Thursday, June 16, 2016

Why Dasuki’s Re-arrest did not Violate the Law – Court Dismisses 2 Appeals

Punch reports that Dasuki through his lawyer, Mr Jospeh Daudu (SAN) had urged the court to order the immediate suspension of his trial until his release from the custody of the Department of State Security (DSS) which has been holding him since December 29, 2015.

The former NSA had previously applied to the high court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) presided over by Justice Hussein Baba Yusuf, and the federal high court, Abuja, presided over by Justice Ademola Adeniyi, seeking orders to stop EFCC from further prosecuting him alleging that his re-arrest was a violation of court orders granting him bail. Both courts dismissed the applications.

A five-man panel of the Court of Appeal, in a unanimous judgment, on Wednesday, affirmed the high court judges’ rulings to the effect that Dasuki’s re-arrest and continued detention did not flout the orders granting bail to him.

In the lead judgment, Justice Abdul Aboki, who led the panel, held that Dasuki’s appeal was incompetent and dismissed it. He ruled:

“Once the appellant was released from prison on December 29, 2015, the order of court admitting him to bail and releasing him from prison, where he was detained, has been complied with.

“The order was not complied with by the EFCC as it was not the subject and it was not directed at it.  For this reason, it is fallacious to argue that the EFCC did not comply or had disobeyed the court order for bail. The order was discharged by another agency of government – the Controller of Prisons.

“The power to punish for disobedience to court order is quasi-criminal, and by Section 36(9) of the 1999 Constitution, no person is guilty of any act or omission that was not an offence at the time it was committed. In the instant appeal, the trial judge in his ruling, giving right to this appeal, said he did not make any order against Dasuki’s re-arrest.”

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