Wed. Jul 17th, 2024

Justice Inyang Edem Ekwo of the Federal High Court Abuja has fixed December 12 to deliver ruling in the admissibility of six different statements implicating former Attorney General of the Federation, Mohanned Adoke in a $1.1billion alleged Malabu oil fraud.

The judge fixed the date on Wednesday after taking arguments from Chief Wole Olanipekun, SAN who stood for Adoke in the trial and Mr Ofem Uket who argued the case of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The six statements in dispute were made on different days by an oil magnate, Aliyu Abubakar who is standing trial alongside Adoke in the alleged multi-billion dollars oil fraud.

Olanipekun, while adopting his final address in the trial- within-trial on the admissibility of the statements, told the court that the disputed statements were made in gross violation of Section 17 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015.

Whlie canvassing that the statements be thrown out for being worthless, Olanipekun argued that the EFCC coerced the maker of the statements to implicate his client in the alleged multi-billion dollars oil fraud at all costs.

Among others, the senior lawyer said the blunder of the EFCC during investigations into the alleged fraud was monumental and has no precedent in law.

However, following the stepping aside of Bala Sanga as the prosecutor, the new man, Mr Ofem Uket urged the court to admit the statements, adding that evidence of operatives had indicated that the they were made freely, voluntarily and under a conducive atmosphere.

Uket insisted that counsel to Aliyu Abubakar was always with him throughout the period of the investigation, hence the allegations of duress was an afterthought.

Justice Ekwo while fixing December 12 to make his decision known however said in case the ruling is ready earlier than the date, parties would be adequately communicated.

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By Joy

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