An Abuja Federal High Court has stopped the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from declaring Abdulrasheed Maina, the chairman of Pension Reform Task Team.
He had been declared wanted after reports emerged in 2017 that he was reinstated after his dismissal from the federal civil service in 2013 over corruption-related charges.
In a judgement delivered by Justice F.O.G. Ogunbanjo, the court held that it was unlawful for the commission to declare Maina wanted.
In a suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/957/2918 instituted by Maina on September 5, 2018, he sought a determination of the legality of being declared wanted by EFCC.
He also sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining EFCC from further harassing or declaring him wanted.
He further prayed the court to order the EFCC, both jointly or severally, its staff, agents, privies, representatives and any other person or related affiliates under whatever name or guise, to forthwith steer clear and remove his picture, name, references, addresses, details and other particulars from the wanted list published on the EFCC official website or any other related platform wherever it may be.
Ruling on the matter, Justice Ogunbanjo gave an order of perpetual injunction restraining EFCC and its affiliates or related bodies from further declaring him “wanted” in relation to subject matter of this suit.
The ruling read in part: “The plaintiff’s second prayer is a declaration that without recourse to any safeguard in sections 35, 37, 41 and 42 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), including a judicial intervention, order of court pursuant to sections 1(1), 8(1) and 42(2) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015, the 1st defendant cannot lawfully exercise its discretion, powers and or functions under sections 1(2)(C), 6, 7, 13 of the Economic and Financial Crimes Act, 2004, ditto section 4 of the Police Act, 2004 within the confines of the law.”