Court Vacates Bench Warrant For Ehie’s Arrest

The Federal High Court, sitting in the federal capital territory, Abuja has set aside its earlier order for the arrest of Rt. Hon. Ehie Edison the chief of staff to Rivers State Governor.

The court had ordered for the arrest of Ehie and five others over their involvement in the burning of the Rivers State House of Assembly.

The Court had on January 31, 2024, issued a bench warrant for the arrest of Ehie, Jinjiri Bala, Happy Benedict, Progress Joseph, Adokiye Oyagiri, and Chibuike Peter also known as Rambo following an ex-parte application by the Inspector General of Police which was predicated on Sections 37, 113, 114, 84, and 184 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 and Section 35 of the 1999 Constitution as well as Section 32 of the Police Act 2020.

The IGP’s lawyer, Simon Lough, told the court that the six defendants needed to be arrested to defend charges against them, including alleged terrorism and attempted murder and murder of a Superintendent of Police, SP Bako Agbashim, and five police informants.

The police had in the seven charges preferred against them, accused the defendants of committing alleged terrorism offences by invading, vandalising, and burning down Rivers State House of Assembly in the wake of the political crisis that rocked Port Harcourt in October 2023.

However, Ehie and other defendants’ counsel, Femi Falana, (SAN) and Oluwole Aladedoye, filed separate applications asking the court to set aside the arrest warrant as well as restrain the police from carrying out the order pending the determination of the case.

Falana maintained that the IGP had not filed any criminal charge or motion before seeking the arrest of his client.

He said, “The complainant/respondent did not adduce evidence of terrorism in the affidavit supporting the application.

“The complainant/respondent did not cite any section of the Terrorism Prevention Act, 2013 (as amended) alleged to have been contravened by the applicants.”

Aladedoye, argued that a notice of appeal had been filed against the trial court orders, hence, the need for the police to be restrained.

However, in a judgement delivered today, Justice Emeka Nwite set aside it’s earlier order for the arrest of Ehie Edison, Chibuike O Peter and others.

The judge said he was “Misled by the police”.

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