Durbar’s Demolition : Abacha Family Tells Court To Dismiss El-Rufai’s Request

The Court of Appeal in Kaduna has been asked to reject the request by the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, and three others for extension of time to appeal in a dispute with the family of a late former Head of State, General Sani Abacha (retd.), over the demolition of Durbar Hotel in Kaduna.

The Abacha family, acting through its head, Alhaji Mohammed Abacha, had sued El-Rufai and others in the name of Durbar Hotels, accusing them among others, of trespassing on the property, engaging in unlawful demolition and planning to sell it, having purportedly revoked the certificate of occupancy.

In a ruling on October 25, 2021, Justice Hanatu Balogun of the High Court of Kaduna State dismissed the notice of objection filed by the defendants on the grounds that it was without merit.

Justice Balogun upheld arguments by plaintiff’s lawyer, Reuben Atabo (SAN) that the suit was competent, well instituted and raised cause of action against El-Rufai and others for which they were required to enter a defence.

But El-Rufai and others are seeking leave to appeal through their application dated February 4, 2022 filed by their lawyer, Sule Umoru.

In the application, sighted by journalists in Abuja on Sunday, the applicants are praying the appellate court for an order extending the time within which they may seek leave to appeal against the decision.

But, in a counter affidavit, Atabo prayed the court to reject the application on the grounds that it was frivolous.

Atabo argued that, not only did the applicants fail to provide cogent reasons to support their request for seeking extension of time to appeal, but that they are allegedly in disobedience of a subsisting order of court, directing them to enter their defence to the substantive suit.

Lawyers to parties made their final submissions and adopted their written addresses on March 9 following which the court reserved ruling to a date to be communicated to parties.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *