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$9 Million: Andrew Yakubu Storms Court To Demand For “Personal Cash Gift” Seized By The EFCC

Former Group Managing Director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr Andrew Yakubu, has filed a lawsuit at a Federal High Court in Kano to overturn an order of forfeiture issued with respect to $9.8 million recovered from his Kaduna home.

The court had on February 13 made the order of forfeiture in the interim to allow for Yakubu and other affected parties to give reasons why the sum should not be permanently forfeited to the government.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) recovered the money alongside £74,000,000 from Yakubu’s house in Sabon Tasha, Kaduna on February 10.

Yakubu has, however, now filed a motion on notice before the court praying for an order setting aside, discharging or vacating the ex-parte order.

In the motion, Yakubu said the court lacked the territorial jurisdiction to entertain the matter, being one related to a crime alleged to have been committed in Abuja, which is outside the court’s territorial jurisdiction.

According to him, by Section 45 of the Federal High Court Act, an offence shall be tried only by a court exercising jurisdiction in the area or place where the offence was committed. He also argued that no aspect of the alleged offence for which the order of forfeiture was made, occurred within the jurisdiction of the Kano judicial division.

A portion of the motion quoted by The Nation reads:

“The applicant/respondent (i.e. the Federal Government of Nigeria) lacks the competence (locus standi) to seek the interim reliefs whereof the order of this honourable court dated 13th February, 2017, was made.

“By Section 28 of the EFCC Act, only the commission has the vires (authority) to seek an order for the interim forfeiture of property under the Act. Although the EFCC was not the applicant, the order was granted in its favour in the body of the order.

“The power of this honourable court to make interim forfeiture order(s) pursuant to Sections 28 and 29 of the EFCC Act, 2004, is applicable only to alleged offences charged under the EFCC Act and not to offences cognisable under any other law.”

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