Nigeria: Court Hears Tiamin Rice Complaint Against Kano Govt, IGP Over N300 Million Judgement

A Federal High Court in Abuja will tomorrow hear Tiamin Rice’ application over the failure of the Kano State Government and the Inspector General of Police (IGP) to obey its (High Court) order directing the immediate reopening of Tiamin’s rice factory sealed by the Kano State Government.
Justice Okon Abang had on May 4, 2020, in a judgment, ordered the reopening and awarded N300m damages in favour of the applicants after a suit was filed by Tiamin Rice, Tiamin Multi Services Global and Alhaji Aliyu Ibrahim challenging the sealing of their rice factory at C14 AA Shehu House, Amana City, Zaria Road, Kano.
Although the state government claimed that the factory was too close to a COVID-19 isolation centre, the applicants told the court that many expatriate staff of their company were trapped inside the factory since it was forcefully sealed on April 18, 2020.
Justice Abang ruled that the closure of the factory without a valid court order violated the rights of the applicants and the exemption accorded food production companies by the Federal Government.
Following the judgment, the police filed a fresh motion on May 15, 2020, asking the court to either stay the execution of the judgment or set it aside as they could not participate in the hearing of Tiamin’s application due to COVID-19.
In a motion brought by their Counsel, Adegboyega Awomolo (SAN), on Thursday, the applicants informed the court that the police application was intended to frustrate the judgment of the court and amounted to an abuse of court process since they had already filed a notice of appeal challenging the judgment.
The applicants want the court to hold the IGP and the Kano Commissioner of Police (CP) for contempt for bringing the fresh motion, adding that they “are on the facts of this case, a direct challenge to the authority of the court, and it demonstrates impunity, showing that they have the right to ignore and dare the court.”
However, Counsel to the IGP and the Kano CP, Celestine Odo, requested for time to reply.
Before adjourning to May 27, 2020, the judge ordered service of the court process by email to the Kano State Government and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) which are also judgement debtors.

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