By SIMEON EBEGBULEM
BENIN CITY—Chief Justice of the Federation, Justice Dahiru Musdapher, has queried Justice Adamu Hobon of the Federal High Court, Benin, Edo State, over the committal to prison custody of the state Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Dr. Osagie Obayuwana.
It will be recalled that Obayuwana was committed to prison by Justice Hobon on January 30, 2012, over alleged failure by the state government to comply with an injunction it gave in a suit between the state government and a private investor, Churchgate Limited managers of the state Bendel Brewery.
Obayuwana spent four days in prison following the order. Coalition of Political Parties in the state, labour and civil society groups in the state, consequently petitioned the CJN, calling for the sack of Justice Hobon.
In the query addressed to Justice Hobon, dated February 12, 2012, by the CJN, with Ref.No.NJC/F.3/FHC.10/1/12, signed by the Chief Justice of the Federation, Justice Hobon was requested to give his response in the matter within a month.
The petition accused the judge of “deliberately violating the fundamental rights of Dr Obayuwana by maliciously committing him to prison for reason that the Edo State Government allegedly refused to obey an order of court made in 2003. “The action was an abuse of judicial powers and obvious disregard for due process and the rule of law in maliciously committing the person of Obayuwana, the Attorney-General.”