The Director of Media and Publicity of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Organisation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, who is under trial for money laundering, will have to find a surety or risk being re-arrested.
One of his sureties has applied to the Federal High Court in Lagos to withdraw from guaranteeing the defendant’s temporary freedom.
The surety, Wale Ajisebutu, told Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia that he urgently needed to make use of his Certificate of Occupancy (CofO).
He deposited it as one of the conditions for granting Fani-Kayode bail.
The judge was to consider the application Tuesday, but the defence, it was learnt, asked for another date.
The matter has been fixed for March 26 for hearing of the surety’s application and continuation of trial.
Fani-Kayode was accused of making a transaction exceeding N500, 000 on September 20, 2006, which was not done through a financial institution, by accepting N2.1 million in cash.
The money, said the prosecution, was paid into his personal bank account by his aide, Supo Agbaje, while he served as Minister of Culture and Tourism. He pleaded not guilty.
During last proceedings, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), which charged Fani-Kayode, accused his witness of lying to the court.
EFCC’s lawyer Mr. Festus Keyamo, while cross-examining the witness, Aderemi Ajidaun, accused him of being in court to “help” his friend and was not telling the truth.
This is because his evidence contradicted Agbaje’s earlier testimony that it was Fani-Kayode who personally gave him the cash to pay into his account.
“Agbaje never had direct access to Fani-Kayode and could not have collected cash from him. Every staff had to pass through me to reach the honourable minister,” Ajidaun said.
Keyamo asked the witness: “Will it surprise you that Mr Agbaje came to this court and never mentioned you?” Ajidaun replied: “I’ll be very surprised.”
Keyamo said: “Agbaje said the accused person (Fani-Kayode) gave him the money. It means that between the two of you, someone is telling this court a lie.”
The alleged offence contravenes the Money Laundering Act.