PUBLIC OFFICERS PROTECTION ACT –ESSENCE AND RATIONALE OF THE PUBLIC OFFICERS PROTECTION ACT
suit no: SC.68/2010
Legalpedia Electronic Citation: (2019) Legalpedia (SC) 42611
Summary Of Fact:
The Plaintiff/Appellant commenced this action at the Federal High Court, Kano Judicial Division by Originating Summons, against the Defendant/Respondents for authorizing the Swiss Authorities to freeze all the bank accounts held in that jurisdiction by late General Sani Abacha, his children, his servants and agents or any other third party who participated in the misappropriation of public funds.
The trial Court dismissed the Appellant's claims; he appealed to the Court of Appeal, Kaduna Division which appeal was also dismissed; hence his appeal to the Supreme Court.
The Appellant’s contention bothered on the provisions of section 2(2) of the Public Officers’ Protection Act, which according to him operates subject to certain exceptions, qualifications or limitations embedded therein.
That it protects a public officer in respect of any action, prosecution or proceedings and that the Respondent acted outside the colour of his office without a semblance of legal justification.
The Respondent’s contention on the other hand, was that the Appellant’s case before the lower courts was caught by the provisions of the Public Officers’ Protection Act, in that it was not filed within three months as contained in the Act,and that the Appellant's argument about the non -existence of the Banks (Freezing Account) Act was outside the scope of the Public Officers' Protection Act.