Yahaha Bello: Court Refuses To Vacate Arrest Warrant, Says Kogi Ex-Governor Has Shown No Regard For Law

Justice Emeka Nwite of the Federal High Court in Abuja has refused to set aside the order of warrant of arrest issued on April 17, against Kogi State’s former governor, Yahaya Bello.

Justice Nwite gave the order on Friday while ruling on an application by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) that the court should not hear any preliminary objection by the former governor until he appears in court to take a plea on 19 counts of fraud filed against him.

Bello had also filed an application through his lawyer, Abdulwahab Mohammed, asking that the warrant of arrest issued against him by the court should be set aside.

But in his ruling, Justice Nwite agreed with the EFCC lawyer, Kemi Pinheiro, that no application from Bello should be taken until he appears in court to take a plea.

The application of the complainant (EFCC) is meritorious and granted as prayed,” Justice Nwite held.

The court held that a party in disobedience of a valid court order should not be given the opportunity to be heard by a court until the party obeys the order.

The judge stated that it would have been more “honourable” for former Governor Bello to obey the court by appearing for his arraignment on April 17, 18 or 23, stressing that an order of court subsists and is binding until set aside by a superior court on appeal.

Justice Nwite said the “deliberate refusal” of Bello to appear in court is targeted “to avoid arraignment and an attempt to frustrate” this court from doing its adjudicatory work.

The defendant cannot sit in the comfort of his home and dictate what he wants the court to do.

“The defendant clearly has shown no atom of regard and respect for the court, and is taking this court for granted by disobeying and frustrating judicial proceedings,” the court held.

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