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Court to rule on N2.4bn, $5.78m linked to Patience Jonathan

NEWSMAN, Abuja – Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos, will on October 7, 2021, hear a motion filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) seeking the final forfeiture of N2.42billion and $5.78million linked to Former First Lady, Patience Jonathan.

Justice T. G. Ringim fixed the date on Monday after argument by counsels.

The EFCC had filed an ex-parte application before Justice Mojisola Olatoregun for the forfeiture of the funds in Skye Bank Plc and Ecobank Plc.

In April 2017, Justice Olatoregun ordered the temporary forfeiture of the money.

Jonathan and other respondents, LA Wari Furniture and Bathes, opposed and approached the Court of Appeal and later the Supreme Court to challenge the ruling.

But they lost as the courts affirmed the order of Justice Olatoregun.

The judge retired from the Bench in 2019 and the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court re-assigned the case to Justice Chuka Obiozor.

However, Justice Obiozor could not preside before his transfer to the Federal High Court in Benin, Edo.

At the resumed hearing, EFCC counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo narrated the matter to Justice Ringim and prayed for final forfeiture.

Ifedayo Adedipe (SAN) and Gboyega Oyewole (SAN) appeared for Patience Jonathan.

Counsel to the companies, Mike Ozekhome (SAN) urged the court to adjourn, adding that he was preparing to file an application challenging the constitutionality of the suit, Daily Post reported.

Justice Ringim held that the nature of the proceedings was special and cannot be truncated by any application.

“This court will adjourn for the hearing of the motion for final forfeiture that is pending.

“The second respondent is, hereby, ordered to file the application, if any, within 14 days from today, and the plaintiff will have one week to respond”, he said.

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