By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
ABUJA – The Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, on Monday, ordered the Nigerian Police Force to immediately unseal the head office of the Peace Corps of Nigeria, PCN, in Abuja.
The court gave the order following a motion that was filed before it by the National Commandant of Peace Corps, Ambassador Dickson Akoh and the Incorporated Trustees of the organisation, who are facing trial over alleged N1.4billion recruitment scam.
Justice John Tsoho directed that police and other security agencies currently laying siege at the head office of the corps should immediately vacate the premises and hand over possession of the office to the applicants.
The applicants had in their motion dated October 6, 2017, prayed the court for an order unsealing their office which was forcefully barricaded by the police since last year.
However, in a counter move, Police, through its lawyer, Mr. James Idachaba, filed its own motion pursuant to section 330 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015 and Section 14 of the Advanced Fee Fraud and other rates Offences Act, asking the court to order the sealing of the PCN headquarters.
Police maintained that the PCN head office and properties inside it were proceeds of crime still under investigation, saying it took over assets of the organisation at No. 57. A. Abubakar Crescent, off Alex Ekwueme Way, Opp Jabi lake, Abuja, to avert the break down of law and order.
It therefore urged the court to dismiss PCN’s application and issue interim forfeiture order against the property.