EFCC Vs Akinjide, Others: Ex-Senator Challenges Court’s Jurisdiction
A former Senator representing Oyo Central Senatorial District, Ayo Adeseun, has filed an application to challenge the powers of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to try him and two others before Justice Muslim Hassan of a Federal High Court in Lagos over allegations of laundering N650 million.
On the 16th of January, the EFCC had re-arraigned Sen. Adeseun alongside a former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Ms. Jumoke Akinjide, and a PDP politician, Chief (Mrs) Olanrewaju Otiti, before the court on 24 counts.
Following their arraignment, Justice Hassan fixed Monday (February 5) for the commencement of their trial.
However, at the resumed hearing of the matter on Monday, Sen. Adeseun’s lawyer, Micheal Lana, informed the court that he had filed two preliminary objections challenging the jurisdiction of the court to hear the case.
The first application faulted the procedure adopted by the EFCC in initiating criminal proceedings against the defendants while the second contends that charges as couched so not fall within the powers of the court.
The other defence lawyers, agreed with his submissions.
The EFCC’s lawyer, Rotimi Oyedepo, has however urged the court to dismiss the two applications for being frivolous.
On the first application, the lawyer argued that the charge was validly laid before the court.
On the second application, Mr Oyedepo maintained that the Federal High Court is the only court empowered by an Act of the National Assembly to adjudicate on the matter.
Ruling on the applications has been reserved while the trial of the accused persons is expected to commence tomorrow.