Court Bars EFCC From Inquiring Into RSG Finances

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A Port Harcourt High Court has barred the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from further inquiring into and investigating the finances of the Rivers State Government.
The Court said that the Commission cannot inquire into the finances of the Rivers State Government until it vacates the judgement of a Federal High Court delivered in 2007 and that of the High Court of Rivers State delivered in 2008.
The case was filed by the Accountant General of the State, Mr. Dagogo Abere over an infringement on his fundamental rights by the Commission.
The court presided over by Hon. Justice Ollor Osaronu said that the continuous disobedience to the subsisting two court judgements by the anti-graft agency amounted to not only a violation of court orders, but was untenable in a democratic society that is based on the principle of rule of law.
According to him, the 1999 Constitution as amended has vested in State Houses of Assembly the power to inquire and investigate into the Finances of their State Governments.
He said that until the two judgements were set aside on appeal, the commission remained barred from further investigating and inquiring into the finances of the Rivers State Government.
Justice Osaronu said that his court was duty bound to protect the fundamental rights of the applicants and ordered the commission to pay the sum of N20 million within 14 days to the applicant as damages.
Reacting to the judgement, Counsel to the Accountant General of the State Barrister Reginald Nwoka said that the import of the judgement was that, the Commission must stop disobeying court orders.