Nigeria: EFCC Seeks Separate Trial for Dasuki

15 November 2019

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission yesterday told an FCT High Court in Maitama it would seek a court order for a separate trial for former National Security Adviser (NSA), Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd) different from his seven other defendants.

Dasuki is being tried before the court in two separate cases alongside other defendants before Justice Hussein Baba-Yusuf by EFCC since 2015 on alleged misappropriation of the fund meant for the purchase of arms.

At the resumed sitting in one of the cases, EFCC counsel, Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), expressed frustration over the continued absence of Dasuki, who is the first defendant in the case.

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Other defendants in the suit are a former General Manager at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Aminu Baba Kusa; Acacia Holdings Limited and Reliance Referral Hospital.

He told the court that the prosecution had filed a motion dated November 4, seeking the continuation of the trial in Dasuki's absence, adding that the prosecution was served with a counter-affidavit yesterday's morning.

Jacobs, however, said that the best thing to do in the present circumstance was the unbundling of the case so that Dasuki would be separated from other defendants.

He said: "We can't be in the same place for four years without moving."

He, therefore, told the court that the charge against the defendants might be amended to remove Dasuki's name to enable other defendants to face their trial without further delays.

He added that separate charges would be filed against other defendants in both cases in which Dasuki is involved before the court.

He therefore prayed the court for an adjournment to perfect this.

Responding to this, counsel for Baba-Kusa, Solomon Umoh (SAN) submitted that Dasuki is central to the charge against other defendants, adding that, "If he is separated, how can we get a fair hearing?"

The trial judge, Justice Hussaini Baba-Yusuf, however, gave an open adjournment and asked the prosecution to file the amendment and serve same on the defendants for them to come to court and take fresh pleas.

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