By OLA AJAYI
IBADAN – THE valedictory court session in honour of two dead lawyers in Oyo State hindered the continuation of the corruption charges preferred against the former governor of the state, Otunba Adebayo Alao-Akala and two of his aides.
The governor, Senator Hosea Agboola, who served then as Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters and an Ibadan-based businessman, Mr. Femi Babalola, are facing charges over alleged N25 billion misappropriated during their administration.
Explaining why the court could not sit, a counsel to the accused persons, Mr. Mamman Usman, SAN, told newsmen after the aborted court sitting, that the event was held as a mark of respect for the dead lawyers. He said counsel to both parties met and suggested that the case be adjourned to July 13.
Meanwhile, scores of loyalists of the ex-governor had thronged the court as early as 8 a.m. to identify with him and this made the State High Court, Room 2 to be congested.
Akala, who strolled into the court at 8.44 a.m. was clad in white clothes and black hat and was received by his supporters with a shout that broke the normal silence on court premises. He had to remind them that they were in court.
Counsel to both parties had sat expecting the judge to take his seat, but they were later invited into the chamber for discussion with the judge. After the short meeting, they came out and chose a date.
Other aides of the former governor in court included former Secretary to the State Government, Chief Layiwola Olakojo; a former commissioner, Dr. Kola Balogun; Dr. Gbola Adetunji, Mr. Jacob Adetoro, former State Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Chief Dejo Afolabi and party women leaders from wards and local government areas.