EFCC Vs Akingbola: Court Fixes April 18 To Decide On Further Evidence Filing

 

 

A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has fixed April 18 to decide whether the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) can file additional evidence against former Managing Director of the defunct Intercontinental Bank Plc, Dr Erastus Akingbola.

Justice Mojisola Olatoregun fixed the date for ruling following the opposition of the former bank chief to the admissibility of some statements of accounts from Access Bank, which were sought to be tendered by the EFCC.

Akingbola through his lawyer, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN) insisted that the EFCC could not substitute a witness or file fresh evidence at this stage of the case since investigation has ended and trial has commenced.

But the counsel to the EFCC, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN) argued that by virtue of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, the prosecution was at liberty to file additional evidence any time before judgment.

The former bank MD is facing a 22-count amended charge of granting reckless credit facility, abuse of office and mismanagement of depositor’s funds.

He pleaded not guilty to the charge.

When the case came up for hearing on Friday, the lawyer to the anti-graft agency, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN) called his third witness, Uyoyou Ewhe, an Access Bank official, and sought to tender through him the statements of certain accounts opened in Access Bank.

READ ALSO: EFCC Recovers Over N117bn, Secures 192 Convictions In Three Months

Jacobs informed the court that he was forced to call Ewhe to come tender the documents because the intended witness who was to tender the documents, has left the bank and is no longer in the country.

This move was strongly opposed by Olanipekun, who argued that the documents were only freshly sourced, contrary to the law that before a criminal case is filed in court all investigations must have been concluded.

He said, “The prosecution was sourcing for evidence two days ago in a trial that started 10 years ago.

“You cannot substitute a witness in a criminal proceeding, substituting a witness amounts to sourcing for evidence contrary to the decision of the Supreme Court in the celebrated case of Enahoro against the Queen of 1965.

“If you don’t have your witnesses, you don’t have your witnesses; you cannot substitute witnesses.

“Section 83 of the Evidence Act prohibits admissibility of this type of document. We have addressed Your Lordship on the interest of Access Bank in this matter, which is undisguised.

“This witness, the maker of this document, is an official of Access Bank. Put succinctly, this document is an Access Bank document. And I daresay, the documents were made as a result of evidence already given, may be to patch up the evidence; it is a natural consequence which the court is called upon to assume,” the senior lawyer submitted.

However, Jacobs argued that, “The question of substituting a witness does not arise, and even if it arose, the prosecution is not limited to the list of witnesses in the proof of evidence originally filed.”

As to the argument that the documents sought to be tendered were freshly made, Jacobs said by virtue of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, the prosecution was at liberty to file additional evidence any time before judgment

He added that the documents were old statements of accounts of 1990.

“It is just the letter covering the documents and the certificate showing compliance that are new. It is new bottle with the old wine.”
Jacobs said, stressing that the documents were relevant to the case.

Ex-Intercontinental Bank Employee Testifies In Akingbola’s Trial

Ex-Intercontinental Bank Staff Testifies As Akingbola’s Trial Continues In Court
A file photo of Erastus Akingbola

 

A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Thursday heard how loans running into billions of naira owed to defunct Intercontinental Bank Plc by some companies were written off while some enjoyed some waivers.

The information came to light while a witness of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Jimoh Abdurahim, testified in the trial of the former Managing Director of the bank, Dr Erastus Akingbola.

Akingbola is facing a 22-amended charge bordering on misleading appearance of active trading in the shares of Intercontinental Bank, granting of reckless credit facilities, conversion, and mismanagement of depositor’s funds.

He, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Abdurahim, a former chief investigator of the defunct bank, who now works for Access Bank Plc, informed the court that some of the companies which benefitted from the privileges allegedly belonged to former Managing Director of Access Bank Plc, Aig Imokhude; his successor, Herbert Wigwe, and the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki.

He gave the name of one of the companies as United Alliance Company Limited, with non-performing loans of N4.5 billion, N4.27 billion, and N10.97 billion.

He testified that he was aware of some other companies allegedly owned by Senator Saraki and his late father, which were also indebted to Intercontinental Bank.

The court also heard that the CBN-appointed MD of Intercontinental Bank, Lai Alabi, was also a former Managing Director of Songai Farms Limited, a company said to be established by the Senate President.

The witness mentioned companies such as Dice trade Nigeria Limited, which was said to be indebted to the defunct bank, in the sum of N1,892,313,792.14; Joy Petroleum Limited – N3.932 billion, Linkers Limited – N3,617,694,988.99; and Skye View Property, which loan of N200.8 billion was allegedly written off by Alabi.

While being cross-examined by counsel to Akingbola and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr Wole Olanipekun, the witness claimed that he was aware that Intercontinental Bank has merged with Access Bank.

He added that before then, Intercontinental Bank was larger and bigger than Access Bank in asset and capital base.

Abdurahim also informed the court that as at the time Access Bank took over Intercontinental bank, he was aware it had branches and subsidiaries internationally, including Ghana and the United Kingdom.

He claimed that at that time, Imokhude and Wigwe were MD and Deputy MD respectively at the Acess Bank.

The witness, however, said he would not confirm the suggestion put to him by Mr Olanipekun that “some people at the top” made Alabi the MD of Intercontinental Bank for the purpose of writing off their loans in the bank.

He also said he was not aware that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) queried Alabi for writing off the loans.

After listening to the testimony, Justice Mojisola Olatoregun has fixed Friday for the continuation of trial.

In the 22 amended charges filed before the court, the prosecution had alleged that Akingbola, while he was MD and CEO of Intercontinental Bank between November 2007 and July 2008, was involved in reckless approval of credit facilities without adequate security for a number of firms.

The prosecution also claimed that for instance, Akingbola approved a credit facility of N8 billion each to Soo-Kok Holding Limited, Tofa General Enterprises, Cinca Nigeria Limited, Harmony Trust and Investment Limited, Stanzus Investment Limited.

The EFCC said the alleged illegal transactions were carried out between May 2008 and May 2009 in contravention of “accepted practice or Intercontinental Bank Plc’s regulations.”

The Commission maintained that Akingbola violated Section 15(1)(a)(i) of the Failed Banks (Recovery of Debts) and Financial Malpractices in Banks Act, Cap F2, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004, and was liable to be punished under Section 16(1)(a) of the same Act.

EFCC Amends Charges, Re-arraigns Former Bank Chief, Erastus Akingbola

file photo

 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has re-arraigned the former Managing Director of the defunct Intercontinental Bank, Erastus Akingbola.

He was re-arraigned on a further amended 22-count charge before a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos. The former bank chief has again pleaded not guilty to the charge.

This is the third time Mr. Akingbola would be arraigned on the counts which border on the misleading appearance of active trading in the shares of Intercontinental Bank, granting of reckless credit facilities, conversion and mismanagement of depositors’ funds.

He was first arraigned in 2010 before Justice Mohammed Idris on a 26-count charge.

READ ALSO: Court To Hear Case On Final Forfeiture Of $8.4m Linked To Patience Jonathan April 12

The case was later transferred to Justice Charles Archibong who after two years struck it out for a lack of diligent prosecution by lawyers to the EFCC.

In the further amended charge, Count 1 says, “That you Dr. Erastus Akingbola. while being the MD & CEO of Intercontinental Bank Plc, between Nov. 2007 and July 2008 at Lagos and within the jurisdiction of the court, caused to be created a misleading appearance of active trading in the shares of Intercontinental Bank on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, by being connected with the utilization of an aggregate sum of N179,385,000,000 (billion) of the bank’s funds for the purchase of Intercontinental Bank Plc.’s shares and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 105(1) (a) of the Investment and Securities Act 2007 and punishable under Section 115(a) of the Same Act.”

Alleged Fraud: Trial Of Former Bank Chief, Erastus Akingbola Starts Afresh

Alleged Fraud: Trial Of Former Bank Chief, Erastus Akingbola Starts Afresh

 

The trial of the former managing director of the defunct Intercontinental Bank, Erastus Akingbola, has resumed at the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos.

The trial is coming back a year after the Supreme Court ordered Akingbola to face the charges against him. It’s also almost 10 years after the former bank chief was initially arraigned before Justice Mohammed Idris on a 26-count charge of fraud, granting reckless credit facility, abuse of office and mismanagement of depositors’ funds.

The case was later transferred to Justice Charles Archibong on October 25, 2010, but two years later, the judge struck out the charge for want of diligent prosecution by lawyers to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

However, on February 20, 2015, the Court of Appeal, Lagos Division overturned the Federal High Court’s decision striking out the charges against Akingbola.

Akingbola’s appeal to Supreme Court was also dismissed by the apex court, and the court on May 18, 2018, ordered the former bank chief to return to the Federal High Court to answer to the charges preferred against him by the EFCC.

At the proceedings on Tuesday, the EFCC’s witness, Abdulrahim Jimoh, testified that as the Chief Inspector of Intercontinental Bank in November 2009, he discovered that Mr Akingbola acquired properties in London with the sum of £8.5m and £1.3m pounds allegedly diverted from the bank.

He said the bank discovered this after investigating a letter it received via email from Deutsche Bank of London.

Justice Mojisola Olatoregun has adjourned further proceedings in the matter till Wednesday, March 13.

Alleged N5bn Fraud: Supreme Court Orders Akingbola To Face Trial

Alleged N5bn Fraud: Supreme Court Orders Akingbola To Face Trial
File photo

 

The Supreme Court has ordered a former managing director of the defunct Intercontinental Bank Plc, Mr Erastus Akingbola, to return to the Federal High Court in Lagos for trial.

Mr Akingbola was ordered by the apex court on Friday in Abuja to face his trial on fraud charges to the tune of N5billion.

READ ALSO: FG Is Committed To Tackling Youth Unemployment – Osinbajo

The trial was terminated in April 2012 by Justice Charles Archibong whose decision in the case later earned him a compulsory retirement from the bench.

On Friday, however, a five-man panel of the apex court led by Justice Tanko Muhammad unanimously affirmed the February 20, 2015 judgment of the Court of Appeal in Lagos.

The appellate court had overturned the Federal High Court’s decision, striking out the charges.

READ ALSO: Troops Kill Two Terrorists, Arrest 11 Others After ‘Fierce Gunfight’

Justice Sidi Bage, who read the lead judgment of the apex court, said Akingbola’s appeal challenging the Court of Appeal’s verdict lacked merit.

He ordered that the case be remitted to the Federal High Court and handled by another judge in the Lagos Division and be given “expeditions trial”.

Justice Archibong, now retired, had in a judgment delivered on April 2, 2012, struck out the 26 counts against the former bank boss.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had filed the charges against Akingbola on the grounds that the prosecution was not diligent in the handling of the case.

The judge had, however, described the EFCC prosecution team as “a drain in the public purse” and directed the Attorney-General of the Federation to disband the team.

N47.1bn Theft Charges: Akingbola Files Appeal, Seeks Stay Of Proceedings

ERASTUS AkingbolaThe former Managing Director of the defunct Intercontinental Bank Plc, Erastus Akingbola, on Monday, asked the Lagos High Court, Ikeja, to stay proceedings in the N47.1 billion theft trial levelled against him by the Economic Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

His co-defendant, Mr Bayo Dada, the General Manager of Tropics Securities Ltd., also made a similar request before the presiding judge, Justice Lateef Lawal-Akapo.

Mr Akingbola’s counsel, Wole Olanipekun, who filed an application to stay the proceedings, told Justice Lawal-Akapo that the application was premised on an appeal challenging his ruling of May 2.

On May 2, Justice Lawal-Akapo had dismissed an application by the defendants seeking to quash the charges against them. With that dismissal, the court then assumed jurisdiction to hear the matter and fixed Monday June 23 for arraignment.

Dissatisfied with the ruling, Mr Akingbola headed to the Court of Appeal where he filed a notice of appeal.

His lawyer, Olanipekun, therefore informed Justice Lawal-Akapo that the Court of Appeal had already fixed July 3 for hearing of the appeal; he urged the court to wait for the outcome of the proceedings, in the interest of justice.

Counsel to the 2nd defendant, Prof Taiwo Osipitan, aligned with his submissions. He further urged the court to adjourn proceedings pending the hearing and determination of Mr Akingbola’s appeal.

Counsel to the EFCC, Mr Godwin Obla, said, though, he had only just been served the application for stay of proceedings, he was, however, willing to respond orally on points of law to accelerate proceedings.

He urged the defendants to move their application and to desist from seeking an adjournment through the backdoor.

In a short ruling, Justice Lawal-Akapo granted the request of the defence counsel and adjourned till July 11 for arguments on the application to stay proceedings.

Court Dismisses Akingbola’s Application To Quash Charges

AkingbolaA Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja on Friday dismissed an application by a former Managing Director of the defunct Intercontinental Bank Plc, Mr Erastus Akingbola, seeking to quash the charges of stealing 47 billion Naira filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.

The EFCC is prosecuting Mr Akingbola along with his business associate, Mr Bayo Dada. Both men are charged with defrauding the bank (now Access Bank Plc) and stealing its money in 2009 while Akingbola was its Managing Director.

Presiding Justice Lateef Lawal-Akapo, in his ruling, dismissed the two separate applications filed by Akingbola and Dada, seeking to quash the 22-count charge against them.

The judge held that he found no merit in the applications.

With this ruling, the court has effectively assumed jurisdiction to hear the case.

Mr Akingbola’s counsel, Mr Wole Olanipekun, had argued that the state High Court lacked jurisdiction to hear the charges because they were capital market and banking related issues

Professor Taiwo Osipitan, who represented Mr Dada, had also maintained that only the Federal High Court had exclusive jurisdiction on the charges.

But the judge dismissed the lawyers’ contentions and held that the charges before him were of stealing, receiving stolen property and advance fee fraud, on which his court had jurisdiction.

The court also distinguished the matter from the one in which the Court of Appeal quashed the charges instituted against a former Managing Director of Finbank Plc, Mr Okey Nwosu, before another judge of the Lagos High Court, Ikeja.

Justice Lawal-Akapo said: “The offences canvassed in Okey Nwosu’s case had their roots in capital market. “In the present case, the offences charged are stealing, receiving stolen property and advance fee fraud”.

The judge also dismissed the allegation by Mr Olanipekun that the charges instituted against his client amounted to double jeopardy and abuse of court process as similar charges had been instituted against Mr Akingbola at the Federal High Court, Lagos.

The judge held that the defence failed to substantiate the allegation, as it did not produce the charges filed at the Federal High Court as evidence to back its claim.

He agreed with the prosecuting counsel, Mr Godwin Obla, that section 251(3) of the Constitution had preserved the power of the court to try the defendant for the charges.

He, therefore, fixed June 23, 24 and 25 for re-arraignment and trial.

The defendants were first arraigned on May 31, 2011 before Justice Habeeb Abiru, now Justice of the Court of Appeal, who was then presiding over the case at the Lagos High Court, Ikeja.

Trial had been concluded and the matter had been adjourned for adoption of parties’ final written addresses when Abiru was suddenly elevated to the Court of Appeal.

Abiru had adjourned the matter till November 15, 2011 but he was sworn in along with 11 others as a Justice of the Court of Appeal on November 5, 2011.

Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo, who took over the matter, was later transferred out of the Criminal Division of the Lagos High Court, after the defendants were re-arraigned before him.

The matter was then re-assigned to Justice Lawal-Akapo.

N212b Fraud: Court Refuses To Register Foreign Judgment Against Akingbola

A Lagos High Court sitting in Igbosere area of Lagos Island, today discharged an ex-parte order which ordered the former Managing Director of the defunct Intercontinental Bank, Erastus Akingbola to pay Access Bank £654 million that’s about N212.2bn.

The High Court of Justice, Queens Bench in London, had on August 1, 2012, ordered Mr Akingbola to pay Access Bank the money for some fraudulent practices committed when he was in charge of the defunct Intercontinental bank which was acquired by Access Bank on the 31st of January 2012.

In a bid to enforce the London Court judgment in Nigeria, Access Bank had approached Justice Adedayo Oyebanji of the Lagos High Court with an ex-parte application. In the ex-parte application, the bank sought to register the foreign judgment and the accompanying order of Justice Michael Burton, dated September 13, 2012.
Justice Oyebanji had granted the request of Access Bank by registering the London judgment and ordering Mr Akingbola to pay the judgment sum.

Dissatisfied with the decision, Mr Akingbola, through his lawyer, Wole Olanipekun (SAN), filed an application before Justice Babajide Candide-Johnson of the same court seeking to quash the registration of the foreign judgment for lack of jurisdiction.

In a ruling on the application today, Justice Candide-Johnson discharged the ex-parte order on the grounds that the subject matter of the London judgment, an unlawful share purchase orchestrated by Intercontinental Bank and Mr Akingbola’s breach of statutory duties as director of the Bank were matters relating to the provisions of the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA), which the British judge admitted he relied totally on but which only Nigerian Courts and specifically the Federal High Court could properly exercise jurisdiction.

Justice Candide-Johnson then held that since Federal High Courts alone have exclusive jurisdiction on CAMA related cases, his court could not have entertained the claims leading up to the judgment and consequently could not register same as that would make it a judgment of the court.

The judge, however, refused Mr Akingbola’s application seeking to restrain Access Bank from enforcing the London judgment in any other court.

Akingbola Challenges Jurisdiction Of Court To Enforce London Court Judgment

The Former Managing Director of the defunct Intercontinental Bank Plc. Mr. Erastus Akingbola has challenged the jurisdiction of a Lagos High Court to register a N212.2 billion judgment delivered against him by a London court.

The London court  had ordered Akingbola to pay Access Bank the sum of N212.2  billion (£654 million) for some sharp and fraudulent practices committed when he was in charge of the defunct intercontinental bank, which has now been taken over by Access Bank.

In order to enforce the judgment in Nigeria, the judgement creditor, (Access Bank) in an ex-parte application brought before Justice Adedayo Oyebanji of the Lagos High Court sought registration of the judgment and the accompanying order of Justice Burton of the London Court.

The judgment was dated September 13, 2012.

Justice Oyebanji in her ruling on the ex-parte ordered Mr Akingbola, to pay Access Bank Plc, the judgment sum of N212.2bn.

Following the transfer of Justice Oyebanji, the case went before Justice Candide Johnson who today listened to arguments from Mr Akingbola’s counsel, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN). The lawyer asked the court to quash the registration of the foreign judgment for lack of jurisdiction.

Olanipekun argued that the judgment creditor (Access Bank) failed to comply with some condition precedent before the registration could be completed.

He also submitted that Section 251 of the constitution vested jurisdiction on the Federal High Court and not on the State High Court.

The lawyer told the court that the suit filed in London by the judgement Creditor was before a Commercial Division of the court which is the equivalent of a Federal High Court here in Nigeria.

Besides, Olanipekun contended that the judgment of the foreign court which was registered was not certified in compliance with the rules of the London court hence it was invalid.

He stressed that the judgment debtor (Akingbola) was not put on notice before the registration of the foreign judgment was done.

Citing a plethora of legal authorities, he asked the court to allow his application and to set aside the ex-parte order earlier obtained by Access Bank.

Counsel to Access Bank, Koyinsola Ajayi (SAN) in his counter affidavit, dated October 10, 2013 informed the court that efforts by the court bailiff to serve Mr Akingbola before the registration of the judgment proved abortive as he allegedly evaded service.

On the issue of jurisdiction, Ajayi submitted that the proposition that only the Federal High Court has jurisdiction to register foreign judgments should be discountenanced as the State High Court has unlimited power to look into it.

He argued that Registration and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments, Cap 175 of 1958, and section 272 of the Constitution empowered the State High Court to adjudicate on the matter.

On the issue of certification of judgment, Ajayi submitted that it would be against public interest if the court refused to enforce a ‘’money judgment’’

He further informed the court that Akingbola had appealed against the judgment in the London court and his appeal had been refused. Ajayi therefore urged the court to dismiss the application and allow the registration of the judgment.

Channels Television’s judiciary correspondent, Shola Soyele reports that after listening to the arguments of both lawyers, Justice Candide Johnson fixed the 20th of February to give his ruling on the application.

Akingbola Seeks Application For Treatment Abroad

The former managing director of Intercontinental (Now Access) Bank, Mr. Erastus Akingbola has filed an application seeking the permission of the court to travel to the United Kingdom on the 15th of April for medical treatment.

Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo of the Lagos High Court Ikeja fixed the 10th of April to hear the arguments for and against the application.

The judge fixed the date after listening to arguments from counsel on both sides on the propriety of taking the application urgently.

Counsel To Mr Akingbola, Mr. Mike Igbokwe (SAN) informed the court that Akingbola had secured an appointment with  a doctor for the 15th of April at a Harley Street Hospital, London.

He stressed that such appointments are difficult to get and urged the court to hear the application urgently to enable the former intercontinental boss travel for his treatment and come back for his trial which had been fixed for July.

Counsel to the EFCC, Mr Godwin Obla however objected to the urgency of the application. He argued that the urgency was self-inflicted and instead requested for more time to study the application and respond to it.

Justice Onigbanjo pointed out that the issue was one that could be argued when the counsel made his case objecting to the granting of the application as he could not shut out the applicants right to be heard before the travel date.

He therefore adjourned till the 10th of April.

EFCC Arrests Akingbola Ahead Of Tuesday’s Trial

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) will tomorrow, Tuesday, re-arraign the former Managing Director of Intercontinental Bank Plc, Mr. Erastus Akingbola, on charges of theft of the bank’s funds.

Meanwhile, the anti-graft agency in a statement released today said  it had arrested Mr. Akingbola in preparation for his arraignment before Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo of a Lagos High Court, Ikeja.

The former bank boss is currently being held at the Commission’s facility in Ikoyi, Lagos.

His re-arraignment  was necessitated  by the elevation of former trial judge, Justice Habeeb Abiru, to the Court of Appeal.  Justice Abiru had on the 22nd of October, 2012 adjourned the matter till the 22nd of November, 2012 for adoption of final addresses of the counsel in the matter.

He was, however, sworn in as a Justice of the Court of Appeal on the 5th of November, 2012.

The development rendered Justice Abiru “functus-officio” and there arose the need to re-assign the case to another judge for it to start de novo (afresh).

In the former charges,  the EFCC alleged that Mr. Akingbola and his aide, the General Manager, Tropics Finance Ltd, Mr. Bayo Dada, stole about N47.1 billion belonging to the bank.

N47.1billion fraud: Court denies Akingbola’s recall of witness

A Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja has rejected moves by former Intercontinental Bank boss, Erastus Akingbola, to recall a defence witness, Mrs Ayoola Ayinde, over his trial on N47.1billion fraud.

Mr Akingbola, was charged alongside his former business associate, Bayo Dada, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over alleged stealing of N47.1billion owned by the rested Intercontinental Bank (now Access Bank Plc).

He had applied to the court on October 9 to recall Mrs Ayinde, a former head of foreign operations of Intercontinental Bank to tender 75 documents as exhibits to shore up his case.

The documents were to explain the £8.5 million and £1.3 million transactions she carried out on Mr Akingbola’s instructions, which according to her, he authorized her to transfer to Fulgher Solicitors, a United Kingdom-based law firm under the bank’s regular transaction.

She was expected to tender the documents to show that the money transferred to Fulgher was owned by Rockson Engineering Ltd, an explanations that contradicted the charge before the court.

Counsel to Mr Akingbola, Chief Felix Fagoungbe, SAN has noted that “in the charge, the first defendant (Akingbola) is alleged to have stolen the bank’s money. We are now saying through these documents that the money belonged to Rockson and that the total amount on Rockson’s account was paid out based on the 75 instructions in the document including that of the first defendant.”

The EFCC counsel, Mr Godwin Obla, however objected the move to recall the witness. He submitted that it was a ploy by Akingbola’s counsel to delay the trial.

In his ruling, trial judge, Justice Habeeb Abiru held that recalling Mrs Ayinde was unnecessary because she had already tendered all the relevant documents she had in her possession as exhibits.

He further explained that, “there is nothing new the witness is coming to say. It is pointless for me to recall her. Of these 75 documents, only one is relevant to this charge and she has already tendered it and it was admitted by the court as Exhibit D4”.

He therefore ordered the defence to close its case if they had no further witnesses. The matter was then adjourned to the 23rd of Oct. at the instance of the defence who pleaded or more time to bring their last witness to court.