Court sets aside conviction of EFCC boss for contempt

THE High Court of the Federal Capital Territory has set aside the contempt proceedings and all the orders of conviction for contempt against the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Abdulrasheed Bawa.

Justice Chizoba Oji set aside the proceedings today after hearing an application brought by the EFCC Chairman.

The application was brought pursuant to Section 6(6) (a) and Section 36(1) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended), Section 91 of the Sheriffs and Civil Process Act, Cap S6 Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 2004 and other relevant enactments.

The court found that at the time of the order, the EFCC Chairman was not in contempt of court as he had complied with the order that the Respondent’s Range Rover be released and by several internal memoranda, the Applicant had initiated the commission’s internal mechanism to ensure the payment of the sum of N40, 000,000 to the Respondent.

Justice Chizoba Oji, in a ruling on Tuesday, had held that Bawa was in contempt of the order of the court made on November 21, 2018, directing the commission to return to an applicant, his Range Rover (super charge) and the sum of N40 million.

She also ordered that Bawa should be committed to prison at Kuje Correctional Centre Abuja for his disobedience, and continued disobedience of the said order until he purges himself of the contempt.

Justice Oji further directed the Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba to ensure that the order of this court is executed forthwith.

The judge rejected the arguments put forward by the lawyer to the EFCC, Francis Jirbo to justify his client’s action.

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