Published 08 January, 2020
The Supreme Court on Friday struck out an appeal filed by the family of the late Head of State, Gen. Sani Abacha, seeking an order to access some bank accounts operated by the late dictator and other members of the family in the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Jersey, Liechtenstein, and Luxembourg.
Justice Amina Augie, who read the lead judgment prepared by Justice C.C. Nweze, affirmed the concurrent decisions of the lower courts. Other members of the Supreme Court’s five-man panel that heard the appeal were Justices Olukayode Ariwoola, Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, Augie and Paul Galumje.
They all agreed with the lead judgment written by Justice Nweze. Augie said: “According to the admitted evidence, I have no limitations in affirming the concurrent decisions of the lower courts and the appeal is hereby dismissed.”
She held that it was too late for the Abacha family to query the decision taken by the Federal Government of Nigeria in 1999.
The appeal was against the ruling of Justice A.M. Liman of the Federal High Court, Kaduna, delivered on October 21, 2005, overruling a notice of preliminary objection of the Appellants. The Swiss government had on February 16, 2005, pledged to hand over the sum of $458 million out of the $508 million from the Abacha assets to the Nigerian government. (NAN)