Police and judiciary (courts), on Sunday, resolved to partner to ensure no innocent person is imprisoned as both pledged to implement the Administration of Criminal Justice Law (ACJL) in Enugu State.
This was contained in a communiqué issued after a one-day Partnership Meeting Between the Police and Judiciary/Ministry of Justice on the “Implementation of Administration of Criminal Justice Law (ACJL) as it affects Arrest, Search, Detention and Bail (ASDB) Protocol’’.
The partnership meeting was organized by the Enugu State Police Command in collaboration with the Nigeria Policing Programme (NPP) on Saturday.
“The police and court (judiciary) should ensure that those who have no business in prison should not be in prison; while cases should be thoroughly investigated before taking it to court.
“We agreed that a police officers should not violate the fundamental human rights of persons while effecting arrest; while a person can only be arrested for committing offence stated by law and not for civil wrongs.
“That the police should not use violence in effecting arrest unless the situation so demands. In that case, the force to be used must be reasonably necessary and proportionate,’’ it said.
The statement noted that the police and the judiciary agreed to implement the ACJL as it affects the ASDB Protocol, while urging all stakeholders in justice delivery to work as partners in progress and `not enemies at war front’.
It said all stakeholders in the administration of criminal justice should be made to undertake continuous sensitization on the enforcement of fundamental human rights.
According to the statement, cases should not be discharged or struck out by judicial officials on technical grounds.
“Nigeria Police should embrace the international best practices of policing especially in the areas of Arrest, Search, Detention and Bail (ASDB) protocol; while police officers effecting search warrant should
first of all surrender themselves for search before conducting the search.
“Any suspect arrested with or without warrant must be taken to the police station immediately.
“Recovered property not connected with a case should be released to the owner forthwith; while recovered, found and unclaimed property can be disposed through auction sale in accordance with the law,’’ it said.
The communiqué was jointly signed by the Assistant Commissioner of Police in-charge of Finance and Administration, Mr Oliver Amaechi, on behalf of the Enugu State Commissioner of Police, Mr Mohammed Danmallam.
While Mr Sylvester Eze, Administrative Chief Magistrate for Igbo-Eze North/Ette Magisterial Districts, signed on behalf of the Chief Judge of Enugu State, Justice Priscilla Emehelu.
The meeting was attended by all chief magistrates, Director of Public Prosecution, representatives of the Attorney General and Chief Judge of the state as well as Divisional Police Officers, area commanders and other senior police officers in Enugu State.