Dasukigate: Court quashes Metuh’s fundamental human right suits

A Federal High Court in Abuja has struck out a case of abuse of fundamental rights instituted by the spokesperson of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Olisa Metuh, against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
Metuh who is facing a seven-count charge of corruption and money laundering, for illegally receiving and spending N400 million, being part of $2.1 billion arms money diverted by former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki had approached the court, seeking his release from detention.
Metuh has been in detention since January, 2016.
His lawyer, Onyeachi Ikpeazu, had pushed that the court declares a magistrate court’s order of Metuh’s arrest unconstitutional.

In a counter argument, the counsel to the EFCC, Sylvanus Tahir, said Metuh’s detention order was made by a competent court of law, hence cannot be termed unconstitutional.
Ruling on the matter, the trial Judge, Abang Okon, declared that the EFCC or other agents of the government can detain Mr. Metuh, following a court order, stating that , “It is my view that the applicant cannot complain of being held illegally, if he was held by an order of court”.
“This court in determining his fundamental rights cannot overthrow the decision of the Magistrate Court.”
He further ruled that it will be right for the applicant to challenge the order of the magistrate court by going before the same court to ask it to set aside its order, or asking a High Court to do so.
He said it will be outside of the law to rule that the Magistrate Court lacked jurisdiction to issue such an order.
“This court in its jurisdiction lacks power to declare the order that remands him for 10 days as unconstitutional since the remand order subsist,” the judge said.
“It is my view that the detainee cannot complain of unlawful detention by any department of the government where the detention was made with an order of court,” Mr. Abang ruled.
Asking Metuh to pay N15, 000 to the EFCC as damages, he said Metuh, being held for an upward of 10 days was lawful.