Federal Capital Territory, FCT High Court in Apo, Abuja,
Justice Valentine Ashi yesterday expressed his dissatisfaction at what he believes to be a deliberate delay tactics on the part of counsel for Emmanuel Ehidiamhem Okoyomon, former Managing Director of Nigeria Security Printing and Minting Company, NSPMC, whose extradition to the United Kingdom has been ordered by a Federal High Court, Abuja.
Okoyomon’s extradition is being sought by the UK government over his alleged role in the bribery allegation involving officials of Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, the NSPMC and Securency International Pty of Australia between 2006 and 2008.
Justice Ashi had at the last sitting on August 5, 2015 fixed yesterday for hearing on the preliminary objection raised by the Attorney General of the Federation, AGF, to the bail application brought by Okoyomon’s counsel, Mike Enaharo.
Enaharo had approached the court to challenge Okoyomon’s continued incarceration at Kuje Prisons, accusing the Deputy Comptroller in-charge, Medium Security Prison, Kuje and the Attorney General of the Federation of denying Okoyomon of his right to personal liberty.
The Deputy Comptroller was absent in court, on August 5, 2015, despite being ordered by the court to appear that day. He had sent in a letter, stating that Okoyomon was being held at the prison by virtue of a remand order by the Court of Appeal.
The letter and the action of the prison officer, however, angered the judge, who subsequently ordered that he present himself in court today.
At the resumed hearing, Muslim Hassan, representing the AGF, apologized on behalf of the prison officer, who was also present in court.
“They acted based on the legal advice from their prison legal services, and they are remorseful for whatever the action may have caused,” Hassan said.
The judge, while adjourning the case till August 24, 2015 for definite hearing, urged the counsel to avoid engaging in delay tactics with regards to the case.