Northern Nigerian Breaking News

Judge orders arrest of persons behind breach of his privacy

Justice Inyang Ekwo of a Federal High Court, Abuja has ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to fish out persons behind breaching his privacy through text messages on his phone in a fraud suit preferred against Sen. Stella Oduah and others.

Justice Ekwo, who gave the order on Thursday, shared copies of the messages to lawyers representing the parties in the open court.

The earlier plan to arraign Oduah today

was, however, suspended by the judge over alleged threat to his life by yet to be identified persons.

He brought out a publication by the group in which his life was severely threatened over the planned trial.

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He held that proceedings would not commence in the matter until the culprits are produced in the next adjourned date.

The judge also directed the deputy chief Registrar of the FHC in charge of Litigation to liaise with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) to obtain the identities of the promoters of the offending organisation for the purpose of arresting them.

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He said that sanctity of the court must be maintained adding that Nigeria was not a banana republic or animal kingdom where acts of lawlessness could be condoned.

He ordered the prosecution to produce the culprits in court as part of the efforts to also ensure that the defendants in the case are safe and well secured to stand the trail.

Counsel to EFCC, Ofem Uket, expressed sadness over the development and vowed that the anti-graft agency would do the needful to bring the culprits to book.

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He however prayed the court not to allow unknown person’s acting as external third party to scuttle the trial.

The judge consequently adjourned the suit until July 17 for a report.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Justice Ekwo had, on June 5, warned those sending him private messages in the N5 billion suit filed by the EFCC against Mrs Oduah, who was former Aviation Minister in the government of President Goodluck Jonathan, to desist from intruding into his privacy.

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The EFCC had sued Oduah alongside Gloria Odita, Nwosu Emmanuel Nnamdi and Chukwuma Irene Chinyere.

Others include Global Offshore and Marine Ltd, Tip Top Global Resources Ltd, Crystal Television Ltd, Sobora International Ltd and others.

The senator, who represented Anambra North Senatorial District at the 9th National Assembly, was scheduled to be arraigned on alleged N5 billion fraud and financial misappropriation while she served as minister during the Jonathan Administration.

In the 25-count charge marked: FHC/ABJ/CR/316/2020, they are accused of conspiracy, money laundering and maintaining anonymous bank accounts with a commercial bank.(NAN)

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