Court Holds Yahaya Bello Accountable, Reaffirms Arrest Order

by Ohepo Ohepo

The Federal High Court in Abuja has rebuked Yahaya Bello, the former Governor of Kogi State, accusing him of trying to evade the ongoing criminal prosecution initiated against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). Justice Emeka Nwite, in his ruling on Friday, emphasized the court’s previous order from April 17, which mandated security agencies to arrest Bello and present him before the court to respond to a 19-count charge.

The court criticized Bello for his disregard towards the judicial process, noting his continued absence from court proceedings and attempts to challenge the court’s jurisdiction through legal representations while remaining in hiding. Justice Nwite remarked that Bello’s actions demonstrate a clear intent to avoid trial, indicating “no atom of respect and regard for the court.”

Justice Nwite expressed, “The law is settled that he who disobeys an order of court and shows disrespect to the court cannot expect a favourable discretion of the court. The honourable thing the defendant would have done was to obey the order of court by making himself available.”

He continued, highlighting the constitutional mandate under Section 287 which requires all persons and authorities to comply with court orders. The judge stressed that Bello’s refusal to appear in court is an attempt to hinder the judicial process and prevent the court from exercising its jurisdiction over his trial.

Justice Nwite strongly condemned Bello’s disregard for court orders, stating, “He is not entitled to be heard or granted a favourable discretion. The refusal of the defendant to make himself available is solely to truncate the arraignment and prevent the court from proceeding further in this case.”

Bello faces serious allegations involving money laundering, breach of trust, and misappropriation of public funds amounting to about N80.2 billion during his eight-year tenure as Governor of Kogi State. The court insists that no further applications from Bello will be considered until he presents himself before the court to take his plea, underscoring that he cannot continue to challenge the court’s proceedings from afar without showing due respect and compliance with judicial directives.

You may also like

Are you sure want to unlock this post?
Unlock left : 0
Are you sure want to cancel subscription?
Update Required Flash plugin
Verified by MonsterInsights