Three state governments have initiated proceedings aimed at the jailing of the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, Godwin Emefiele, for contempt.
The Attorney-General of the Federation, representing the federal government, was sued as the sole defendant in the original suit, although, two more states, which are in support of the controversial policy, have since joined him as co-defendants.
Heeding the Supreme Court’s advice, the lawyer to the three states, Abdulhakeem Mustapha, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, filed contempt proceedings at the Supreme Court against Mr Malami.
Consequences of non-compliance with the orders
In the new court filing, Mr Mustapha warned the Attorney-General and the CBN governor of their flagrant disobedience to the Supreme Court ruling suspending implementation of the naira redesign policy.
The plaintiffs filed two sets of Form 48, each directed at Messrs Malami and Emefiele.
Already, the Chief Registrar of the Supreme Court has issued the contempt papers, which showed they were issued on 17 February.
The punishment for such disobedience of court order if proven is imprisonment.
According to the filings, Form 48, dated February 15, reads: “Take notice that unless you obey the direction contained in the attached Order of the Supreme Court of Nigeria delivered on the 3rd day of February 2023, you will be guilty of contempt of Court and will be liable to be committed to prison.”
The dispatch of Form 48 on an alleged contemnor is the first stage in the commencement of contempt proceedings.
It is a notice of consequence of disobedience of a court order, which could be followed with the issuance of Form 49, should the violation of the order continues.
At the apex court’s last proceedings, Mr Mustapha complained about the continued disregard of the orders by the federal government.
He described it as “executive lawlessness.”
The proceedings in the naira redesign suit resume at the Supreme Court on Wednesday.
It is expected that the filing will feature during the hearing scheduled to resume at the Supreme Court on Wednesday.
Premium Times – Nigeria