A Federal High Court in Abuja, on Wednesday, approved Sen. Rochas Okorocha’s request for an injunction granting him permission to go to the United States for medical treatment.
After receiving a motion to that effect from Okorocha’s attorney, Ola Olanipekun, SAN, Justice Inyang Ekwo issued the order, but issued a warning to the legislator about failing to attend subsequent adjourned date of hearing.
Last Thursday, Okorocha, who represents the Imo West Senatorial District, came before the court with the motion.
Okorocha filed the application through his attorney, Daniel Alumun before Justice Ekwo,
When the matter was called, Alumun quickly let the court know that he was unable to serve the motion on the complainant/respondent, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
As a result, Justice Ekwo postponed the case until today so that the application could be heard.
Olanipekun, Okorocha’s attorney, informed the court during the resumed hearing that he received a move on notice with the following markings: FHC /ABJ/CS/28/2022, dated June 22 and submitted June 27.
The request, according to the attorney, asked for an order allowing Okorocha, the applicant, to leave Nigeria for medical treatment and return before November 7, the next postponed date for his trial.
Chile Okoroma, the Director of Legal Services for the EFCC, disagreed with the plea.
He described how the applicant violated the administrative bail that had previously been granted to him by the anti-corruption organisation.
The judge, however, said that since Okorocha had appeared in court, arraigned and the trial commenced, everyone should look forward to the future development.
“I am going to grant this application. But if I grant this application and the defendant fails to appear on the next adjourned date, I will make an order declaring him wanted,” the judge said.
Okoroma removed all of his initial objections to the application, saying he was pleased with Justice Ekwo’s involvement.
In his decision, Justice Ekwo stated that he thought the application should be approved because it was based on medical justifications.
According to him, the petitioner would then have the chance to stand trial.
“Upon perusing the prayers sought by the applicant and the averments in the counter affidavit of the respondent, I am of the opinion that this application be granted because it is of medical grounds.
“Prayers 1, 2, 3, and 4 are hereby granted as prayed,” he said.
He ordered Okorocha to return his travel documents to the court registry no later than three days upon his return.
“There shall be consequences if the 1st defendant (Okorocha) fails to appear on the next adjourned date,” Ekwo ruled.
The judge adjourned the matter until Nov. 7, Nov. 8, Nov. 9, Nov. 10 and Nov. 11 for trial continuation.
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