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Court chides Police over handling of Egbegbe’s case

By Innocent Anaba & Onozure Dania

LAGOS— A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, yesterday, berated the Nigeria Police Force, NPF, over its handling of the ongoing trial of a film maker, Olajide Kazeem, popularly called Seun Egbegbe, and other accused persons charged with multi-million dollars fraud.

Others standing trial alongside Egbegbe are Oyekan Ayomide, Lawal Kareem, Olalekan Yusuf and Muyideen Shoyombo.

This came as a Lagos High Court sitting at Igbosere dissolved the threeyear-old marriage of a popular On Air Personality, OAP, Toke Makinwa, with her estranged husband, Maije Amaju Ayida.

Judicial symbol

At the resumed hearing in the matter, yesterday, the prosecution failed again to produce it first witness, Inspector Bello Abubakar, who had earlier testified before the court but was yet to conclude his testimony.

Abubakar had failed to appear in court to conclude his testimony despite several adjournments a situation that made the court to issue bench warrant for the production of the witness at the last adjourned date.

The prosecutor, Innocent Anyigor informed the court of various attempt to get the witness who he said was out of the jurisdiction of the court did not yield the desired result.

Meanwhile, the trial judge, Justice Oluremi Oguntoyinbo, expressed disappointment over the way and manner the police was handling the case.

Dissolves Toke’s marriage

Meanwhile,  Justice Morenike Obadina has dissolved the three-year-old marriage, which was contracted at the Federal Marriage Registry, Ikoyi, Lagos on January 15, 2014.

Makinwa, a television host and co-host on Morning Drive at Rhythm 93.7 FM, had approached the court on March 9, 2016, for the dissolution of the celebrated marriage between her and Ayida on the ground of adultery.

She had told the court in the petition that the marriage has broken down irretrievably.

The petitioner dragged her ex- husband Ayida, alongside his girlfriend Anita Solomon, with whom he had committed the adultery before the court.

Makinwa had told the court in the petition that   she can no longer tol erate the first respondent’s adultery, adding that since the marriage was contracted the first respondent has behaved in such a way that she cannot reasonably be expected to continue to live with him.

She further stated that her husband was cruel to her, noting that there were irreconcilable differences in the marriage.

During the trial which commenced on March 16 2017, the petitioner testified for herself, she called no other witness and tendered some documents including their marriage certificate issued by the Federal Marriage Registry, which were admitted as exhibits.

In her testimony, she said that cohabitating with the first respondent ceased on November 8, 2015, with no child in the marriage.

She stated that the first respondent committed adultery with  the second respondent and fathered a child by her, in July 2015, while they were still husband and wife.

Makinwa described Ayida as a pathological liar who abused her mentally, continued with the adulterous relationship with the second respondent even after the child was born.

Justice Obadina in her judgment held that since the first respondent filed an answer to the petition but did not give evidence in support thereof, “The  position of the law is settled that pleading do not amount to evidence, pleadings on which no evidence was led is demmed abandoned.”

“Therefore Ayida’s answer is deemed abandoned, the effect of this is that the petitioner’ evidence is unchallenged and uncontroverted.”

The Judge said the issue of cruelty and intolerable which the petitioner relied on was established when the first respondent who committed adultery continued to flaunt his adulterous relationship in her face and also threatened with separation at the slightest disagreement.

“In this case, the petitioner relies on cruelty, irreconcilable differences, intolerable, the petitioner can not be expected to live with such conduct and behaviour which amounts to cruelty. I hereby hold that the marriage has broken down on the ground of intolerable behaviour,” she said.

Pronouncing the dissolution of the marriage, Justice Obadina said: “I hereby pronounce a decree Nisi dissolving  the marriage between the petitioner Mrs Omotoke Makinwa and Mr Maje Amaju Ayida which was celebrated at the Federal Marriage Registry, Ikoyi, Lagos on 14 of January 2014.”




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