The Invasion of Justice Mary Odili’s Residence: A Unique Perspective

On Saturday the 30th of October 2021, I woke up alongside other Nigerians to the troubling news of unlawful invasion of the residence of a Supreme Court Judge. Justice Mary Odili’s residence located at 7 Imo Street, Maitama, Abuja was invaded on the night of the 29th of October 2021, by a team of over 50 security agents drawn from the Nigerian Police Force and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

What made the invasion troubling was the fact that she was not just a Supreme Court Judge, but second in line to the Chief Justice of the Federation, Tanko Ibrahim Muhammad. Furthermore, she is also the wife of Chief Peter Odili, a former Governor of Rivers state.

Events of that day may still be sketchy, but one thing is clear, a search warrant was granted to a Chief Superintendent of Police Lawrence Ajodo, who claimed to be a Consultant at the office of AGF Abubakar Malami (the Attorney General of the Federation) by an Abuja Magistrate Judge at the Wuse Zone 6 Magistrate Court.

CSP Ajodo had earlier claimed that the warrant was procured based on an ongoing investigation by a whistleblower who claimed that ‘criminal activities’ were taking place at the residence of the Supreme Court Justice. Unfortunately, after laying siege at her residence all through the night, CSP Lawrence Ajodo was not able to gain access into the property.

In a twist of events, the Magistrate who issued the warrant reportedly revoked the document on the grounds that he was presented with misleading information when issuing it. Furthermore, a spokesman for the Ministry of Justice Umar Gwandu advised that the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami has no hand in the raid. He said that CSP Ajodo was never a consultant and as such the AGF has made no contact with him whatsoever.

How this case will end still remains to be seen, as it bears a striking resemblance to a similar incidence which took place in 2016, where homes of Supreme Court Justices were broken into in the dead of the night. The victims in that incident were the late Justice Sylvester Ngwuta, Justice John Okoro amongst others. Their homes were invaded on the grounds that they were part of a corruption investigation. However, years after no charges have been preferred nor any convictions secured through any Court of competent jurisdiction.

We still do not know who ordered this action nor what is the rationale behind this event. All that is clear for now is that this is an ugly incident which should not be repeated in our nation Nigeria.

References

https://www.bbc.com/pidgin/59085996

https://www.vanguardngr.com/2021/11/attack-on-justice-mary-odilis-residence-make-report-of-your-investigation-public-senate-tells-igp/

https://www.vanguardngr.com/2021/11/invasion-of-the-residence-of-justice-odili-call-for-heavy-punishment-for-perpetrators/

https://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/headlines/493060-raid-on-mary-odilis-home-appeared-like-mission-to-kill-maim-her-supreme-court.html

https://guardian.ng/news/nigeria/senate-condems-invasion-of-justice-mary-odilis-residence/

https://www.bbc.com/pidgin/tori-59250921

https://nairametrics.com/2021/11/03/supreme-court-reacts-to-raid-of-justice-mary-odilis-residence/

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