Nigeria anti-drug agents to vacate senator's home

A Nigerian senator under house arrested and wanted in the US on drug related charges has had a court issued order for anti-drug agents to vacate his property.

Nigeria anti-drug agents to vacate senator's home

World Bulletin / News Desk

 A Nigerian court on Tuesday ordered anti-drug operatives out of the home of a senator wanted in the United States for alleged drug-related offences, days after the agents placed Buruji Kashamu on a house arrest ahead in a bid to extradite him.

Justice Ibrahim Buba of a Lagos High Court said the siege on Kashamu's home was subjudice because there is a pending suit where the presiding judge had ordered that status quo be maintained.

In that suit, Kashamu is asking the court to restrain the Nigeria Drug Laws Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) and other agencies or proxies of government from arresting, harassing or extraditing him.

"The order of Justice (Okon) Abang, whether rightly or wrongly, must be binding on parties and must be obeyed. The position clearly is that the person against whose an order is made is bound to obey it or go on appeal," Justice Buba ruled.

"The men or the NDLEA are hereby ordered to vacate the residence of the applicant (Kashamu) in line with the order of Justice Abang."

The ruling follows Kashamu's application to order to commit the NDLEA authorities to contempt of court following an attempt to arrest him despite a subsisting case.

The NDLEA, however, says it would not call off the siege on Kashamu's house, arguing that the court lacks the power to make such restraining order.

"NDLEA has described as diversionary and inconsequential reports of a court order directing its men to vacate the residence of Senator-elect, Buruji Kashamu, and requesting both the Attorney General of the Federation, Mr. Bello Adoke and Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of the NDLEA, Ahmadu Giade to appear in court," spokesman Mitchell Ofoyeju said in a statement.

“The NDLEA does not believe that any court will issue an order preventing a government agency from performing its statutory responsibilities in a lawful manner. The Agency has therefore refused to be distracted and will continue to maintain presence at the residence. It is advisable that Kashamu respects the law by submitting himself to the due process of the law."

The agency maintained it had received a request from the United States Government to extradite Kashamu for drug-related offences and claimed to have served a warrant of arrest on him.

Further hearing on the case is adjourned to June 4.

Kashamu is alleged to have been involved in an intercontinental drug trafficking ring some of whose members have been prosecuted and jailed regarding their activities.

The senator, however, denies being involved in the case, claiming that the issue was a "mistake of identity".

Güncelleme Tarihi: 27 Mayıs 2015, 07:55