N19.3bn bailout saga: Kogi drags EFCC to court, demands N35bn damages

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The Kogi Government has finally dragged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to court over unsubstantiated allegations that it fixed N19.3 billion bailout funds received from the Federal Government.

This is just as Justice J. J. Majebi of a Kogi State High Court, also granted an interim injunction restraining the EFCC from issuing further official or unofficial publications over the issue involving Sterling Bank Account No. 0073572696 or any other account, purportedly belonging to the Kogi government.

The Accountant-General of the state, Mr Momoh Jibrin; and Commissioner for Finance, Budget and Economic Planning, Asiwaju Mukadam Asiru, were claimants in the suit, while the EFCC, Sterling Bank and Central Bank of Nigeria were listed as defendants.

The Kogi government is demanding “the sum of N35 billion only as damages against the 1st defendant for the defamatory publication, entitled: ‘Hidden N19.3 billion, Kogi salary bailout funds returned to CBN’ made on Nov.19, 2021 on her Facebook page, containing amongst others, false and unfounded allegations of N19.3 billion being returned from Kogi bailout account, which portrayed fraud and misappropriation of the public fund against the claimant.”

The High Court granted the following:
“An interim injunction restraining the 1st Defendant/Respondents, its allies, agents, representatives, associates or whoever is acting for them or through them from doing anything either by way of publication or print or electronic media or issuing any official or unofficial publication in any print or electronic media, including online publication on its website or social media, both locally and internationally, with respect to the issues involving Account No. 0073572696 or any other account, purportedly belonging to the 1st Claimant/Applicant domiciled with Sterling Bank Plc or any other bank registered and operating in Nigeria, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction.

“An interim injunction restraining the 1st Defendant/Respondent, its allies, agents, representatives, associates or whoever is acting for them or through them from doing anything either by inviting officials of the 1st Claimant or requesting for any document with respect to the issue involving Account No 0073572696 or any other account purportedly belonging to the 1st Claimant/Applicant domiciled with Sterling Bank Plc or any other bank registered and operating in Nigeria or otherwise relating to or pertaining to the affairs of the first claimant whatsoever, or its employees, appointees or associates pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for Interlocutory Injunction.”

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