Chief Ikeje Asogwa, pleads for peaceful settlement
The Enugu State Panel on Police Brutality/Extra-Judicial Killings, on Tuesday granted a request by the Chairman, Enugu State Universal Basic Education Board (ENSUBEB), Chief Ikeje Asogwa, to adopt the Alternative Dispute Resolution means to resolve the dispute between him and Onagu Ogbodo, retired ENSUBEB permanent secretary.
Chairman of the Panel, Justice Kingsley Udeh(retd), gave the two parties one week to resolve their quarrel, and report back to the panel on March 25.
The hearing of the petition filed by Onagu alleging police brutality against him at the behest of Asogwa was scheduled to begin on Tuesday, March 16, but when the matter was called up, Counsel to Asogwa, Emeka Asogwa, informed the panel that both parties had commenced discussions on the amicable resolution of the case outside the Panel.
He asked that they should be given one week to conclude the discussions and report back to the Panel.
Recall that in an 11-page petition submitted to the panel through his lawyer Ifeanyi Okoli, Ogbodo alleged that the police stripped and beat him to stupor sometime last year inside ENSUBEB premises, Enugu, on the orders of Asogwa.
He demanded a compensation of five hundred million naira, and dismissal of Asogwa from office for allegedly subjecting him to inhuman treatment.
Okoli said his client (Ogbodo) welcomed Asogwa’s request for an amicable resolution of the dispute outside the Panel.
He said: “The world is full of disputes and resolutions. When there is a dispute, either you go to court to resolve it, or the parties can use Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to resolve it.
“Some well-meaning individuals have intervened between the parties seeking to resolve the dispute between them, which is a welcome development for us, and the courts are enjoined to encourage the resolution of disputes between parties.
“So, in view of this, it’s only natural that we as lawyers must also be seen to encourage alternative and amicable resolution of disputes between parties as it breeds societal peace and cohesion.
“So, that was why Counsel to the respondent sought for a short adjournment to enable the parties concretize this amicable resolution which we don’t have any objection to.
“So, we are hoping that the first respondent (Asogwa) will do the needful to achieve the formal resolution of the matter.”
The case was adjourned for Thursday, March 25, to enable the two parties finally resolve the dispute, and report back to the Panel.