Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has appealed against the court order directing the police, Department of State Security, DSS, and the Nigerian Customs Service, NCS, to confiscate his, now, controversial autobiography, My Watch, launched Wednesday in Lagos. A federal judge, Valentine Ashi gave the order, on Thursday, in his ruling that the book launch was contemptuous of the court. Ashi said for flouting his order Obasanjo must in 27 days show the court reasons why he should not be punished and made to undo what he had done. The judge said it was immaterial Obasanjo’s excuse that the book had been published before the restraining order was granted. In his reaction to the order, Obasanjo, during the event, chided Ashi for granting the order, stressing that in a sane country he (Ashi) should be sanctioned.
In his appeal, Obasanjo’s counsel, Gboyega Oyewole, said the judge had wrongfully used his discretion in granting the order. He said “There was uncontradicted affidavit evidence that the defendant’s book, “My Watch” had been published and released to the public before the making of the interlocutory order.” Gboyega argued that “It is settled law that an injunction does not lie to restrain a completed act. His Lordship failed and/or neglected to allude to the affidavit evidence before making the interlocutory order.”
Obasanjo’s aide at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library, Abeokuta, Vitalise Ortese, Thursday debunked the insinuation that the ex-president was deliberately daring the court. He said in a statement that the widely used caption in the print media was misleading, describing his principal as law-abiding,
“who will only pursue his rights within the law and will not “‘dare” a judge or knowingly flout an order of a court of competent jurisdiction.”