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Court Vacates Contempt Order, Stops IG From Arresting EFCC Chairman

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The Federal Capital Territory High Court, on Thursday, vacated an earlier order directing the Inspector-General of Police, Olukayode Egbetokun, to arrest the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ola Olukoyede, for disobeying a ruling of the court directing EFCC operatives to vacate a property at Number 6, Aso Drive, Abuja.

The EFCC had approached the court, urging the judge to vacate the contempt order, while noting that Olukoyede was not aware of an order mandating the commission’s operatives to vacate the property.

In a statement on Thursday, the spokesperson for the EFCC, Dele Oyewale, confirmed that the judge has upheld the submission of the EFCC counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, while purging  Olukoyede of contempt of the court.

Oyewale said, “Justice Abubakar Musa of the Federal Capital Territory High Court on Thursday, January 25, 2024, vacated an earlier order of the court directing the Inspector-General of Police to arrest the Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ola Olukoyede, for disobeying the ruling of the court directing operatives of the commission to vacate a property at Number 6, Aso Drive, Abuja.

“The judge upheld the submission of the  EFCC Counsel,  Rotimi Oyedepo, SAN. He (Oyedepo) prayed the court to vacate the contempt proceedings against the EFCC’s boss, assuring the judge that all the issues involved between the parties in the suit would be resolved.  Defence counsel, Adeyemi Pitan, did not object to the submissions of Oyedepo,”

He further quoted Oyedepo as arguing that, “Olukoyede is an officer of the law and respecter of the rule of law,  with fervent commitment towards moving the EFCC towards enhanced professionalism and accountable conducts, could not have willfully ignored or disobeyed the order of the court.

“I am here to assure my Lord, that Mr Ola Olukoyede who is now the Executive Chairman of the EFCC, whose appointment was confirmed by the Senate of Federal Republic of Nigeria on the 18 October 2023 and being a legal practitioner of many years at the bar may not knowingly disobey the order of the court”.

In response, Justice Musa who vacated the order and purged Olukoyede of the contempt proceedings, was quoted as saying, “I knew that the EFCC Chairman was not aware of this, that is why I want the chairman to come.”

He also adjourned the matter till February 7, 2024, for a hearing of the substantive suit.


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