A Bauchi Chief Magistrates’ Court, presided over by Magistrate Amin Illela, at the weekend remanded the state commandant of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps ( NSCDC), Jibrin Shuaibu and a staff member of the corps, Garba Musa, in prison custody for disobeying a court order.
The directive followed the expiration of Order 49 issued by the court and served on the commandant and his staff on May 9, 2014, ordering them to either produce an Opel Vectra car belonging to one Mrs Beatrice Gondyi or be committed to prison.
The plaintiff, Mrs Gondyi dragged the defendants to court requesting that the court should order them to provide the car marked DAS 157 AA before the court.
According to her, the car was impounded by NSCDC in December, 2013 for alleged criminal conspiracy by its driver, and Mrs Gondyi, who owns the car, has made several fruitless efforts through legal means to retrieve the car from the NSCDC since then.
She filed a motion through her counsel, Ebele UzoChukwu, on January 25, 2014 before a Bauchi Shari’ah Court, asking the court to order the officials of the NSCDC to release the car to her.
The Shari’ah court, however, granted her wish but the command refused to comply with the court’s order.
In a reaction, the plaintiff on April 2, 2014, went ahead to file another motion exparte before the Bauchi Chief magistrates’ Court 8, asking the court to order NSCDC to produce the said car in its custody, noting that the constant refusal of the command to provide the car was a deliberate disregard to court orders and accused them of acting above the law.
Meanwhile, on April 8, 2014, counsel to the NSCDC, Y. Y. Jauro, who was then representing the corps, told the court that they cannot give what they don’t have, adding that Gondyi’s car in the Shari’ah Court’s custody, while as of that time the car was parked at the premises of NSCDC.
Responding, magistrate Illela, on May 7, 2014 issued and served the defendants with Order 48, directing them to adhere to the earlier order which requested the accused to provide the car before the court.
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