Court rejects NDLEA’s application, insists on adjudicating Kashamu’s case
A JUDGE of the Federal High Court, Lagos yesterday dismissed the application filed by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), praying him to hands off the case involving Senator Buruji Kashamu.
NDLEA had asked the judge to withdraw from the case on the ground that he might not reach a different conclusion in the fresh case having ruled in Kashamu’s favour once.
According to NDLEA, the case file should be returned to the Chief Judge, Justice Ibrahim Auta, for reassignment to another judge.
The embattled senator had sued the anti-narcotic agency, praying the court to restrain the Federal Government from seizing his property over drug trafficking allegations.
He sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining NDLEA and the Attorney General of the Federation from taking possession of his property.
Justice Ibrahim Buba had earlier restrained the NDLEA from arresting or extraditing Kashamu to the United States of America, where he is allegedly wanted before Kashamu filed to restrain the government from seizing his properties.
NDLEA asked the judge to disqualify himself from the trial. It said since Justice Buba, on June 23, reaffirmed a May 27 order by Justice Okon Abang of the same court stopping Kashamu’s arrest, he might not be fair in the case.
The agency claimed the injunction amounted to preventing federal agencies from discharging their constitutional duties.
Refusing the application yesterday, Justice Buba said he would not shy away from deciding a case merely because of an unsubstantiated accusation of bias. He dismissed the application for lacking in merit.
“This application is part of the game of hide and seek between the parties before me who have been in and out of court. Some of the matters are on appeal.
“The applicant failed woefully to point at any decision this court reached or point of law that it reached and is likely to reach in another one”, he ruled.
The judge said if any party is dissatisfied with any judgment, the right thing to do was to appeal, and not to accuse a judge of bias.
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