In a recent development at the Chief Magistrate’s Court in Yaba, Lagos, an application by the Nigeria Police Force seeking to arraign renowned Afrobeats singer, Seun Kuti, over an alleged assault on a police officer, has been dismissed. Magistrate Adeola Olatunbosun adjourned the case until July 3 to await legal advice from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) on the matter.
Dismissal of Police Application: The court rejected the application put forth by the police counsel to arraign Seun Kuti, as they had preferred a charge against him. The defense, led by Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana, vehemently opposed the move, highlighting that the police had disregarded previous court orders and acted in contempt.
Defense Arguments: Femi Falana argued that Seun Kuti was entitled to a minimum of 48 hours’ notice to respond to the charges, as mandated by Section 82 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Law of Lagos. He also emphasized that the police had violated a valid court order from May 16, which directed that the case be transferred to the state government for prosecution, as the police were not authorized to investigate and prosecute the matter.
Awaited DPP’s Advice: Considering the objections raised by the defense and the need to uphold previous court orders, Magistrate Olatunbosun ruled to await the legal advice from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) before proceeding with the case. This decision garnered applause from observers in the courtroom, although the court disapproved of such behavior.
It is alleged that Seun Kuti committed the offense on May 13 on the Third Mainland Bridge, where he reportedly drove recklessly, intentionally obstructed a police vehicle, and assaulted Inspector Mohammed Aminu, who was in uniform and on official duty. The court’s decision to dismiss the police application ensures that further legal advice will be sought before any potential trial takes place.