October 6, 2017

Alleged N4.7bn fraud: Court fixes Oct. 9 for continuation of trial of Ladoja

A Federal High Court in Lagos will on Oct. 9 resume trial of a former Governor of Oyo State, Rashidi Ladoja, who is charged with N4.7 billion fraud.

Ladoja is being tried alongside a former State Commissioner for Finance, Waheed Akanbi.

Justice Mohammed Idris adjourned the case on Friday at the instance of Akanbi’s lawyer, Mr Adeyinka Olumide-Fusika.

He had requested that an official from Oyo State should be summoned by the court to tender some documents as exhibits.

Olumide-Fusika had attempted to tender the document during the proceedings on Friday, but counsel to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr Oluwafemi Olabisi, opposed it.

He contended that Olumide-Fusika failed to lay proper foundation for the tendering of the documents.

But Olumide-Fusika maintained that the document was important to the defence of Akanbi and urged the court to summon the official to appear for the purpose of tendering the document as an exhibit.

His application for adjournment was not opposed by other defence counsel.

Consequently, Justice Idris adjourned the case until Oct. 9 to allow for the invitation and appearance of the official.

Newsmen report that Ladoja and Akanbi are being prosecuted for alleged money laundering and unlawful conversion of funds  belonging to the state government to their own.

In one of the counts, Ladoja and Akanbi were accused of converting N1.9 billion belonging to the state to personal use sometime in 2007.

The EFCC also accused Ladoja of removing  600,000 pounds from the state coffers in 2007 which he sent to one Bimpe Ladoja, who was at the time in London as well as converting another N42 million to purchase a  bullet-proof Land Cruiser Jeep.

The offences contravened the provisions of Sections 17(a) and 18 (1) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2004.