Court orders arrest of ex-NASS Clerk over corruption allegations

A High Court of the Federal Capital Territory sitting at Maitama has issued warrant for the arrest of the immediate past Clerk of the National Assembly, Mohammed Sani-Omolori.

Justice Suleiman Belgore made the order on the strength of an ex-parte application the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, brought before the court.

The Commission, in the motion, marked M/8728/2020, which was moved by its lawyer, S.N. Robert, alleged that the former NASS Clerk spurned invitations it extended to him to report to its office over an investigation into a petition against him.

The anti-graft agency said it was investigating a petition that accused the Respondent (Sani-Omolori) of complicity in the illegal diversion of 14 Toyota Hilux vehicles and 13 Peugeot 508 valued at over N400 million.

It said that as part of its investigation activities, it invited the Secretary of the National Assembly Commission, Adamu Fika, Mr Oluseye Ajakaye and others to its office for questioning.

The agency told the court that all those that were invited with respect to the alleged crime, made revelations that indicted the erstwhile NASS Clerk, following which letters were sent to him on November 4, 2019.

It alleged that Sani-Omolori ignored the initial letter as well as another one that was sent to him on March 16, 2020.

Consequently, the Commission, in an affidavit it attached to the application, said it was left with no option than to approach the court for a warrant of arrest to be issued against the Respondent.

Meanwhile, after he had listened to EFCC’s lawyer, Justice Belgore held that he found merit in the application.

“I have considered the application, I averted to Paragraph 7 of the supporting affidavit and Exhibit EFCC 4 wherein the respondent was said to have ignored invitations to report in the applicant’s office without any justifiable reason.

“It is clear to me that Section 3 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), 2015 can be invoked in the circumstances of this case in granting this application and I so do.

“Warrant of immediate arrest is hereby issued against Mohammed Omolori, the former Clerk of the National Assembly forthwith,” Mr Belgore held.

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