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Coroner Dismisses TB Joshua’s Application to Halt Building Collapse Inquest

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TB Joshua

A Lagos State Coroner’s Court on Wednesday dismissed an application filed by the registered trustees of the Synagogue Church of All Nations and its founder, Prophet Temitope Joshua.

The applicants had asked the court to stop proceedings on its ongoing inquest into the September 12th building collapse of a guest house within the church premises.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 116 persons were killed after the six-storey building collapsed.

The applicants had asked the court to stop proceedings on issues relating to calling of witnesses in respect of the building approval or material tests of the collapsed building.

They had also asked the coroner to suspend further action on the invitation issued to Joshua to appear before the inquest to give evidence.

According to them, the stay of proceedings is pending the determination of another suit filed by Joshua against the coroner before Justice Lateefat Okunnu of an Ikeja High Court.

However, in his ruling, the coroner, Oyetade Komolafe, dismissed the application for lacking merit and for being an abuse of court processes.

Komolafe said the court had no power to entertain the application because it was not an adversarial court which had plaintiffs and respondents.

He said: “The proceedings before the court is a judicial inquiry to ascertain certain facts’’.

“There are no parties in a coroner’s inquest or proceedings. The proceedings are inquisitorial and the court cannot determine or pronounce criminal liabilities on witnesses.”

According to him, the Coroner’s Systems Law prohibits the court from entertaining applications outside its own jurisdiction.

“Therefore, this court cannot adjudicate on this motion on notice as in doing so, the court will be acting outside its own jurisdiction,” he said.

Komolafe noted that the suit filed before the high court did not translate to an automatic stay of proceedings because the judge did not grant any order to that effect.

“From the order made by the high court, there is nowhere it was stated that the proceedings of this inquest should be stayed as provided by Section 40(6) of the High Court Civil Procedure Rules.

“This court cannot adjudicate on this motion on notice as doing so would amount to operate outside the scope of a Coroners Court.

“In the circumstances therefore, this application is hereby dismissed,” he added.

 The matter was adjourned until December 12th for further hearing.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) was established by the Federal Government of Nigeria in May 1976 to gather and distribute news on Nigeria and cover events of interest to Nigeria at the international level for the benefit of the Nigerian Media and the Public.

3 Comments

  1. TJ

    December 10, 2014 at 10:22 pm

    Why is he afraid of the courts when he has nothing to hide?

  2. amaa

    December 11, 2014 at 11:37 am

    Where is your so called God now you need a miracle to get away from this one magician TBJ. Many lives lost in this tragedy, and you are trying to stop a common coroners inquest. Wait until the actual trial. You will go to prison just like your fellow magician REV king.

  3. Authentic Sunshine

    December 11, 2014 at 11:45 am

    I am so happy….Y are you happy….I am so happy….Y are you happy …many many many are coming ….tralalaalala. #inquest#Adjudicator#Motion#Suitfiled#TranslateToAutomaticStayOfProceeding# This is just an epistle of plenty legal grammar – Dogo turanchi……. You pepo should call him out!!!!!! Let him come and explain why a whole 116 pepo died in his wake. Anu pam!!!!!!
    On the flip side, BN my xmas hols has started so more to come from me.

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