The Department of State Service (DSS) failed yesterday to produce the Chairman of Capital Oil and Gas Industries Ltd,, Dr Patrick Ifeanyi Ubah, who has been in their custody.
The failure of the DSS to produce Chief Ubah was a fragrant disobedience of the order of court which mandated the DSS to produce Ubah in Court on Friday, May 12 - and to show cause why he should not be released unconditionally.
Justice Mohammed Idris had on the 9th of May given the order following a Motion Exparte filed on the 27th of March , 2017 together with an affidavit in support of the motion
At the resumed hearing, Mr. Ubah’s lawyer Ajibola Oluyede told the court that “your Lordship made an order on the 9th of May that the respondents especially the 4th and 5th respondents should produce the applicant today and to show cause why he should not be released unconditionally.”
“The applicant has not been produced, rather we were served this morning with a notice of preliminary objection and a counter affidavit to the application itself being filed yesterday.”
“It will appear from the document that after the original processes were served on the 28thof April, the only reaction to that was to arrest the applicant from his house on the 5th of May.”
“But after we had approached the court for an order for his production with your Lordship’s order on the 9th of May, the 4th and 5threspondents went before the FCT High Court not for the purpose of preferring charges against the applicant, but merely to frustrate your Lordship’s order for his production.” said Oluyede.
According to Mr. Oluyede, they did this “by obtaining on the 10th of May an order from the FCT High Court to detain him for 14 days in order to complete their purported investigation. And I submit that the 4th and 5threspondent have acted in a manner that’s in subversion of the dignity of the Court.”
Mr. Oluyede further stated that “the proceedings taken to the FCT is an abuse of process and also an abuse of power.”
Mr. Ubah’s Lawyer referred the Court to the affidavit, which was obtained by PREMIUM TIMES, where he stated that “as soon as the order to produce the 1st applicant, was served on the 4th and 5th respondents, he was placed under additional strictures and began to receive threats that unless he withdrew his action he would rot in the detention and members of his family including his children and wife would be arrested and detained.”
According to the document, “he was told that the court’s order would not be obeyed and it was in his best interest to withdraw the action.”
“After being in custody for over a month, he was coerced to sign some documents. First to sign a document for discontinuance upon threat to family and himself, he was then coerced into signing documents of indebtedness to NNPC and pledging some of his assets to the Asset Management Company of Nigeria, AMCON.
In his reaction, counsel to the DSS, Peter Okerinmode, told the Court that “the alleged arrest and detention of the 1st applicant occurred in Abuja on the 5th of May and that no infringement of the 1st applicant’s right occurred in Lagos State.”