Ikechukwu Nnochiri – Abuja
The Federal High Court, Abuja, has fixed Tuesday for ruling on the money laundering case involving a former National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olisa Metuh.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had arraigned Metuh alongside his firm, Destra Investment Limited in 2016 for allegedly receiving N400million from the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) prior to the 2015 presidential election, without contract approval or execution.
Justice Okon Abang had on November 26 last year adjourned the matter for judgement after all the parties adopted their final briefs of argument.
While the EFCC, through its lawyer, Mr. Sylvanus Tahir, urged the court to uphold its case, convict and sentence the defendant accordingly, Metuh’s legal team asked the court to discharge and acquit the former PDP spokesman.
They contended that the anti-graft agency failed to establish a prima-facie case against the defendants.
EFCC had in April 2016 closed its case after it called eight witnesses to testify against the defendants.
While Metuh called 15 witnesses to establish his innocence on the charge, his firm called one witness to testify on its behalf.
EFCC had alleged that the N400million was electronically wired from an account that ONSA operated with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to Metuh via an account no. 0040437573, which his firm operated with Diamond Bank Plc.
The Commission told the court that the fund which was released to Metuh and his firm by the former NSA, Col. Sambo Dasuki, was part of about $2.1billion earmarked for the purchase of arms to fight insurgency in the North East.