These are not the best of time for the former governor of Imo State and now Senator in the 9th Assembly, Rochas Okorocha as a Federal high court sitting in Abuja has struck out the former Governor’s request for an order to stop the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the state probe panel from investigating him on alleged financial infractions.
Imo State suffered under the eight years of Okorocha as he was alleged to have stupendously enriched himself and his immediate and extended family members to the detriment of the state. Under him, civil servants were paid short of their salaries and pensioners groaned under him just as roads and infrastructure decayed beyond understanding.
Despite all those alleged infractions, Okorocha had the temerity to request for a court order ending or suspending EFCC’s investigation against him, including all the petitions submitted to it by the Imo government until the panel on contract set up by the same state government had concluded its probe on his government between 2011 and 2019.
While counsel to the former Imo State governor, Oba Maduabuchi (SAN) informed the court that the defence counsel asked for an adjournment to respond to processes served on them and also asked the court to stop those involved in the suit from going ahead with the probe pending the determination of the matter, the counsel to 2nd to 48th defendants, J.M. Madu quickly interjected that the probe panel had not commenced sitting. Madu also promised to inform the Attorney-General of Imo about the development.
The request was however rejected by Justice Ahmed Mohammed who held that it would be of no use to grant a restraining order since Madu had undertaken to tell the parties not to go ahead with the probe pending when the matter would be determined. He added that since the EFCC was not represented in court, it would be unfair to grant the request in the interest of justice.