The Chief Magistrate of Wuse Zone 6 Magisterial division in Abuja, Emmanuel Iyanna, has admitted that he was lied to which made him sign a search warrant for the residence of a Supreme Court judge, Mary Odili.
Iyanna said he was misled by the Federal Ministry of Justice under Attorney-General, Abubakar Malami, according to acourt order obtained by People's Gazette.
The Chief magistrate consequently revoked the search warrant he approved against Justice Odili’s residence due to misrepresentation in the first information application supplied by an ad-hoc public asset recovery panel domiciled under the justice ministry and overseen by Malami.
“Upon misrepresentation to this honourable court that led to the issuance of a search warrant in favour of Joint Panel Recovery, Ministry of Justice, against House 9, Imo Street, Maitama, Abuja, dated October 29, 2021; in view of the above fact, the said search warrant is hereby revoked,” he ruled.
Armed operatives had stormed Odili’s residence bearing a warrant that was issued based on a whistleblower’s information from Aliyu Umar, an Abuja resident.
Umar had deposed on October 13 that there were illegal activities going on at 9, Imo Street, Maitama that should warrant immediate action from the law enforcement.
The whistleblower also said in court filings that the tip-off was supplied to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
This prompted Iyanna to issue a warrant on October 29 for the property to be searched. Subsequently, operatives mobilised to Odili’s house based on the warrant seeking to forcibly search it in the evening of October 29, the same day a warrant was approved.
But the chief magistrate said in a fresh order. “In view of the above fact, the said search warrant is hereby revoked.”
SaharaReporters had on Friday reported that Mary is wife of Peter Odili, a former governor of Rivers State, who is currently on the EFCC watchlist.
The security operatives were said to consist of soldiers and officers of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) who identified themselves as members of a joint task force.
A statement from the EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren had read, “The attention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has been drawn to claims in a section of the media that operatives of the commission today, October 29, 2021 stormed the Maitama, Abuja home of a Judge of the Supreme Court, Justice Mary Odili, purportedly to execute a search.
“The commission by this statement wishes to inform the public that the report is false as it did not carry out any operation at the home of Justice Odili.
“If there was any such operation as claimed by the media, it was not carried out by the EFCC. The commission enjoins the public to discountenance the report.”