Court restrains EFCC, ICPC, DSS from detaining former Governor
A Federal High Court in Abuja has restrained the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Department of State Services (DSS) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC) from detaining ex-Governor of Zamfara State, Senator Abdul’aziz Yari.
Justice Donatus Okorowo issued the order on Monday while ruling on an ex-parte motion filed and argued for Yari by his lawyer, Michael Aondoaka, (SAN).
Justice Okorowo, who said the restraining order should subsist pending the hearing and determination of the motion, ordered the respondents – EFCC, ICPC, DSS – to show cause, by the next adjourned date, why the prayers sought on the motion ex-parte should not be granted.
“The respondents are however restrained from detaining the applicant until the return date for the order to show cause,” the judge said and adjourned till June 8.
Yari is, in the ex-parte motion marked: FHC/ANJ/CS/785/2023 praying the court to restrain the respondents and their agents from arresting and detaining him to prevent him from attending or participating in the proclamation of the 10th Senate by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on June 13 pending the hearing and determination of his motion on notice.
Citing 15 grounds why his prayer should be granted, Yari stated that he was desirous of contesting the position of the President of the Senate of the 10th National Assembly in accordance with the 1999 Constitution (as amended), and pursuant to the Senate Standing Orders 2022 as (amended).
He said his aspiration to contest the position of President of the Senate has received overwhelming support from the general public and amongst distinguished senators-elect irrespective of party affiliations.
Yari added that the support he has continued to garner across party lines has drawn consternation from some members of his political party, the All Progressives’ Congress (APC), who have allegedly resorted to using the respondents and their agents to harass and threaten to arrest and detain the applicant on trumped-up charges for the period leading to the first sitting of the Senate when nominations and election of presiding officers shall be constituted.
“The respondents and their agents have threatened to violate the applicant’s rights as enshrined in the Constitution by unlawfully threatening to arrest and detain the applicant up to the period of the First Sitting of the 10th Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on the 13th June, 2023, without a warrant of arrest and informing him in writing the reasons for the arrest and detention.
“The respondents and their agents violated the applicant’s fundamental human rights as enshrined under Section 34 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) by threatening to arrest and detain him in communicado for the period leading to and after the First Sitting of the 10 National Assembly for the purposes of preventing him from being nominated and elected as the President of the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“The respondents and their agents are mandated to operate within the ambit of their establishment laws, and to respect the fundamental human rights of the Applicant as enshrined in the Constitution,” he said.
The ex-Governor stated that if his prayer was not granted, his rights would have be breached by the respondents.