Abuja â€”Â The Code of Conduct Tribunal sitting in Abuja on Friday renewed a bench warrant for the arrest of former EFCC chairman Nuhu Ribadu.
Justice Constance Momoh, the chairman of the tribunal, had on Nov. 20 ordered Ribaduâ€™s arrest for failure to appear before her.
She said the warrant issued against Ribadu remainedÂ substantive except he (Ribadu) willingly came before the tribunal to take his plea.
â€œI have considered the submission of both parties in this suit and resolved in the following ways that the bench warrant stays substantive. The bench warrant remains until it is executed but if, however, the accused voluntarily appears before this tribunal on or before the execution date, itÂ shall remain abated.
â€œThis case is adjourned till Jan. 7 for plea or for further hearing,â€ Momoh said.
Earlier, the prosecution counsel, Mr Kyari Ahmed, had moved an application for an indefinite adjournment in order for him to execute the arrest ofÂ the accused person.
Counsel to the accused person, Mr Femi Falana, in his submission, said that his client was unable to come to the tribunal because of the embargo against the renewal ofÂ his passport at the Nigeria embassy.
He added that the embassy had assured his client that the embargo had been lifted and that the passport would be ready in a week.
Falana urged the tribunal to lift the bench warrant and give him more time to produce the accused at the next adjourned date.
â€œThe accused did not deliberately ignore the order made by this honourable tribunal. We humbly appeal to your lordship to lift the arrest order and give us the last chance to produce him.