After the Kogi State Government filed a case against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), and Sterling Bank Plc, a political activist and blogger, Okai Austin has declared intent to be joined in the suit.
Austin disclosed in a post on his page that he has informed his lawyer to be joined in the suit.
He said he would join the suit to compel the EFCC and Sterling Bank to publish the documents authorizing the opening of fixed deposit account in the name of the state.
“Yahaya Bello said the money doesn’t belong to the state, the federal government said the money is meant for civil servants, as a concerned citizen, I have instructed a lawyer to join me in that legal Tussle. CBN has the BVN and Account number of the civil servants, the money can be paid to them directly using different measures
“I am also joining the suit, compelling EFCC to compel sterling Bank to make it publish the documents authorizing the opening of fixed deposit account in the name of Kogi state.
“I am a concerned citizens and I am standing for the innocent civil servants of my own state,” he said.
The suit filed by the state government before Justice J. Majebi of the State High Court, had the Commissioner for Finance, Asiru Idris and the Accountant General, Momoh Jibrin were claimants, while the EFCC, Sterling Bank, and CBN were listed as defendants.
The government demanded ”the sum of N35 billion only as damages against the 1st defendant for the defamatory publication, titled, ‘Hidden N19.3 billion Kogi salary bailout funds returned to CBN’ made on November 19, 2021 on her Facebook page containing amongst others, false and unfounded allegations of N19.3 billion being returned from Kogi State bailout account, which portrays fraud and misappropriation of public fund against the claimant.”
The government also asked the Court to declare that the publication by the EFCC containing, amongst others, false and unfounded allegations of N19.3 billion being returned was defamatory of the character of the Kogi State government.
The Kogi government asked for “an order of this Court compelling the 1st Defendant to, within 48 hours of the order of this Court, publish in three national dailies, a retraction of her frivolous allegations and also tender unreserved apology to the Claimant for the defamatory publication written against the Claimant.”