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CJN Asks Appeal Court to Stop His Trial at CCT


Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, has approached the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja, seeking to halt his trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).
Justice Onnighen , who is facing trial at the CCT, for failure to declare all his assets, is asking the Appeal Court for an order to stop the tribunal to hear his case.
He is also asking the court to stop the suit requesting him to step down as the CJN.
The Ministry of Justice had last week filed a suit asking the Onnoghen to step down as the CJN.
In a motion on notice, counsel to the applicant, Chief Adegboyega Awomolo (SAN), asked the Appeal Court to restrain the CCT from going ahead with the trial slated for January 22 (today).
Awomolo said it was settled that once a matter is entered at the Appeal Court, trial courts cease jurisdiction, pending the determination at the appellant court.
However, counsel to the federal government, Emmanuel Omonuwa, a civil litigation officer with the Federal Ministry of Justice, said he got to know of the matter Monday morning and had no time to file a response.
He said the court process was served on ministry at close of work on Friday.
He said he came to court because out of respect for the court.
He prayed for a short adjournment to file a response.
Awomolo did not oppose the prayer for adjournment but sought order of the court to ask the respondent to maintain status quo.
But Omonuwah countered that there were three orders stopping the trial already, saying they are all subsisting and have not been set aside.
In a short ruling, Justice Abdul Aboki, held there was no need for another order while adjourning till January 24 to hear Onnoghen’s motion on notice.

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