Court Vacates Frozen Order Placed on Peace Corps’ Commandant Bank Accounts

The Federal High Court in Abuja has banks to lift the ban it placed on 24 bank accounts belonging to the Peace Corps of Nigeria since June 23, 2017.
Justice John Tsoho in a ruling on Tuesday vacated the order after upholding the motion filed by the group and its national commandant, Dickson Akoh, who are also being prosecuted by the Federal Government before the same court.
The Judge had placed the post-no-debit on the accounts on the 24 accounts on June 23, following an ex parte motion by the prosecution.
The accounts were frozen at the instance of the Police though an ex-parte order it secured on June 23.
But Akor and the group, through a motion filed on July 5, 2017, challenged the order made by the court, accusing the prosecution of “suppressing and misrepresenting facts” in the ex parte motion through which the prosecution obtained the order.
John Ojogu, on behalf of Peace Corps, filed a motion on notice, prayed the court to vacate its post-no-debit order freezing its accounts.
Also, Peace Corps prayed for an order directing Diamond Bank, and Stanbic IBTC to unfreeze its accounts.
Delivering ruling on the applicant’s motion on notice, the court relied on the sole issue formulated by James Idachaba, counsel to the Police.
The issue was: “Whether the ex-parte order made by the court on June 23, 2017 is not liable to be discharged or vacated by the court.’’
Justice Tsoho described the arguments of Idachaba, counsel to Police, in urging the court to dismiss the application of Peace Corps as “great effort without effect.”
The court held that the motion ex-parte dated June 13, was filed in bad fate and amounted to gross abuse of court process.
The Judge noted that the police did not controvert the affidavit evidence of Peace Corps that facts were suppressed and issues misrepresented by the Police to obtain the ex-parte order.
The Judge held that the police suppressed facts and misrepresented issues before securing the ex-parte order.
He said the police lawyer failed to show in his affidavit in support of the motion ex-parte how the Attorney-General of the Federation authorised him to act on his behalf.
“This inconsistent posturing of the Police adversely affected the validity of the ex- parte order granted by this court on June 23, 2017,” Tsoho said.
In addition, the court agreed with the submissions of counsel to Peace Corps that an “interim order” must be short.
“I therefore hold that if the Police desired anything more, it should not have come to this court by way of motion ex-parte, but through motion on notice, seeking an injunction,” Mr. Tsoho added.
In view of this, “the interim order made by this court on June 23, 2017 has been discharged; the order is set

Author: News Editor

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