Impeachment Suit: Release My Case File For Judgement, Nyako Pleads With Auta
…Accuses FHC CJ Of Abusing His Authority
BEVERLY HILLS, February 18, (THEWILL) – Still challenging the legality of his impeachment, former Governor of Adamawa State, Admiral Murtala Nyako (rtd), Wednesday asked the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Ibrahim Auta, to release his case file for judgement, accusing Auta of abusing his position by withdrawing the case file from the Adamawa division of the court.
The Chief Judge was alleged to have withdrawn the case file few days to the delivery of judgement by the trial judge, Justice Bilikisu Aliyu.
At a media briefing in Abuja on Wednesday, Nyako through his counsel, Olukoya Ogunbele, pleaded with Justice Auta to immediately release the case file to Yola division of the Federal High Court so that the trial judge could deliver judgement in the interest of justice.
According to Ogunbele, withdrawing a case file few days to judgement date by any judicial officer was in bad taste and should not be condoned.
But dismissing the allegation, the Chief Registrar of the Federal High Court, Mrs. Rosemary Dugbo Oghoghorie, said the allegation was not true.
Though she admitted that the case file was withdrawn, she insisted it was to determine if allegation of bias against the trial judge was true.
According to Oghoghorie, a counsel in the suit, Festus Keyamo, representing the Chief Judge of Adamawa State, Justice Ishaya Banu, had petitioned Justice Bilikisu Aliyu on ground of denial of fair hearing and forwarded same to the CJ.
Oghoghorie explained that as a tradition, Justice Auta had to call for the case file to ascertain the genuineness of the allegation of denial of fair hearing and also forwarded a copy of the petition to the trial judge for her response.
Oghoghorie said up till date, the trial judge had yet to respond to the petition against her and that the CJ is still awaiting the response.
She also noted that the Court of Appeal, Yola division on Tuesday granted a stay of proceedings in the matter and for that reason, none of the parties could take any step as far as the matter was concerned.
She therefore advised parties in the matter to exercise restrain and stop throwing out allegations at highly placed judicial officers for no just cause.
Meanwhile, Nyako has dragged the Chief Judge of Adamawa state, Justice Ishaya Banu, before the National Judicial Council (NJC) for disciplinary action over alleged miscarriage of justice in a suit challenging the legality of his (Nyako) impeachment.
Nyako, in a petition to the NJC dated February 10, alleged that Justice Banu frustrated his legal action by delaying proceedings in the matter assigned to himself thereby subverting the cause of justice.
The petition signed by Director of Media to the former governor, Ahmad Sajoh, further alleged that throughout the period the case was with Justice Banu, no substantial progress was made as he allegedly used every ploy to delay the case, to the extent of deliberately refusing to return from Abuja to Yola when the case was slated for hearing.
Justice Banu was also accused of giving long adjournment and refusing to attend court on hearing date, thereby, creating unnecessary bottleneck in the hearing of the suit.
Nyako further alleged that in another case between him and the state House of Assembly and two others, Justice Banu through his counsel, Keyamo, curiously applied to be joined as interested party in the suit where he had no legal interest to protect.
The former governor therefore urged the NJC to investigate the matters with a view to establishing the veracity or otherwise of his petition.
Nyako also urged the NJC to apply appropriate sanctions against Justice Banu so as to protect innocent citizens from any further abuse of judicial authority.
He also wants NJC to order a speedy hearing of his case before Justice Banu in the interest of justice.