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Ohanaeze Arewa youths celebrate court order on Emefiele’s wife

The Ohanaeze youth consultative movement and Arewa Youth Consultative Movement have hailed the ruling of a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos which nullified the…

The Ohanaeze youth consultative movement and Arewa Youth Consultative Movement have hailed the ruling of a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos which nullified the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) order declaring the wife of former Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, Margaret, and directing the anti-graft agency to pay her N3 million damages.

The groups led by Mallam Kabiru Yusuf and Obinna Egondu said this in a reaction to the Federal High Court, Lagos, judgement ordering EFCC to issue a public apology to Mrs Margaret Emefiele whom the commission declared a wanted person, action that the court have declared illegal.

According to them, the judgement was victory for justice and rule of law and demonstration that the court is still the hope of a common man despite the tendencies powerful individuals and institutions to interfere and manipulate the judiciary for their pecuniary motives.

In a statement issued in Abuja, the group said: “We welcome and hail the judgement of the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos which ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to issue a public apology to the wife of former Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, Margaret as a wanted person as it ruled that the declaration was illegal.

“Recall that Mrs Emefiele had dragged the Commission and its chairman before the court for declaring her a wanted person and publishing her photographs on its website without any valid court order.

“The former CBN Governor’s Wife had in the suit number FHC/L/CS/262/2024, prayed the court to among other things, hold that the decision by the EFCC to add her name to its wanted persons list without any valid charge and or court order, amounted to a violation of her fundamental human right.

“She also prayed the court to order the EFCC to remove her name and photograph from the wanted persons list on its website and to apologise to her for the alleged rights infringement in two national television stations and three newspapers.

“Consequently, Justice D.I Dipeolu, in his ruling directed the EFCC to tender a public apology to Emefiele’s wife on its official website, where her name and photograph were initially published as a wanted person, declaring that the anti-graft agency has no power to declare any person wanted ‘without complying with the provisions of Sections 41 and 42 of the ACJA 2015 and without any valid charge or court order’.

“Justice Dipeolu held that it was illegal for the EFCC to have published the name and photograph of Mrs Emefiele on its website as a wanted person without complying with the provisions of Sections 41 and 42 of the ACJA, 2015 and without any valid charge and or a court order to that effect and also ordered the anti-graft to pay the applicant N3million as damages for infringement of the right.

“This is indeed a sound judgement and fair ruling aimed at protecting the fundamental human rights of
Emefiele’s wife and maintaining the rule of law which is among other duties of judiciary as the last hope of a common man.

“We reiterate in agreement with the court verdict that it was illegal for the EFCC to publish the name and photograph of Mrs Emefiele on its website as a wanted person without compliance with the provisions of Sections 41 and 42 of the ACJA, 2015 and without any valid charge and or a court order to that effect which caused damage to her reputation.

“And the presiding judge, Justice D.I Dipeolu did the needful by ordering the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC to pay the applicant N3million as damages for infringement of the right, hence it will serve as a deterrent to other individuals and institutions who may nurture any intention of embarking on such injurious adventure against anybody.”

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