Court to hear Onnoghen’s appeal against trial Jan 24

Justice Walter Onnoghen

The Court of Appeal in Abuja has fixed January 24 to hear a notice of appeal seeking to restrain the trial of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen, at the Code of Conduct Tribunal.

Mr Onnoghen’s counsel, Adegboyega Awomolo, had filed the appeal challenging the January 14 decision of the tribunal which adjourned until January 22 to commence proceedings on the trial of the CJN.

Ruling on Monday, Justice Abdul Aboki held that the appellate court had no definitive order to make in the present circumstance and therefore went ahead to fix January 24 to hear the merit of the appeal.

The Federal High Court Abuja, the FCT High Court and the National Industrial Court had, at various times, restrained the tribunal from commencing Onnoghen’s trial pending the determination of suits on the subject matter before them.

Counsel to the Federal Government, Emmanuel Omonuwa, had raised objection on the court’s earlier readiness to hear the appeal, adding that he was served with the processes on Friday.

He, therefore, prayed the court to adjourn the matter to enable him file his responses.

Mr Omonuwa also said that there was no need for the court to make any fresh restraining order, as three courts in Abuja had already issued restraining orders on the CCT, adding that those orders still subsisted.

Onnoghen, in the appeal, is also challenging CCT’s admission of Federal Government’s motion asking him to step down as the CJN pending the determination of the petition.

The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that the Code of Conduct Bureau instituted an action against the applicant on allegations bordering on non-assets declaration.