Court to hear ex-minister Olu Agunloye’s N1 billion suit against EFCC May 9

April 19, 2024

2.4 min readCategories: News

 

On Thursday, the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court fixed May 9 for hearing in a N1 billion suit filed by Olu Agunloye, former minister of power and steel under ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo, against EFCC.

Justice Emeka Nwite fixed the date after EFCC’s lawyer, Abba Mohammed, sought an adjournment to enable him to regularise his processes before the court.

When the matter was called for a report of service, the attorney general of the federation, who is the second defendant in the suit, was not represented in court.

The judge then asked Mr Agunloye’s counsel, Adeola Adedipe, if the AGF had been served, and he responded in the affirmative.

The lawyer told the court that though the EFCC filed a motion to regularise their processes, he was not opposing the application.

Mr Mohammed, however, applied that the court file be given to him to verify if their processes were in the court record but Adedipe objected to the request.

“I object to that, my lord. I have never seen such practice before where a court file is shown to a party,” he said.

Mr Adedipe further argued that since the matter was ripe for hearing, he sought the leave of court to proceed if the anti-graft agency’s lawyer had no defence.

But Mr Mohammed prayed the court for an adjournment to enable him to put their house in order, even as the AGF was not represented in court.

The judge, who adjourned the matter until May 9 for a hearing, directed that the hearing notice be served on the second defendant.

On March 1, the ex-minister filed a suit against EFCC over allegations that the commission had published his name on its website’s wanted list.

In the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/167/2024, filed by his team of lawyers led by Adedipe, Mr Agunloye joined the AGF as the second defendant.

In the originating summons, dated and filed Feb. 8, the ex-minister sought six reliefs, including a declaration that the EFCC cannot lawfully exercise its discretion, powers and or functions under Sections 1(2\(c\, 6, 7, 13 of the EFCC Act, 2004, ditto Section 4 of the Police Act 2020, by declaring him wanted on its official website or any other related platform.

Mr Agunloye said this was without recourse to any safeguard in Sections 34({1)(a), 35, 37, 39, 41 and 42 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), including a judicial intervention, order or leave of court pursuant to Sections 1(1), 8(1) & 42(2) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), 2015.

Therefore, he sought an order for the EFCC, its agents, privies, representatives, and other related affiliates to remove his picture, name, references, details, and particulars from the wanted list published on its official website or any other related platform.

He also sought a perpetual injunction restraining the EFCC and the AGF, “jointly or severally, whether by themselves or their staff, from further declaring the plaintiff wanted,” including general damages of N1 billion against the defendants, “especially the first defendant.”

(NAN)

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