N150b Loan Suit: Federal High Court To Rule On June 17

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By Onoriode Etatsemi 

The Federal High Court sitting at Asaba has adjourned ruling on the preliminary Objections in the suit no. FHC /ASB/CS/66/2022 filed by Prince Efe Henry Duku, challenging the 150 billion loan facility obtained by the Delta State of Government. 

This followed arguments on the Preliminary Objections raised by both the Attorney-General of Delta State Isaiah Bozimo on behalf of the Delta State Government and by Ekeme Ohwovoriole SAN on behalf of the Delta State House of Assembly who are sued as Defendants in the suit. 

When the case came up for hearing on 1st June 2022, the Honourable Attorney-General, who led Omamuzo Erebe Esq., Solicitor-General and Permanent Secretary, S.O. Monye, Director of Civil Litigations, J.A. Otite Deputy Director, and U .P. Okolotu, Senior State Counsel, submitted to the Court that the Plaintiff lacks the requisite locus standi to institute the action and that the case discloses no reasonable cause of action.

He stated that the Plaintiff’s case amounted basically to a fishing exercise and that the Plaintiff could not substantiate the allegations that the Delta State Government acted illegally in obtaining the Loan.

Similarly, counsel to the Delta State House of Assembly, Ekeme Ohwovoriole SAN, also challenged the locus standi of the Plaintiff to institute the action. Both counsel urged the Court to dismiss the suit filed by the Plaintiff.

Responding to the applications of the Delta State Attorney-General and the Delta State House of Assembly, counsel to the Plaintiff, Michael Ukusare Esq. submitted that the Plaintiff has the requisite locus standi to institute the action as the Fiscal Responsibility Act entitles him to bring the action.

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Ukusare admitted that the Defendants who filed the Preliminary Objections did not obtain the leave of the Court to bring the application contrary to the rules of Court. 

He urged the Court to dismiss the Preliminary Objections filed by the Delta State Government and the Delta State House of Assembly. 

The Presiding Learned trial Judge, Honourable Justice Folashade Olubanjo, adjourned the matter to Friday 17th June 2022 for ruling and or hearing of the Interlocutory Injunction filed by the plaintiff. 

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