On Wednesday, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) requested the Federal High Court in Abuja to reject a lawsuit Festus Keyamo, the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, had brought in order to have the former vice president Atiku Abubakar charged with corruption.
A similar request was also made in this regard by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).
Following a corruption allegation made by one of Abubakar’s ex-aides, Michael Achimugu, Keyamo filed a lawsuit on January 20 asking for an order compelling the EFCC, ICPC, and the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) to investigate and prosecute Abubakar.
In a petition, Achimugu claimed that the former vice president and former president Olusegun Obasanjo planned to defraud the nation by using “Special Purpose Vehicles” during their time in office.
At the resumed hearing on Wednesday, lawyers to the EFCC and ICPC, Samuel Okeleke and Mrs. O B. Odogwu, in two separate preliminary objections faulted the competence of the suit and urged the court to dismiss it.
Okeleke argued that Keyamo did not comply with the requirement of the law in filing the suit.
Odogwu on her part said the minister did not approach the ICPC properly, adding that the commission works discreetly.
She said: “We do a discrete investigation. He (Keyamo) gave us 72 hours ultimatum within which to investigate and prosecute the 1st defendant.
“That is not how we operate. We take our time to do a discreet investigation.”
Keyamo’s lawyer, O. C. Uju, urged the court to dismiss the objections raised by the defendants and continue with the case.
Justice James Omotosho adjourned the matter till June 5 for ruling on the preliminary objections.