The Federal High Court, Ado-Ekiti, has ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Zenith Bank plc to “show cause why an order ex parte to unfreeze the governor’s accounts should not be granted.”
According to Lere Olayinka, Spokesman of Ayodele Fayose, Governor of Ekiti state, Mike Ozekhome (SAN), counsel to Fayose, had filed an ex parte order, deposed to last week by Bimpe Olatemiju, seeking a mandatory order de-freezing the account belonging and operated by the Governor pending the determination of his interlocutory application.
Joined in the suit are the EFCC (1st defendant) and Zenith bank (2nd defendant) with a 17-paragraph affidavit, a lone exhibit, which was a letter issued to Fayose by Zenith bank confirming that the EFCC actually placed a restriction order on the accounts, and a written address.
Olayinka added that the judge ordered the anti-graft agency and Zenith bank Plc to appear in court with the said evidence on Monday July 4.
“Citing the case of Abdulaziz Nyako Vs EFCC to buttress his position that the anti-graft agency has no power to freeze Fayose’s account without valid court order, Ozekhome added the action was a flagrant negation of the Section 308 of the constitution, which conferred absolute immunity on the government against civil and criminal procedure,” Olayinka’s statement read.
“He said it was appalling that the EFCC could play ostrich to these valid constitutional requirements and took cognizance of the African Charters on Human and People’s Rights before taking the punitive stand against Fayose, adding that these infractions had rendered the action unconstitutional, wrongful, null and void.
“Delivering his ruling, Justice Taiwo Taiwo, said that he quite understood that the applicant (Fayose) enjoys immunity and that the court can adjudicate on this matter as canvassed by the counsel to the plaintiff, but he pointed out that the relief he basically sought was a mandatory order of the court.
“I quite agree that the applicant has immunity pursuant to provisions of the constitution, but it is glaring that the application he is requesting for is a mandatory order to undo what had already been done and the court can’t abdicate its duty under this circumstance,” Olayinka quoted the Judge.
“I am of the opinion that this mandatory order is better granted with the interlocutory order being sought through an application pending before the court, because the applicant has filed all papers to this effect.
“I hereby order the 1st and 2nd respondents to appear before this honourable court on July 4, 2016 and show cause why the order should be refused.”