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Supreme court dismisses FG’s appeal against Orubebe’s acquittal

Efforts by the Federal Government to upturn the acquittal of former Niger-Delta Minister, Godsday Orubebe, by the Appeal court has suffered a major setback after the Supreme Court dismissed it’s suit seeking to affirm that he breach Code of Conduct as a public officers.

The government appeal before the apex court was that the judgement made in Orubebe’s favour be upturned considering it’s convincing that the former minister allegedly hide some properties that belongs to him.

In a judgment delivered yesterday, a five-member panel of the apex court held that the appeal by the Federal Government was incompetent.

In the lead judgment prepared by Justice Mohammed Lawal Garba, but read by Justice Emmanuel Agim, the court held that the appellant failed to obtain the prior leave of the court before filing the appeal, which was based on grounds of mixed law and facts.

The court held that since the prior leave of court was not obtained as required, the appeal was incompetent and proceeded to dismiss it.

The Federal Government’s appeal was against the judgment of the Court of Appeal, Abuja which had set aside Orubebe’s conviction on October 4, 2016, by the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) for breach of Code of Conduct for public officers.

The Federal Government had, in a single-count charge, accused of failing to declare a property at Plot 2057, Asokoro District, Abuja, in any of the asset declaration forms that he submitted to the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) while serving as a minister.

Orubebe denied the allegation, claiming to have sold the property before becoming a minister and therefore found no need to declare it.

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