Court Rejects Metuh’s Application To Invite Dasuki As Witness
By Oladipupo Mojeed
The Federal High Court, Abuja has refused to grant Olisa Metuh’s application to compel Sambo Dasuki, a former National Security Adviser (NSA), to testify in his case.
The court also declined Metuh’s request for a eight-week break so he can travel to the United Kingdom (UK) for treatment within.
Metuh is standing trial for receiving N400 million from Dasuki. The money was part of funds set aside for the acquisition of weapons to be used in tackling the Boko Haram insurgency in the north-east.
Ruling on the case, Justice Okon Abang, said his application lacked merit and that Dasuki was not a “compellable witness”.
He said although Metuh’s application was not against the constitution, it had to be “deserving” for it to be granted.
Abang added that it was not the duty of the court to compel any witness to testify for a party.
”To grant or refuse the application is at the discretion of the court. The constitution did not oppose the application but it must be deserving. It is not the duty of the court to compel any person to come to give witness for a party.
”It must not be signed by the judge at all cost. It is my view that Col. Dasuki is not a compellable witness to attend court to give evidence for the first defendant. There’s nothing to show that first defendant applied to the authority keeping Dasuki.
”He cannot come to court first without asking the authority, it is not the duty of the court to compel anybody except he is a compellable witness.
”The application of the first defendant was not made in good faith. The defendant filed a list of witnesses to be tried in trial. The name of Dasuki was not there initially. It is an afterthought. The application is to delay progress in this matter,” he said.
On Metuh’s application to travel to the UK for a medical treatment, Abang held that the defendant should have gone to the appeal court because a previous order preventing Metuh from travelling on a similar issue was still subsisting.
”This is not a sentimental issue or sympathy but an issue of law. From the fact deposed to it, it seems to me that the applicant has not been healed of the ailment that he claimed.
”The applicant should not create problem for the court. The applicant said there was no need to appeal against the order but invited the court to sit in appeal in its own order.
”It is pertinently unlawful. I have no jurisdiction to sit on the matter – a court cannot sit on its order right or wrong. That request cannot be reopened in this court. It is accordingly dismissed.”