A Federal High Court in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), has halted the arraignment and trial of Walter Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), before the Code of Conduct Tribunal for alleged fraudulent asset declaration.
The Code of Conduct Bureau had filed a six-count charge bordering on fraudulent declaration of assets against the CJN at the CCT, after receiving a petition from Dennis Aghanya, Executive Secretary of the Anti-corruption Research Data-Based Initiative (ARDBI).
However, on Monday, Justice N. E. Maha ordered the parties to maintain status quo until January 17, ruling that the defendants should be served with all the papers filed and they should appear in court at the next hearing.
The judge ruled on two suits — one filed by incorporated trustees of the Centre for Justice and Peace Initiative, and the other by the incorporated trustees of the International Association of Students Economists and Management.
Onnoghen’s arraignment at the CCT commenced earlier on Monday in his absence, with Danladi Umar, Chairman of the tribunal, granting the wish of the defence consel led by Wole Olanipekun (SAN) for the defendant to be served personally.
He adjourned the matter till Tuesday January 22