Music Promoter, Alagbada, Wants Malami, Others Jailed For Alleged Contempt
Story By Gbenga Ogunbufunmi
A Nigerian music promoter, Alhaji Lateef Alagbada, has asked a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos to commit to prison, the Attorney General of the Federation(AGF) and Justice Minister, Mr. Abubakar Malami (SAN) and five others, for disobeying a court order.
Others joined alongside Malami as alleged contemnors in the suit marked FHC/L/CS/2212/2019 are: Deputy Commissioner of Police, Interpol Section, Alagbon, Lagos; Mr. Fadare, Mr. Emmanuel and Mr. Stephen, who are all Interpol officers.
Alagbada’s contempt suit against Malami and others alleged contemnors, filed by his lawyer, Dr. Babatunde Oni, is pursuant to Order 35 Rule 2 OF the Federal High Court (civil procedure) Rules, 2019 and under the inherent jurisdiction of the court.
Apart from seeking an order committing the AGF and others alleged contemnors to prison, for continuing disobedience to an order made on June 29, 2020, by Justice Muslim Sule Hassan, for his release after being granted bail, Alagbada also want Malami (SAN) and others to be committed to prison for failure to release him since the order for his release was made.
Alagbada also wants the alleged contemnors to be committed to prison, for their disobedience to a Court Warrant to bring him up before the Court on July 15, 2020, as ordered by Justice Hassan.
Alagbada in a 15 paragraph-affidavit in support of the motion deposed to by a lawyer, Timothy Olaniran of Babatunde Oni and Co., averred that by the court judgment of April 22, 2020 delivered by Honourable Justice M.S Hassan, who ordered his extradition to the United States of America (USA) and being dissatisfied with the judgment, he filed a notice of appeal against the said judgment.
The lawyer also stated that in furtherance, to the notice of appeal filed, the applicant, Alagbada, also filed an application for bail pending Appeal, which was granted on June 29, 2020, by Justice Muslim Sule Hassan and same was perfected, but all efforts to get the Applicant released proved abortive.
The deponent also averred that Justice M. S. Hassan thereafter signed an Order for Release dated July 13, 2020 and issued a Warrant to bring up the applicant before the Court on July 15, 2020. And that the Deputy Commissioner in charge of Interpol Alagbon, Lagos and his agents, the third to fifth respondents upon being served with the Enrolment Order of the Ruling, Order for Release, and Warrant to Bring up declined and failed to release the Applicant.
He also stated that the Interpol section has refused to obey the Court orders at the instance of the Attorney-General of Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN) and that the refusal and the court orders amounts to Contempt of Court,adding that the court has inherent jurisdiction and is by the provisions of the Rules of the Court empowered to grant an order of committal committing the respondents to prison.
The deponent added that it will be in the interest of justice to grant this application and that the respondents will not be prejudiced at the grant of this application.
Attached with the application are a copy of court order dated June 29, 2020, Marked as Exhibit A; another copy of court order for Release and Warrant to bring up marked as Exhibit B1 and B2 and letters written to both AGF, Mr. Abubakar Malami (SAN) and the Deputy Commissioner of Police in-Charge of Interpol Section, Alagbon, Lagos titled, “Re: Extradition of Lateef Alade Alagbada; Refusal to release him inspite of grant of bail pending appeal, by the officers of Interpol section, Alagbon, Lagos”.
AGF and other alleged contemnors are yet to file any counter affidavit to the application and no date has been fixed for its hearing.