Contempt: Appeal Court grants motion for stay of proceedings against Olukoyede


Bello and Olukoyede

By Taiye Agbaje and Edith Nwapi

The Court of Appeal in Abuja on Friday granted an ex-parte motion for a stay of contempt proceedings filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and issued against its Chairman, Ola Olukoyede, by ex-Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi.

The Court of Appeal presided over by Justice Joseph Oyewole, granted the EFCC’s application to serve the processes in the appeal by substituted means on the former Governor.

The court consequently adjourned the hearing of the motion on notice to May 20.

The EFCC boss, who was summoned to appear before the Kogi State High Court on May to show cause why he should not be committed to prison for disobeying its orders, had appealed the ruling of the trial court and sought a stay of the proceedings of the court.

The EFCC chair is facing a contempt charge for carrying out “some acts upon which they (the EFCC) have been restrained” by the Court on Feb. 9, pending the hearing and determination of the substantive originating motion.

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It would be recalled that Justice I. A. Jamil, in a ruling on Suit No: HCL/68M/2024 and Motion No: HCL/190M/2024, ordered that “the said act was carried out by the respondent (EFCC) in violation of the order, which was valid and subsisting when they carried out the act.

The judge held that the EFCC’s act amounted to contempt.

EFCC operatives had laid siege on the residence of the former governor as early as 8 a.m. on April 17, with a bid to arrest him despite a court order restraining them from taking such action, pending the determination of the originating motion.

Justice Jamil’s order was based on a motion ex-parte filed by Bello, through his lawyer, M.S. Yusuf, where he prayed the court for an order to issue and serve the respondent (EFCC chairman), with Form 49 Notice to show cause why order of committal should not be made on him.


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