Court Denies Akingbola Leave For Medical Treatment Abroad

Erastus-AkingbolaYNaijaAn Ikeja High Court on Thursday denied a former Managing Director of Intercontinental Bank Plc, Erastus Akingbola, the permission to travel abroad for medical treatment.

Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo, in a ruling on Akingbola’s application, held that the accused had not provided sufficient evidence that the ailment could not be treated in Nigeria.

It would be recalled that Akingbola is being prosecuted alongside Bayo Dada, the General Manager of Tropics Securities Ltd.

They are charged to court by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for allegedly stealing N47.1 billion belonging to Intercontinental Bank (now Access Bank Plc).

Akingbola had filed the application on March 19 and sought the court’s permission to keep a medical appointment at a Harley Street Hospital, London, United Kingdom, on April 15. The EFCC had, however, opposed the application and urged the court to dismiss it because Akingbola had failed to prove that his ailment could not be treated by a Nigerian hospital.

Dismissing the application, the judge agreed with the EFCC, adding that he could not exercise discretion in Akingbola’s favour because of the peculiar nature of his case.

Onigbanjo said: “The first defendant (Akingbola) failed to disclose any current serious medical condition that will make the court to grant this application.

“There is no evidence that he consulted any specialist hospital in Nigeria before making the application. He failed to attach a medical report from a Nigerian specialist hospital that the ailment can only be treated outside the country.”

The judge further stated that it was erroneous for Akingbola to assume that he had a legal right to seek medical attention anywhere he wanted.

However, Onigbanjo relaxed the bail term, which requires Akingbola and his co-defendant, to report every first working day of the week at the EFCC’s office.

He directed that the accused should henceforth report at the commission’s office only on the first and third Fridays of every month, and adjourned the matter to July 10 for trial.



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