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Alleged N2.2bn fraud: Fayose’s trial stalls as EFCC witness’s absence

The ex-governor was also alleged to have on the same day “received a cash payment of $5,000,000 from Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, the then Minister of State for Defence, which sum exceeded the amount authorised by law and you thereby committed an offence contrary to sections 1 and 16(d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended) and punishable under Section 16 (2)(b) of the same Act.”

The N2.2bn fraud trial of a former governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose, and a firm, Spotless Investment Limited, was stalled on Monday over the inability of the prosecution to bring its witness to court.

The prosecuting counsel for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), told Justice C.J. Aneke of the Federal High Court in Lagos that a relative of the witness scheduled to come had been admitted into a COVID-19 isolation centre.

Jacobs urged the judge to consequently adjourn the case.

The defence counsel, Mr Olalekan Ojo (SAN), said he had no objection to the request for an adjournment.

Justice Aneke adjourned the matter till October 20, 2020.

In the charges, the EFCC alleged, among other things, that Fayose, on June 17, 2014, “took possession of the sum of N1, 219, 000,000 to fund your 2014 gubernatorial campaign in Ekiti State, which you reasonably ought to have known formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful act, to wit: criminal breach of trust/stealing.”

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The ex-governor was also alleged to have on the same day “received a cash payment of $5,000,000 from Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, the then Minister of State for Defence, which sum exceeded the amount authorised by law and you thereby committed an offence contrary to sections 1 and 16(d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended) and punishable under Section 16 (2)(b) of the same Act.”

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The EFCC also alleged that Fayose purchased a property known as No.44, Osun Crescent, Maitama, Abuja, for N200m in the name of “your elder sister, Mrs Moji Oladeji.”

But Fayose and Spotless Investment Limited pleaded not guilty to the charges.

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Victor Akande

Victor Akande, a blogger by profession for the past 7 years. He studied Mathematics at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka Contact: +2348053316946 Twitter: @Newsflash2471

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