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Judge orders prisons to produce Vanguard’s former Chief Accountant

By  ABDULWAHAB ABDULAH & BARTHOLOWEM MADUKWE

LAGOS—A Lagos State  High Court, Igbosere, yesterday ordered the prisons in the state to produce former Chief Accountant of Vanguard Media Limited, Mr. Yhisa Badmus, 42, who is standing trial for allegedly stealing and defrauding the said company of N31, 751,700.

While adjourning the case to May 10, the trial judge, Justice Candide Johnson said “the production warrant shall hence be released to  prisons in Lagos for the 1st defendant (Yhisa Badmus) to be produced in court in the next adjourned date.
“As far as I am concerned, it is on your part (prosecution) to ask for a production warrant.”

The judge advised lawyers in the matter to take the case to the Lagos State Attorney General, Mr. Ade Ipaye, for assistance in ensuring that the matter which is before Justice Lateefa Bisola Okunnu of an Ikeja High Court and the one before him can be heard in just one court.

Yhisa Badmus was charged with a 38-count offence in two separate charges marked as ID/334C/2011 (Federal Republic of Nigeria V. Bhadmus Yhisa, Joseph Ejike Ezeobi, 42) and ID/335C/2011 (Federal Republic of Nigeria V. Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun, Ogbole Samuel, 41).

When Charge No. ID/334C/2011 was called up in the court, yesterday, with its outside surrounding filled with filths, Ezeobi’s counsel, Mr. Ajuweh Samuel, informed the court that the 2nd defendant was on administrative bail, while counsel to Badmus, Mr. Moses John Jesse, told the court that the 1st defendant could not be produced in court because the prosecution failed to issue a production warrant to the prison.

Ezeobi, who hails from Aballa-Uno in Ndokwa East Local Government Area of Delta State and worked as Circulation Supervisor in Vanguard Media Limited, was charged with the Islamic Accountant (Abiodun) on a 26-count offence of stealing and fraud, which reads:

1st Count: “Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun and Joseph Ejike Ezeobi between the 20th January, 2006 and 25th August, 2006 at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud conspired to commit felony to wit; stealing money property of Vanguard Media Limited.”

2nd Count: “Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun and Joseph Ejike Ezeobi between the 20th January, 2006 and 25th August, 2006 at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud fraudulently converted the sum of N2, 170, 000 (Two million One hundred and Seventy thousand naira) property of Vanguard Media Limited.”

3rd Count: “Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun and Joseph Ejike Ezeobi between the 11th October, 2006 and 27th December, 2006 at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud conspired to commit felony to wit; stealing money property of Vanguard Media Limited.”

4th Count: “Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun and Joseph Ejike Ezeobi between the 11th October, 2006 and 27th December, 2006 at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud fraudulently converted the sum of N2, 220, 000 (Two million Two hundred and Twenty thousand naira) property of Vanguard Media Limited.”

5th Count: “Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun and Joseph Ejike Ezeobi between the 8th January, 2007 and 28th March, 2007 at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud conspired to commit felony to wit; stealing money property of Vanguard Media Limited.”

6th Count: “Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun and Joseph Ejike Ezeobi between the 8th January, 2007 and 28th March, 2007 at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud fraudulently converted the sum of N2, 600, 000 (Two million Two hundred and Six hundred thousand naira) property of Vanguard Media Limited.”

7th Count: “Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun and Joseph Ejike Ezeobi between the 4th of April, 2007 and 30th May, 2007 at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud conspired to commit felony to wit; stealing money property of Vanguard Media Limited.”

8th Count: “Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun and Joseph Ejike Ezeobi between the 4th of April, 2007 and 30th May, 2007 at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud fraudulently converted the sum of N3, 220, 000 (Three million Two hundred and Twenty-Six thousand naira) property of Vanguard Media Limited.”

9th Count: “Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun and Joseph Ejike Ezeobi between the 6th of June, 2007 and 26th of July, 2007 at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud conspired to commit felony to wit; stealing money property of Vanguard Media Limited.”

10th Count: “Bhadmus Yhisa Abiodun and Joseph Ejike Ezeobi between the 6th of June, 2007 and 26th of July, 2007at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division with intent to defraud fraudulently converted the sum of N2, 750, 000 (Two million Seven hundred and Fifty thousand naira) property of Vanguard Media Limited.”

Jesse (Abiodun’s lawyer) told the court that the alleged offences were said to have been committed within the period of twelve months, adding that efforts was made to bring Abiodun (1st defendant), who joined Vanguard Media Limited on 15th December, 1993 as an Assistant Accountant and after four years was promoted to the post of Deputy Accountant, Inter to Chief Accountant in 2003, December before he was fired on 31st August 2009


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