A Federal High Court, Abuja, on Monday, ordered the court’s deputy chief registrar to notify the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, of the pendency of Abdulrasheed Maina’s suit.
Justice Inyang Ekwo gave the order shortly after Maina’s counsel, Ibrahim Idriss, SAN, informed that he had carried out the earlier court directive to effect service of processes on the respondents within three days of the order.
The judge, who ordered that hearing notices be issued on the respondents, adjourned the matter until Oct. 28 for hearing of the substantive matter.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Maina is the former Chairman, defunct Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT), who is currently serving an eight-year jail term at Kuje Prison for pension fraud to the tune of N2 billion.
He had, on Oct. 17, in a motion ex-parte marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/1729/2022 dated and filed on Sept. 27, told the court that he is suffering from a life-threatening disease in the prison and he needs urgent medical attention.
NAN reports that Maina (the applicant) listed the Minister of Interior and Controller General (C-G) of Nigerian Correctional Services Centre as 1st and 2nd respondents respectively.
In the application, the ex-pension reformed boss, prayed court for an interim order directing the minister and the C-G, via their staff or agents, to immediately take him to a reputable and recognised hospital for treatment of his life-threatening diseases pending the hearing and determination of his originating motion.
He also prayed for an order granting him leave to effect the service of the order, the originating motion and other subsequent processes on the respondents by substituted means.
Giving 10 grounds why the motion should be granted, Maina said the failure to treat the diseases/sicknesses he is suffering had led to his incapacitation and deterioration of his health.
According to him, there is already a likelihood of contravention or infringement of the applicant’s rights to life, dignity of human person and freedom from cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, among others.
He said it was in the interest of justice to grant his application.
When the matter was called on Monday, Maina’s lawyer, Idriss, was in court but no counsel appeared for the Interior Minister or Correctional Centre’s C-G.
The senior lawyer then informed that in accordance with the court order made on Oct. 17, the respondents were served with all the applications, including the originating motion.
He said despite effecting the service of processes, the respondents were not represented in court, and “the issue involved has to do with life threatening situation.”
Justice Ekwo held that though he was going to adjourned the suit for the substantive matter to be heard in the next adjourned date, “I am also going to have the AGF notify even though they are not necessary party.”
The judge, who adjourned the case until Oct. 28 for hearing the substantive matter, directed that hearing notices be issued on the respondents.
“The deputy chief registrar of this court is hereby order to notify the AGF of the pendency of this suit.
“This is is the order of the court,” he ruled.
NAN reports that Justice Okon Abang of a FHC had, on Nov. 8, 2021, convicted and sentenced Maina to eight years’ imprisonment for misappropriating N2 billion pension fund while serving as chairman of PRTT.