel that he had a motion for preliminary objection, adding that the panel lacked the jurisdiction to entertain the matter.
Counsel to the petitioner, Chief George Enekwechi, told the panel that he was served the process for preliminary objection in court.
Enekwechi urged the panel to allow him to respond to the objection orally in order not to waste time on the matter.
However, the chairman of the panel said that they would prefer that he documented his response and file same.
The matter was, therefore, adjourned until Feb. 11, 2020 for hearing of the preliminary objection.
Recall that Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State had in October inaugurated the panel following the #ENDSARS Protest. (NAN)