Tomorrow is former Delta State Governor James Ibori’s date with destiny, as the Court of Appeal of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) will deliver a ruling regarding his extradition trial.
On October 17, a court of first instance had ruled that Ibori be extradited to the United Kingdom (UK) where he is wanted on charges of money laundering, credit card fraud and official theft. Similar charges had led to the conviction of his wife, Theresa Nkoyo; his associates, Udoamaka Okoronkwo (nee Onuigbo) and his elder sister, Christine Ibori-Ibie.
Bhadresh Gohil, his UK-based lawyer, is also awaiting sentencing after he was found guilty in two separate trials pertaining to his assistance of Ibori in allegedly laundering vast sums of money allegedly looted from Delta State using UK banks, real estate firms, offshore accounts and cronies.
Ibori has remained in jail in Dubai as he contests his extradition to the UK. He recently received a visit from a Delta lawmaker, who confided in associates that he was shocked to see how diminished Ibori has become in his Dubai jail.
If the court rules against him tomorrow, he will most certainly appeal again to the Dubai Supreme Court. UK sources, however, said if the ruling goes against him, it would be clear to him that further appeals would be futile.