A Lagos High Court sitting at Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS) on Thursday restrained the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) from arresting the Elegushi of Ikate Kingdom in Lagos Oba Saheed Ademola Elegushi and two others.
Justice Gafar Safari ruled that the order subsists pending the hearing and determination of a fundamental rights enforcement suit filed on behalf of Oba Elegushi and others.
The Judge made the order in a suit by the monarch and two members of the Elegushi Royal Family – Chief Abdulahi Elegushi and Prince Akeem Elegushi – accusing the defendants of harassment, manhunt and attempt to arrest them over a civil land matter.
Other defendants in the suit along with the IGP are Bela Vista Property and Development Company Ltd; Deputy Commissioner of Police, Kolo Yusuf; DSP Ibrahim Agu; one Supol Udofia and Lagos Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice as the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th respondents respectively.
The royal family also accused the respondents of an alleged plot to grab land belonging to the family at the Eti-Osa Local Government Area (LGA).
The applicants alleged that while the suit is pending, the defendants resorted to self-help, especially the deployment of mobile policemen from Mopol 46 to the land with clear instructions to arrest any member of Elegushi Royal Family found anywhere on or near the land in question.
The Royal Family further accused the IGP of preparing a fake police report that was presented to the Court confirming that the Royal Family ceded ownership of their land to Bela Vista Property.
During the resumed hearing of the suit on Thursday, the 15th July, 2021 the Monarch and his co-applicants, through their counsel, Mrs. Adepeju Omotayo, informed the Judge that the Police had sent its men to Ikate seeking their arrest in order to frustrate the suit before the Court.
However, the first respondent’s counsel, Anthony Osara, refuted the claim.
Furthermore, the Counsel to the second to fifth respondents Victor Okoye, urged the Court to discountenance the applicants’ request for a restraining order, adding that the police were never deployed to the house of the Royal Family to arrest anybody.
In a bench ruling, Justice Safari ordered all the parties to maintain status quo and refrain from doing anything to frustrate the proceedings pending the hearing and determination of the suit.
The matter was adjourned to the 17th of August 2021 for hearing.