Justice Inyang Ekwo of a federal high court sitting in Abuja on Tuesday threatened to throw out the fundamental rights suit instituted by Abba Kyari, suspended Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) against the National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).
Justice Ekwo made the threat following the delay by Mr Kyari’s lawyer, Cynthia Ikena, to serve Joseph Sunday, counsel to the NDLEA, with her further and better affidavit after being served with the counter affidavit since February 28, 2022.
At the resumed hearing, Mr Sunday who heads the directorate of Prosecution and Legal Services of the agency told the court that Ms Ikena only served on him the further and better affidavit this morning.
“The matter was adjourned for the hearing of fundamental enforcement rights of the applicant,” he said. “This morning, we were served with applicant’s further and better affidavit.
“We filed our counter-affidavit since Feb. 24 and served the applicant Feb. 28 but today, they are just serving us,” he added.
The lawyer argued that by virtue of Order 2 of Fundamental Enforcement Rights Civil Procedure Rules, 2019, the applicant was out of time to file the application.
Ms Ikena, who complained that she had tried to meet with her client in NDLEA’s detention about three tines but was denied access, prayed the court for more time to regularise the application.
Justice Ekwo, in a short ruling, threatened to strike out the suit if the lawyer was unprepared in the next adjourned date.
“Put your house in order before the next date of hearing and if you do not, I will assume you are frustrating this matter and the suit will be struck out,” he said.
The judge adjourned the matter until April 7 for a hearing.
Describing as fictitious the NDLEA’s cocaine trafficking allegations against him, the suspended cop in a suit marked FHC/ANJ/CS/182/22 demanded the enforcement of his fundamental human rights.
The former head of the Inspector-General (I-G) of Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT), in the originating motion dated Feb. 16 and filed Feb. 17 demanded a N500 million in damages from the NDLEA over alleged unlawful arrest and detention.
Mr Kyari also sought for an order, directing the NDLEA to tender a written apology to him in two national dailies.