Judge’s bid to be freed from EFCC custody fails

Judge’s bid to be freed from EFCC custody fails

Monday, November 21, 2016 7:51 pm

Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia

Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia

A Federal High Court on Monday refused an ex-parte application filed by a judge, Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia, seeking her release from the custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Justice Muslim Hassan held in Lagos that the judge’s prayer could not be heard by motion ex-parte.

Hassan said that he was of the view that the interest of justice would better be served if the EFCC was put on notice.

He directed Ofili-Ajumogobia, also a Federal High Court judge, to put the anti-graft agency on notice.

Hassan fixed further hearing on the case for Nov. 28.

The EFCC had preferred a 30-count charge against Ofili-Ajumogobia and Godwin Obla (SAN) over alleged perversion of justice.

The commission had detained the duo in its custody pending the conclusion of its investigation.

Ofili-Ajumogobia filed the ex-parte motion through her lawyer, Mr Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), seeking enforcement of her fundamental rights.

She urged the court to order her release.

In his argument, Onigbajo had faulted the continued detention of the judge.

The counsel argued that the commission had an option to charge Ofili-Ajumogobia to court if it was sure she had committed any offence.

He said: “The EFCC has the option to charge her to court but it has not done so.

“ She is ready to defend herself vigorously against any charge that may be slammed on her.

“She is ready to deposit her passport and abide by any other conditions that the court may impose on her.

“There is no need under the law to continue to keep her in detention except to humiliate her, because the offence is bail-able.”(NAN)


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