Mambilla: Court to hear Agunloye’s N1bn ‘rights violation’ suit against EFCC June 24

Friday Ajagunna
Friday Ajagunna
Olu Agunloye

A federal high court in Abuja has adjourned a suit filed by Olu Agunloye, a former minister of power and steel, against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) until June 24 for a hearing.

Emeka Nwite, the presiding judge, fixed the date after Jedidiah Akpata, lawyer for Agunloye, sought an adjournment to enable parties in the suit to regularise their processes.

Akpata, who held the brief of Adeola Adedipe, lead counsel to the applicant, told the court that they were yet to respond to the defendants’ counter-affidavits.

Mercy Akeredolu, counsel representing the attorney-general of the federation (AGF), said the death of a lawyer who was supposed to handle the case, caused the delay in filing their processes.

M.K. Hussein, who appeared for the EFCC, did not oppose the application for adjournment.

The suit, marked FHC/ABJ/CS/167/2024 has the AGF as the second defendant.

Agunloye submitted that the EFCC declared him wanted without any form of judicial intervention, recourse to constitutional safeguards, or order of court.

The former minister is asking the court to order the EFCC to remove his name from the wanted list published on the commission’s official website or any other related platform.

He also wants the court to issue an order of perpetual injunction restraining the defendants from further declaring him wanted concerning the Mambilla hydropower contract except ”by  judicial intervention and recourse to all constitutional safeguards available to him in law and equity.”.

Agunloye is seeking N1 billion as “general damages.”.

The EFCC is prosecuting Agunloye over a $6 billion Mambilla hydropower contract.

He was arraigned on a seven-count charge bordering on fraudulent contract awards and official corruption.

The anti-graft agency said it has traced some suspicious payments made by Sunrise Power and Transmission Ltd. to Agunloye’s bank accounts.

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo also challenged Agunloye to tell Nigerians where he derived the authority to award a $6 billion contract to Sunrise for the Mambilla hydropower project in 2003.

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