Sunday Igboho Drags Attorney-General, Department Of State Services, Central Bank To Court Over Refusal To Pay N20.5billion Judgment Cost

The Yoruba Nation agitator and activist, Sunday Igboho, has filed a lawsuit against the Attorney-General of the Fed­eration (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), and the Department of State Services (DSS) over their failure to pay him N20.5 billion awarded him as cost in the suit against his house invasion.

The court had approved and granted the garnishee order against the Nigerian government. 

The two applications were filed by his lead counsel, Chief Yomi Alliyu (SAN), at an Oyo State High Court which or­dered the DSS to pay him N20 billion in aggravated damag­es and another N500 million in cost for invading his Soka, Ibadan house on July 1, 2021.

Ugamatv had reported that two persons were killed during the invasion, his properties de­stroyed while other valuable belongings were taken away.

Justice Ladiran Akintola on September 17, 2021, had ruled that the invasion was illegal and that Igboho did not breach the constitu­tion by campaigning for Yoruba nation but was being hounded for his agitation.

The judge awarded him N20.5 billion but instead of pay­ing the said cost, the DSS filed an application for stay of execu­tion and an appeal against the judgment.

While filing an objection to the stay of execution, Alliyu filed a second application for Garnishee Nisi against the CBN to pay N20.5 billion to the applicant out of Federal Government’s purse with the regulatory bank.

Alliyu argued that neither the appeal nor stay of execution application affects an applica­tion for garnishee.

At the sitting on Monday, the court agreed and granted the garnishee order.

The matter was, however, adjourned for CBN to come on January 12, 2022 to show why the court should not make the garnishee order absolute.

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In the DSS motion to stay the execution of the N20.5 bil­lion damages awarded Igboho, it argued in its affidavit that pay­ing the huge sum would plunge Nigeria into further economic woes, adding that it would make the judgment of appeal of little or no effect if paid now.

The DSS also argued that Ig­boho is currently a fugitive in Republic of Benin who would be unable to refund the huge sum should the judgment of the appeal court nullify the award.

But Alliyu faulted the claim, in his objection, saying that Ni­geria’s budgets are in trillion naira mark in recent years. He also pointed out that the Office of the National Security Adviser under which the DSS operates gets N136billion budget annually which makes it very possible to pay only N20.5billion.

The senior lawyer also argued that DSS claim that Igboho was a fugitive amounted to contempt of the court in view of the fact that the court had declared him free of any constitutional violation in the September 17 judgment.

Igboho is currently held in Cotonou, Benin Republic, on the order of the Nigerian gov­ernment for the purpose of extradition.

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