Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, has ordered the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) to submit the certified true copy of David Ukpo’s biodata to the attorney general of the federation
Recall that the judge had on Friday July 1 ordered NIMC, Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Stanbic IBTC and United Bank for Africa to supply information on Ukpo — an alleged kidney donor — to Sonia, daughter of the former deputy senate president, Mr. Ike Ekweremadu.
However, at the court session on Wednesday, counsel for Ekweremadu, Mr. Adegboyega Awomolo, and his wife, told the court that NIMC was yet to comply with the previous order.
Responding, counsel for NIMC, Mr. Muazu Mohammed, said the commission was reluctant to release Ukpo’s biodata because it wanted to protect its system.
“It is not that the first respondent (NIMC) is not ready to comply. We have been talking with applicants’ counsel since the day of judgment,” he said.
“The difficulty is that we want to protect the system. If we comply with this judgment, the system will suffer in the future my lord,” he said.
Mohammed said although NIMC had reached 90 per cent compliance with the previous order, the commission was concerned about releasing the biodata to the applicants because of the Act which set up the agency.
He said the law does not allow the commission to release an individual’s biodata to another individual.
The counsel emphasised that if this was done due to the applicants’ high positions, it may be exploited in the future.
The judge, however, said the order was not made because the applicants were highly-placed.
He said the judgment was made for the whole of the country, adding that it could have been an ordinary Nigerian making the application and that the court is there to protect everyone.
“If you need an order of court to carry out the judgment, it is a simple application,” Ekwo added.
Consequently, Mohammed prayed the court to direct the agency to supply the biodata information of Ukpo to the attorney general.
Awomolo did not oppose the application.
“We agree that the document be transmitted to the AGF for onward transmission to the UK,” he said.
The application was granted by the judge.
Recall that in June, the London Metropolitan Police arrested and charged Ekweremadu and his wife to court for allegedly bringing a child (Ukpo) to the UK for organ harvesting.
However, according to an earlier letter addressed to the British High Commission, Ekweremadu had said Ukpo was travelling to the UK for tests to determine if could donate a kidney to Sonia, the lawmaker’s daughter.
The UK authorities said the “child” had “been safeguarded”, while the police said their operatives “are working closely with partners on continued support”.
Although the police said Ukpo is 15, his passport and bank verification number (BVN) details show he is 21.
With TheCable report