Lawyer withdraws suit seeking Metuh’s release from EFCC’s custody - THE NEW DAWN ONLINE

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Thursday, January 14, 2016

Lawyer withdraws suit seeking Metuh’s release from EFCC’s custody


Olisa Metuh, National Publicity Secretary of the People’s Democratic Party.

Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, Lagos-based lawyer, has announced the withdrawal of a suit he instituted against the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) seeking the release of the national publicity secretary of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Olisa Metuh, from the custody of the Commission.

Adegboruwa, on Monday, filed the suit before the Federal High Court, Lagos, alleging that Metuh’s fundamental rights have been violated.

Metuh was arrested by the operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)‎ on January 5, 2016, in his house in Abuja and he has been kept in custody ever since, without access to his family, lawyers or doctors.

In the suit filed against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Attorney-General of the Federation, Adegboruwa contended that under Section 35 of the 1999 Constitution, the EFCC had exceeded the maximum time allowed by law for detention of a citizen, without trial in any court.

The plaintiff argued that the EFCC act constituted a flagrant violation of the applicant’s fundamental rights guaranteed under sections 33, 34, 35, 38, 40, 41, 42, 43 and 44 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 and Articles 4, 5, 6, 12, and 14 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, and is ultra vires, null and void and unconstitutional.

Adegboruwa said he filed a notice of discontinuance of the said suit n January 13, 2016 after reviewing the situation in the light of recent revelations.

“It would seem now that Chief Metuh is finding a common ground with the EFCC, in the light of the revelations coming forth, in relation to his case and the promise to arraign him in court.”

The lawyer denied being prodded by the opposition PDP to file the suit initially. He argued he has never met Metuh nor was he in contact with the PDP.

“The truth is that I have never met Chief Metuh before and I did not receive a dime from him, or from anyone else, to file the suit. I did so based upon my conviction, that it was wrong to arrest a citizen of Nigeria, lock him up in custody and be boasting that he will not be released or charged to court.

“My intervention on behalf of Chief Metuh, is not to shield him from his trial, if found wanting, but rather that as the voice of the opposition in Nigeria, he should not be cowed or silenced, without following due process.

“Through Chief Metuh, Nigerians have had the benefit of hearing the other side of the sweet stories of change, that the Buhari regime has been feeding us with.”

He also posited that he would only support the much vaunted anti-corruption war of the present regime if it was executed according to the dictates of the law.

“I support the anti-corruption war of this administration, when it is done in accordance with the rule of law.

“My intervention in securing reprieve for victims of human rights abuses, is not novel to Chief Metuh’s case,” Adegboruwa said.

The Guardian

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