Nigeria: Alleged N700m Fraud - Court Adjourns Trial of Edo APC Guber Candidate

The Federal High Court sitting in Benin, on Thursday adjourned the trial of the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), in the September 19, Edo governorship election, Osagie Ize-Iyamu and four others, till July 7.

Mr Ize-Iyamu and four others were supposed to appear on Thursday before Justice M.G. Umar over charges bordering on an alleged N700 million money laundering case filed against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The court had, in its last sitting in Benin on June 18, validated the corruption charges against the defendants and adjourned the case to July 2, for further hearing.

The four other defendants in the suit include former Edo State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Chairman, Dan Orbih; the state chairman of the party, Tony Aziegbemi; former Deputy Governor of Edo State Lucky Imasuen, and Efe Erimuoghae-Anthony.

The anti-graft agency, in Suit No. FHC/BE21C/ 2016, had filed eight count charges against the accused persons bordering on alleged illegal receipt of public funds to the tune of N700 million for the purpose of the 2015 general elections.

The EFCC further accused the defendants of conspiring among themselves to commit the offence in March, 2015, alleging that they took possession and control of the funds without any contract award.

However, on Thursday, there was no court sitting, but it was observed that some of the defendants and counsels were around the premises.

Speaking to journalists, counsel to Tony Aziegbemi, Pascal Ugbomhe, said the case had been adjourned till July 7.

Although he did not specify the reason why it was adjourned, he said, "it is a normal occurrence in court duties. It's nothing unusual to adjourn matters.

"The defendants and counsels have been in court since about 8am and the court officials informed us that the matter has been adjourned to July 7."


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