By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
ABUJA—The Federal High Court in Abuja, yesterday, gave the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, the nod to dock the erstwhile Director General of the Nigerian Broadcasting Commission, NBC, on an amended 15-count criminal charge bordering on alleged N2.9 billion fraud.
The former NBC DG is facing trial alongside the Director of Finance and Accounts, Mr. Patrick Areh, Mr. Basil Udotai and Babatunji Amure.
Trial Justice, Gabriel Kolawole, slated December 13 to take plea of the defendants who are currently on administrative bail.
The trial which was initially scheduled to commence on Monday could not proceed owing to the inability of the EFCC to serve the 3rd and 4th defendants (Udotai and Amure) with copies of the amended charge before the court.
EFCC lawyer, Mr. Maaji Dabi, told the court that the prosecution found it difficult to reach the two defendants, even as he requested for five days adjournment to enable him to perfect the service process.
However, the two defendants who were present in court, told the trial judge that they had already obtained copies of the charge from the 1st and 2nd defendants.
The duo, through their lawyers, Mr. A. N. Ikoro and Mr. F. I. Chude, said they were ready to waive the issue of service since they already had copies of the charge against them.
Similarly, counsel to the 1st and 2nd defendants, Mr. S. I. Ameh, SAN and Mr. James Onoja, SAN, urged the court to compel the EFCC to allow the accused persons to enter their plea to the 15-count amended charge.