Ebonyi PDP chairman wants CP detained for disobedience of court order

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Ebonyi PDP chairman wants CP detained for disobedience of court order

A federal high court sitting in Abuja has been prayed to order the detention of the Commissioner of Police in Ebonyi State, Aliyu Garba for disobedience and disregard of its orders.

This follows an interlocutory injunction suit by Hon Fred Udeogu, the Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, in the state challenging the refusal of the police to grant him and other exco members access to the state secretariat of the party.

The Suit with suit No: FHC/ABJ/CS/1609/2020 was brought before Justice I.E.Ekwo ordering the Inspector-General of Police not to accord any recognition to Onyekachi Nwaebonyi-led PDP exco.

The enrolled order was served on the Inspector General of Police. The Inspector-General of Police upon the receipt of the order, immediately directed Aliyu Garba, the Commissioner of Police Ebonyi State, to comply with the order.

However, despite the subsisting order of the court directing the Garba not to recognize the deposed former Chairman of PDP in Ebonyi State and his followers, the CP, has continued to disregard, neglect, and flagrantly disobey the order of the court, by refusing the Applicants access to their office.

Udeogu in a fresh motion file by his counsel, Okoro Nkemakolam S.C Esq, prayed the court to commit Aliyu Garba, the Commissioner of Police Ebonyi State, to prison and detained in custody until he obeys the order of the Honourable Court made on the 21st of January 2021.

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He also prayed the court for such further or other orders as it may deem fit to make in the circumstances of the case.

The plaintiffs reminded the court that “in a well-considered ruling delivered on the 21st of January 2021, it directed the Inspector General of Police, its servants, agents and/or officers from in whatsoever manner accord recognition to the Barr Chief Onyekachi Nwebonyi, Engineer Francis Ori and Emeka Ogbo, as officers of the Peoples Democratic Party, pending the determination of the suit.

“Despite the service of the order of the court on the Inspector General of Police, and a written directive by the Inspector General of Police, to Aliyu Garba, the Commissioner of Police Ebonyi State, in utter disregard and disobedience to the order of this Honourable Court, has refused the Plaintiffs access to their party Secretariat as at February 4th”.

The applicants argued that: “The law in this instance is clear that it is settled that it is the unqualified obligation of every person against or in respect of whom an order is made by a court of competent jurisdiction to obey it unless and until that order is discharged and this the more so, where the person affected by the order believes it to be irregular or void. In so far as the order exists, it must be obeyed to the letter. See Military Governor of Lagos State v. Ojukwu & Anor. (1986) 1 NWLR (Pt. 18) 621 SC. An order of court, no matter the fundamental vice attaching thereto, remains legally binding and valid until set aside by due process of law.

“My Lord, by Order 35 of the Federal High Court Civil Procedure Rules 2019, this honourable court is empowered to grant this application as prayed. It is further our respectful submission that contempt committed ex facie curiae is never tried by the judge against whom orders were flouted. We humbly refer my Lord to the case of GODEIN v. EWOR (2018) LPELR-44625(CA), where the intermediate court held as follows: The law is trite that contempt of Court committed ex facie curiae cannot be tried by the Court whose order was contemptuously flouted. That will tantamount to breaching the cardinal principle of law Nemo Judex in Causa Sua, that is, no man shall be a judge in his own cause.

“We must humbly urge this Honourable Court to grant this application as prayed as the Applicants have established by credible evidence the existence of a valid order of this Honourable Court, the service of same on the Respondent. The Applicants have also established the refusal and neglect of the Respondent to obey a valid order of this honourable court. We most humbly urge this honourable court to grant this application as prayed”.