Former governor of Osun State, Olagunsoye Oyinlola, has accused the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Adoke, SAN, of illegally appointing his Special Assistant, Simon Egede, as Director of Public Prosecution in breach of public service rules.
Oyinlola’s accusation contained in a petition to President Goodluck Jonathan and dated February 20, and submitted at the Presidential Villa on February 21, was titled “Conduct unbecoming on the part of your Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice.”
Parts of the letter read, “I wish to bring your attention to the unacceptable conduct of your Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice in the discharge of what, ordinarily, ought to be a sacred mandate.
“Mr. Mohammed Adoke has been parading one Samuel C. Egede, who is his Special Assistant, variously as Acting Director of Public Prosecution and Director of Public Prosecution, in flagrant breach of public service rules and general conviction.”
Oyinlola asked Jonathan to order an investigation into the “clearly anomalous and scandalous situation.”
Documents attached to the letter indicated that invoking the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, Oyinlola investigated Egede’s service records in the Federal Ministry of Justice after Egede, in his capacity as DPP, authored a legal advice instructing the police not to go ahead to press charges against MTN Nigeria Communications Limited after the firm allegedly frustrated the assignment of a Special Investigative Panel of the National Judicial Council by providing incomplete call data records to security agencies.
In the ‘legal advice and prosecution’, dated October 29, 2013 and addressed to the Commissioner of Police, “X” Squad Section, “D” Department (FCID), Nigeria Police Force Headquarters, Abuja, Egede, who signed as Acting Director, Public Prosecutions of the Federation for Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation, concluded that upon consideration of all the facts, no case was established against the telecommunications company.
In another letter, dated October 30, 2013, Egede, who signed as Director, Public Prosecutions of the Federation for Honourable Attorney General of the Federation, informed Oyinlola’s lawyer, Adebisi Raimi, that he (Egede) had conveyed his legal opinion to the police.
As a result of the development, Oyinlola, in a letter dated January 20, 2014, wrote the Attorney-General of the Federation, Federal Ministry of Justice, demanding information on the status of the DPP.
In a reply dated January 21, 2014, one Ichibor Godwin Joseph, who signed for the Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, informed Oyinlola that “Mr. A. A. Akintewe is the substantive Director of Public Prosecution since the 30th day of October 2013 while Simon C. Egede is the Special Assistant (Prosecutions) to the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice.”