Court Strikes Out Innoson’s Suit Against EFCC
A Federal High Court in Lagos yesterday struck out a fundamental rights enforcement suit filed by Innoson Nigeria Ltd and its chief executive officer/managing director, Innocent Chukwuma, against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and five other respondents.
The presiding judge, Justice Hadizat Rabiu-Shagari, struck out the suit after it was withdrawn by the applicants.
In the ex-parte application filed before the court, the businessman had dragged the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Nigeria Police Force, and Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) before the court, seeking the enforcement of his rights.
The suit had earlier come up for mention on Thursday but it was adjourned till yesterday because of the controversy generated by the appearance of one of the respondents.
During yesterday’s proceedings, the lawyer to GTB, Adebowale Kamoru, while citing several Supreme Court authorities, insisted that GTB must be heard in the ex-parte application.
The lawyer’s submission was strongly opposed by the lawyer to Innoson Nigeria Ltd and Mr. Innocent Chukwuma.
The presiding judge, Justice Hadizat Rabiu-Shagari, had to adjourn the suit till yesterday as both parties were unable to reach a concession on the matter.
At the resumed hearing of the application yesterday, Innoson’s lawyer, Professor MacCharty Mbaduagha, told the court of his clients’ intention to withdraw the suit due to the filing of a counter affidavit by the sixth respondent, GTB.
Innoson lawyer said: “Given the development as at yesterday, we filed a motion ex-parte on December 20, 2017; we did not serve the processes on any of the respondents.
“Yesterday, the sixth respondent was represented on ex-parte application. Counsel made submission and informed the courtyard that the sixth defendant had indeed filed a counter to the ex-parte application.
“We brought this to the notice of our client and he instructed us to withdraw it, and find out why due process was not followed in the circumstance.
“We duly and humbly apply to withdraw the suit”.
In response, GTB lawyer, Adebowale Kamoru, said they were not opposing the withdrawal of the suit.
He, however, stated that they would await the applicants’ investigation into how his clients got to know about the suit.
Ruling on the application, Justice Rabiu-Shagari granted Innoson’s request.
“In view of the application of the applicants’ counsel, the application is hereby struck out,” she ruled.