Judge accuses defense counsel of frustrating Metuh’s N400m trial.
Justice Okon Abang of Federal High Court sitting in Maitama, Abuja, yesterday expressed displeasure over tactics of defense counsel of former National Publicity Secretary of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Olisa Metuh, in a N400m alleged fraud case.
Metuh had been accused of receiving N400m from the Office of former National Security Adviser (ONSA), Sambo Dasuki.
Justice Abang observed that the various adjournments at the instance of the first defendant were an attempt to prolong, frustrate and scuttle the matter entirely, especially since the defense team handed over the matter to A.C Oziakor.
The judge added that the major reason for employing Oziakor’s services was to frustrate the trial.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has been prosecuting Metuh before Justice Abang for allegedly receiving N400m from ONSA in 2014, to run advocacy campaign for former President Goodluck Jonathan ahead of the 2015 general elections.
Metuh’s trial was stalled Wednesday, April 10, 2019, due to the absence of counsel to the first defendant, A.O Onsiowu.
At the resumed sitting yesterday, the prosecution counsel, S. Tahir told the court that the matter the prosecution was ready for the continuation of trial, adding that the 15th defense witness, who is also the first defendant in the matter, was in the dock for cross-examination.
While Counsel to the second defendant, Tochukwu Onwugbufor (SAN) also informed the court of their readiness to proceed.
But Oziakor, who was absent, sent a letter to the court, which was served all parties involved, seeking another adjournment as he had another matter at the High Court Adamawa, Yola State.
He attached a copy of his flight ticket to Yola to the letter. It will be recalled that the case had witnessed four different adjournments, which have always been granted.
However, the prosecution counsel opposed the application adding that the trial has suffered enough adjournments.
While the matter was adjourned to May 21, 2019, for the continuation of trial, Justice Abang, however, added that frivolous application for adjournment shall no longer be entertained.