Law News
Police storm Rivers Judiciary complex

About 30 policemen, yesterday, forced their way into the Rivers State judiciary complex in Port Harcourt, leading Justice Daisy Okocha into the place for a meeting with judges in the state.

Vanguard gathered that Justice Okocha had notified judges in the state last week of her intention to meet with them yesterday.
There was, however, a slight drama at the gate of the judiciary complex when the Caretaker Committee Chairman, Port Harcourt City Local Government Area, Mr. Nnamdi Nweche, made attempt to go into the court premises, shouting that he is a lawyer.

Fierce looking anti-riot policemen ordered him and his loyalists to stay away from the premises.
Nweche, who later spoke to newsmen some distance away from the gate to the complex, said it was shocking that anyone could break into the place while judicial workers in the state were on strike.

He said: “I am shocked to learn that some unknown persons are holding a meeting inside the court building. This is unacceptable because judiciary workers are on strike and the gates have been locked to prevent illegal entry into the court premises. Nobody has a right to go into the court premises when the judiciary workers are on strike.”

The state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Dan Bature, who breezed into the court premises in company of some top officers of his command, warned media men and others who were milling around to leave the area.
As if waiting for the Police boss to voice the words, his men started firing canisters of tear gas, an action that sent everybody running for safety.

Meantime, the Rivers State Government has condemned the action of the state Police command, saying it was shocking that a state Police Commissioner could supervise the illegal action of his men.

The state Commissioner of Information and Communications, Mrs. Ibim Semenitari, who spoke to newsmen, described the forceful entry into the judicial premises as illegal.
She said that the action of the Police yesterday was part of an alleged move to open the state House of Assembly complex for anti-Amaechi lawmakers to impeach the governor.

“We woke up to the shocking news of an illegality supervised by the Commissioner of Police. Rivers State Government is worried about the series of unprovoked attack on Rivers people. Rivers people were tear-gassed. We are scared that we are returning to a Police state in Rivers State.”

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