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Why Nigerian Federal Court Dismissed Busola Dakolo’s case against COZA Pastor, Biodun Fatoyinbo

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The High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Court 12, sitting at Bwari, Abuja has dismissed the case filed by Busola Dakolo against Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo of the Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA). Justice Oathman A.

Musa, in giving the judgment, held that the matter amounts to injustice and an abuse of judicial process adding that the case is empty and purely sentimental. Justice Musa said that the case was aimed more at cruelty than obtaining justice.

The court also awarded costs of N1,000,000 against Busola Dakolo and held that the fine should have been 10 times more because the court’s time was wasted. Dakolo filed the suit against Fatoyinbo after alleging that he raped her in 2002 and caused her emotional distress.

Fatoyinbo’s team of lawyers, led by Dr. Alex Izinyon (SAN), had however argued that the prayers in the suit were ungranted by the court, and that the suit was frivolous and an abuse of court process. Fatoyinbo wasn’t in court because he’s not required to appear in person for a civil matter. He was however represented by his lawyers. 

Meanwhile following Federal Capital Territory High Court’s judgement on Thursday, Busola Dakolo has reacted, saying that she would appeal the ruling of Justice Oathman A. Musa, The celebrity photographer and wife of Popular singer, Timi Dakolo had filed a case against Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo of Commonwealth of Zion Assembly over alleged rape.

Justice Oathman A. Musa, in giving the judgment on Thursday held that the matter amounts to injustice and an abuse of judicial process adding that the case is empty and purely sentimental. Justice Musa further said that the case was aimed more at cruelty than obtaining justice.

Busola’s lawyer, Pelumi Olajengbesi in reacting to the verdict, vowed to appeal the ruling.

He said, “We have received several calls after the ruling of the high court of the Federal Capital Territory sitting at Bwari this morning seeking our view on the decision of the court, hence, this statement.

“The court ruled that the matter is statute-barred because the events that crystallised to the cause of action took place 16 years ago and that the claimant Mrs. Busola Dakolo has only six years within which to seek redress in court in line with the statute of limitation.

“We are mindful of the decision as delivered by the court, presided over by the Hon. Justice A.O Musa. We are equally observant of the fact that the Court omitted to address the cause of action, the subject matter of the suit in determining whether it has jurisdiction to entertain the said matter”, the lawyer maintained in the statement issued to the media.

He continued, “While we acknowledge the time of the court, we know in accordance with the Nigerian judicial system that the Court’s decision is not final as it is glaringly contestable.

“For all intent and purposes, having seen several sponsored misleading news reports in the media, we are duty-bound to state that the court has not and did not exonerate Biodun Fatoyinbo”. Mrs Dakolo’s Lawyer wrote, “As it stands, the substance of the matter has not received any judicial attention”.

He insisted that, “Biodun Fatoyinbo through his lawyers have only argued that the court should not allow the matter to proceed to trial because it is an event that occurred long ago and hence out of time.

Mrs Dakolo has vowed to continue fighting, “We shall therefore in this circumstance approach a superior court to intervene for a better appreciation, and take a more expansive view of the suit considering that the subject matter is one that is novel in our clime.” the statement concluded.

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