Orji Uzor Kalu
Justice Muhammed Idris of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos, on Tuesday dismissed a no-case submission filed by a former governor of Abia State, Orji Kalu, in his bid to stop his trial over an alleged N3.2bn fraud.
Kalu, who is now a member of the ruling All Progressives Congress, alongside his former Commissioner for Finance and Account, Jones Udeogu, and a company, Slok Nigeria Limited, are being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on an amended 39-count charge bordering on money laundering to the tune of N3.2bn.
The EFCC, through its counsel, Rotimi Jacobs, SAN, had, on May 11, 2018, closed its case against the defendants, after the conclusion of evidence given by a prosecution witness, Chidi Chukwuka , Deputy Director, Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation, NDIC.
During the proceedings, the prosecution counsel also moved an oral application to amend the charge against the defendants in view of the evidence given so far.
However, the defence led by Awa Kalu, SAN, had, on May 28, 2018, filed a no-case submission on behalf of their clients, which they subsequently adopted as their written address.
In his short ruling on the no case-submission today, Justice Idris held that the prosecution had established a prima facie case against the defendants based on the evidence against the defendants.
The Judge also held that there was a link between Kalu and the two others.
“You have explanations to make,” the Judge said.
Following the ruling, one of the defence counsel, Goddy Uche, SAN, informed the court that the lead counsel to the defendants, Awa Kalu, SAN, had written to notify the court that Kalu has an appointment to undergo a surgery abroad.
He, therefore, prayed the court to adjourn the matter to September 10, 2018 to enable the first defendant, Kalu, to open his defence.
In his response, the prosecution counsel, Jacobs urged the court to adjourn further proceedings to the first week of September, saying that “The President of the Court of Appeal has directed that the matter must be concluded before the end of September 2018.”
Consequently, Justice Idris adjourned the case to September 10, 2018 for the defendants to open their defence.
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Illegal Abortions Responsible For Mysterious Deaths In Bauchi: State Govt
Bauchi State Government has revealed that the mysterious deaths recorded in the State has been as a result of illegal abortions.
An investigation carried out by the Bauchi State Primary Healthcare Development Agency has revealed that illegal abortion by unqualified medical practitioners is the cause of mysterious deaths in Azare and other local government areas in the northern part of the state.
According to reports, no fewer than 200 women have died in Bauchi as a result of this and there are projections that the number could be more at the end of the investigation.
The Executive Chairman of the agency, Dr Rilwanu Mohammed, disclosed this Friday, May 29, at an interactive session organized by the Bauchi State Public Health Media Network.
Mohammed said the deaths resulted from unwanted and unplanned pregnancies by both married and unmarried women of childbearing ages who, after becoming pregnant, visited quack health workers to terminate the pregnancies.
He said the lack of understanding of the importance of child spacing as well as ignorance of what to do with such pregnancies had become a major problem to family health in the state.
He emphasized the need for adequate sex education for the girl-child by parents, particularly mothers, to reduce unwanted pregnancies, thereby reducing deaths from complications.
Ondo Govt Arraigns Suspected Killers Of Funke Olakunrin
The Ondo State Government has arraigned four men suspected to have killed Mrs Funke Olakunrin, the daughter of the National Leader of Afenifere, Pa Reuben Fasoranti.
Recall that it was earlier reported that the Nigeria Police Force handed over the suspects to the State Government.
They are Lawal Mazaje from the Felele area of Kogi State, Adamu Adamu from Jada area of Adamawa State, Mohammed Usman from Illela area of Sokoto State, and Auwal Abubakar from Shinkafi area of Zamfara State.
The suspects were arraigned on Friday by the government at a Chief Magistrate Court sitting in Akure.
Lagos Govt To Shutdown Markets Violating Social Distancing Order
The Lagos State Government has threatened to shut down markets in the State violating the social distancing order.
The Corps Marshal, Lagos State Environmental Sanitation Corps (LAGESC), Gbemisola Akinpelu, gave the warning on Monday at the Command Headquarters in the Oshodi area of the state.
In a statement issued by the Head, Public Affairs Unit of LAGESC, Adebayo Kehinde noted that the order is coming from the State Ministry of Environment.
He reiterated the commitment of the agency to monitor markets across the state to ensure that the directive of the government is being adhered to strictly.
He urged the traders to maintain environmental cleanliness around the markets and stop trading on road setbacks and drainage.
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