My Pikin: Supreme Court orders appellate court to hear Appeal



*Orders fresh hearing of Appeal

The Supreme Court has faulted the December 2013 judgment of the Court of Appeal, Lagos Division, which upheld the conviction of the manufacturer of My Pikin baby teething mixture and two employees.

The Egbeda, Lagos-based manufacturer, Barewa Pharmaceutical Company, its Production Manager, Adeyemo Abiodun, and Quality Assurance Manager, Egbele Eromosele, were in 2008 charged with production of the dangerous syrup, which purportedly resulted in some deaths.

Justice Okechukwu Okeke of the Federal High Court, Lagos on May 17, 2012 convicted the three and sentenced to seven years each for conspiracy to sell the dangerous drug in a charge initiated by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC).

He handed them another seven years for actually selling the syrup, but ordered that the sentences should run concurrently.

The Judge, who retired a day after the judgment, ordered the company to be compulsorily wound up and its assets forfeited.

The Court of Appeal, Lagos Division, in 2013 upheld the lower judgment, but set aside the aspect relating to the winding up of the firm.

But the apex court, in its unanimous decision in three appeals filed by the firm and two of its employees, faulted the appellate court on the ground that it determined the convicts’ appeals on an abandoned notice and grounds of appeal.

Justice Bode Rhodes-Vivour, who wrote the lead judgments in the three appeals, ordered that the appeals be remitted to the Court of Appeal, Lagos for it to hear the appeals on the “valid notice/grounds of appeal” filed on July 3, 2013.

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