December 26, 2022
A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has warned President Muhammadu Buhari; Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami; Senate President, Ahmad Lawan; and Lauretta Onochie, the Chairperson of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), on the consequences of flouting an earlier restraining order.
Recall that the court had granted an order stopping the National Assembly from screening and confirming the nomination of Ms. Onochie and Chief Samuel Ogbuku as the Chairman and Managing Director (MD) of the NDDC respectively.
The presiding judge, Justice J. K. Omotosho, instructed that all actions of the suit filed by Ama Etuwewe (SAN) & Co be suspended pending its determination.
“Take notice that unless you obey the directions contained in this order, you will be guilty of contempt of court and will be liable to be committed to prison,” the notice read.
Furthermore, the court stopped President Buhari from swearing in Ms Onochie and Ogbuku.
Recall that despite Etuwewe’s suit demanding that the provisions of the NDDC Act should be duly followed, the duo were last week screened and confirmed by the National Assembly as the Chairman and MD of the NDDC respextovely,.
The suit maintained that it is the turn of the Itsekiri ethnic nationality to produce the NDDC board chairman and MD as arguably the biggest oil-producing community in Delta State.
The presiding judge, Justice Omotosho upon reading the affidavit and hearing the counsel to the plaintiff, adjourned the matter to January 11, 2023, for further hearing.
Despite the court order, the Senate on Tuesday confirmed Onochie and Ogbuku as NDDC chairman and MD respectively.