Justice Muslim Hassan of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos, has granted an application by counsel to former Minister of State for the Federal Capital Territory, Oloye Jumoke Akinjide, Chief Bolaji Ayorinde, SAN, release his client’s international passport in order for her to be able to travel to the United Kingdom, for her daughter’s wedding.
This is just as the court adjourned the trial to March 6, 2019.
Akinjide along with Senator Ayo Adeseun and Chief Olanrewaju Otiti, who is now of the All Progressives Congress, APC, are facing trial on an amended 24-count charge bordering on money laundering to the tune of N650 million.
Counsel for Adeseun and Otiti, also brought an application before the court, seeking that the Judge should recuse himself from the trial on the grounds that he was a former employee of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and would, therefore, be bias.
Consequently, Justice Hassan fixed March 6, to rule on the application.
The defendants were re-arraigned before Justice Hassan on January 16, 2018 on the amended charges.
A prosecution witness, Usman Zakari, had told the court in his evidence that the defendants collected the money at the Dugbe branch of Fidelity Bank in Ibadan, Oyo State, on the standing instruction of a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke.
Investigations by the EFCC had revealed that the N650 million was part of a total sum of N23 billion, which Diezani had allegedly warehoused in the bank in the buildup to the 2015 general election.