A mild drama took place on Tuesday when the Corps Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Commission, Osita Chidoka, appeared before the National Conference Committee on National Security.
He specifically berated the judiciary over its judgement on illegal arms importation by the co-owner of Amigo Supermarket in Wuse 2 area of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, saying such verdict could only have been given in Nigeria.
This comment stirred up confusion among the delegates.
Chidoka expressed dissatisfaction over the way the case was handled, adding that if it were in other countries, the foreigners involved would have been deported by the government.
The co-owner of Amigo Supermarket, Mustapha Fawaz, and three other Lebanese, were charged with terrorism and alleged importation of firearms but in June last year, the case was struck out by a Magistrate Court in Karu presided over by Muyiwa Oyeyipo following an application by the prosecutor, Cliff Osagie.
Chidoka, who decried the country’s security record keeping, said he was surprised that foreigners who were involved in illegal arms importation in Kano were fully back in their businesses.
He said, “Some people were caught in Kano keeping arms underground, they were tried and are now back to their normal business. There is nowhere in the world where such people will not be deported.”
Chidoka therefore challenged the Nigerian judiciary to tell the public what it wanted as evidence in terrorism cases.
Reacting to Chidoka’s allegation, a member of the committee, Mr. Damian Dodo (SAN), faulted the allegation and immediately asked Chidoka to withdraw his position.
But the FRSC boss refused to withdraw the statement.
Another delegate and a former Director of SSS, who bluntly refused to identify himself, stood by Chidoka when he asked Chidoka “not to withdraw the statement.”
The committee member said Chidoka was a Nigerian and the Nigerian people had the right to comment on any judgment of the court.
In his own reaction, a former governor of old Borno State, Alhaji Mohammed Goni, who also shared his ugly experience in Nigerian courts, told Chidoka not to withdraw his position, saying the judiciary in Nigeria was not doing enough.
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