Justice Gabriel Kolawole of the Federal High Court, Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, has granted an Order of Interim Injunction restraining the country’s Senate and its Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions from issuing any Warrant of Arrest against Ibrahim Lamorde, former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
The court said its decision was pending the hearing and determination of Lamorde’s Motion on Notice for Interlocutory Injunction.
Lamorde had gone to court to challenge the warrant of arrest imposed on him by the Senate when a proper summons to appear before the Senate had not been issued to him.
“The Court had to intervene at this stage by granting an Injunction against the Senate,” said Lamorde’s lawyer, Festus Keyamo.
The Senate had last month directed its Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions to issue a warrant of arrest on Lamorde for refusing to honour several invitations of the committee to answer charges of embezzlement as chairman of the agency made against him by Dr. George Uboh.
The pronouncement of the Senate came after Senator Samuel Anyanwu, the chairman of the committee presented a report at plenary on 25 February, 2016, to complain about Lamorde’s refusal to honour the invitations.
The Senate was reportedly angry that Lamorde sought for more time to appear before the committee, but that he used the lull to sneak out of the country.
He had said: “our investigation shows that Mr. Ibrahim Lamorde transferred money, which the EFCC recovered in foreign and local currency from Recovery Accounts to Operations Account from where he diverted the said money.
“The EFCC, under Lamorde, traded with recovered funds and colluded with real estate companies to undervalue seized assets before they were sold to their cronies.”