FEDERAL HIGH Court
in Abuja yesterday said that
it did not make any order
to freeze the accounts of
Benue and Plateau state
governments as reported in
some sections of the media.
Some newspapers
(Nigerian pilot Saturday
not included) had reported
on May 12 that Justice
Adeniyi Ademola of the
Abuja division of the court
ordered the freezing of the
accounts of the two states
in his ruling on separate
garnishee applications
filed against them by the
Judiciary Staff Union of
Nigeria.
Chief Registrar of the
court, Mrs. Rosemary
Oghoghorie, told journalists
in her office in Abuja that
the order of the court, which
was misrepresented in the
media, only restrained the
two state governments from
touching certain amount of
money in the state accounts.
“The Federal High Court
did not grant any order
to freeze the accounts of
the two states. All that the
Federal High Court did
was to grant ‘order which
means that certain amount
of money in the accounts
of Benue and Plateau state
governments should not be
touched,” Oghoghorie said.
She explained that
freezing an account was
different from “attaching”
certain amount of money in
the said account.
She said when certain
amount of money was
attached in an account it
implied that any withdrawal
that would leave the said
account with a balance less
than the amount attached
would be impossible.
She said, “To freeze an
account is that you cannot
withdraw from an account,
while to attach certain
amount in the account
means that the owner of
the account cannot touch
certain amount of money
in the account. To attach
does not mean you cannot
withdraw from the account.
“In the case of Benue,
the amount attached is
N957, 630,349.57 while
in the case of Plateau, the
amount attached was N673,
019,948.19.”
The order of attachment
was made for the bankers
of Plateau and Benue states
to appear in court on June
1 to show why they should
not be made to pay the
sums of money from the
accounts of the states to
satisfy the judgment it gave
on judiciary autonomy on
January 13, 2014.
Justice Ademola, who had
delivered the judgment in
favour of the Judiciary Staff
Union of Nigeria, granted
the fresh order in his ruling
on separate garnishee
applications the union filed
against the two states on
April 20, 2015.
The union stated in the
separate applications that
the amount due to Benue
State judiciary “as of March
2015, is N957, 630,349.57,”
and the amount due to the
Plateau State judiciary for
the same period is N673,
019,948.19


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