The former Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, on Tuesday, urged the Federal High Court, Abuja, to make an order setting aside the seizure of some of his property by the state government.
The ex-governor also asked Justice Ahmed Mohammed to restrain the state government from investigating him or implement the recommendations of the seven panels set up to probe his administration pending the hearing and determination of the substantive on the matter.
Okorocha, who ruled Imo State from June 2006 and May 2019, made the request in a motion on notice dated June 25, 2021 and filed by his lawyer, Oba Maduabuchi (SAN).
The Senator representing Imo West Senatorial District had in a suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/558/2020 filed on May 28, 2020, urged the court to restrain the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and other agencies from probing him.
The EFCC, the Imo State Attorney General and members of the seven panels set up by Governor Hope Uzodinma to probe previous administrations in the state were listed as respondents in the suit.
However, only the EFCC was represented in court on Tuesday.
Maduabuchi told the court that the latest application sought a restoration of the status quo despite the white paper issued by the government panels.
He said: “It is surprising that the attorney general of the state, who was served processes in the suit since last year, has not filed anything.”
The counsel told the court immediately an order on stay of proceedings against the panels was granted by the court, the panels quickly accelerated their proceedings and concluded their findings.
“Copies of the white paper issued by the panels were exhibited in the application,” Madubuachi added.
He said the EFCC had always been in court and filed its defence.
“For the attorney general and the panels, they can go to hell.
“But I know my lord is not completely powerless,” he concluded.
The EFCC counsel, G.C. Ofulue, did not oppose Maduabuchi’s application.
Justice Mohammed adjourned the matter till July 15 for hearing in the plaintiff’s motion on notice.
He also ordered that hearing notices be issued to the respondents.
Properties listed in the motion were – Eastern Palm University Ogboko; Royal Spring Palm Hotels and Apartments, Akachi Road, Owerri, Imo; Imo Broad Casting Corporation Staff Quarters, Orji or Rochas Foundation College, Orji.
Others are Plot 5 Naze Residential Layout and all property contained on pages 226 to 272 of the government white paper on the Florence Duruoha Igwe judicial Commission of inquiry into Land Administration in Imo State from June 2006 to May 2019
Join the conversation
INVESTIGATION: Inside UNILAG’s multi-million naira budgetary abuse and academic discord
The University of Lagos located in Nigeria’s commercial capital, Lagos, has been embroiled in controversies with allegations bothering on misappropriation of...
SPECIAL REPORT: Displaced residents of Zamfara battle hunger, as underfunding derails Nigeria’s nutrition goals
On paper, Muhammad Zayyanu is seven years old. The quiet boy who looks shorter for his age could not recollect...
INVESTIGATION: N7.3bn paid for unnamed projects; how Nigerian govt spent N2.2trn in six months
Analysing nearly 3,000 payments made by various Federal Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) over the previous six months (January...
INVESTIGATION… Delay rocks Nigerian govt’s promise of N30,000 covid-19 relief for artisans, others
Before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in February, 2020, Chukwudi Okoroigwe’s daily earnings as a bus driver was hardly enough to cater to the...
INVESTIGATION… Ten years after, communities count losses as AfDB, Cross River govt abandon road project
Ten years after the Cross River State government and African Development Bank (AFDB) jointly awarded the Yahe-Wanokom-Wanikade-Benue border road for...