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EFCC vs Ex-Rep: Court reserves ruling on preliminary objection

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By Dapo Akinrefon

Justice Peter Affen of the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Abuja, yesterday reserved ruling on the preliminary objection filed by a former member of the House of Representatives, Nze Chidi Duru praying the court to declare that the charge pressed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, was an abuse of court process.

Beside, Duru was praying the court to declare the process filed by the anti graft commission was against subsisting judgements of court and also an affront to a valid order of court.

At the resumed hearing of the case, the lawyer representing Duru, informed the court on the preliminary objection filed against the prosecution, on the ground that the matter was an abuse of court processes.

Chidi Duru

Meanwhile, the prosecution served on the accused person’s a written counter affidavit to the earlier preliminary objection filed by Duru, while apologising orally for the services.

Duru through his counsel, Abdul Mohammed informed the court that he was ready to move his preliminary objection and sought the leave of the court to address it on point of law given that the prosecution counsel had just served him in the open court his reply to our preliminary objection. The presiding judge subsequently granted the prayer which led to the adoption of the preliminary objection and the relevant affidavit in support.

The preliminary objection was hinged on the grounds that the charge was an abuse of court process, which is against the subsisting judgements of court, which constitute an affront to a valid restraining order of court.

In his response, the counsel who represented the EFCC, Sylvanus Tahir opposed the preliminary objection and stated that the judgements of the court that was relied on by the accused were based on a civil suit and therefore have no bearing to the current charge. He further urged the court to disregard the judgements.

After hearing both arguments, the court reserved ruling till a later date which he said would be communicated to all parties involved.

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