Surety Withdraws from Metuh’s Trial, Ekweremadu Steps In

A mild drama ensued at the resumed hearing of N400m fraud allegation against former National Publicity Secretary of Peoples Democratic Party, Chief Olisa Metuh when one of Metuh’s suretie approached the court to withdraw from the trial. .
Dr Usim-Wilson Clement Chinaka, who had stood as a surety for the embattled former Publicity Secretary, prayed the court for withdrawal from the trial.
Dr.Usim-Wilsin was caught at the background that he has been treated unfairly by Methh. Although, he did not elaborate further but it was insinuated that Metuh did not meet up with the agreement reached with him.
Usim-Wilson, in a motion filed and dated October 4, 2016, before Justice Okon Abang prayed the court to remove her name from the lists of people that stood as suretie for Metuh. She did not give reason.
On his part Metuh also filed a motion dated October 14, praying the court to allow him replace Usim-Wilson, with the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu.
However, counsel to Usim-Wilson,Clement Chinaka, prayed the court to first of all take the application for withdrawal before taking that of replacement since it was filed before that of replacement.
He said:” Usim-Wilson,in her application prayed the court to withdraw her suretieship, while that of Metuh sought to substitute her with Ike Ekweremadu”
No objection was raised by both counsels in the matter except for Metuh’s lawyer Onyechi Ikpeazu(SAN) who observed that if the application for withdrawal is taken before that of replacement, Metuh may stand the risk of going back to prisons but however urged the court to use its discretion.
Metuh who is facing trial alongside his firm, was alleged to have received N400m from the Office of the National Security Adviser, ONSA, prior to the 2015 presidential election.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) told the court that the N400m which it said was released to the defendants by the erstwhile NSA, Col. Sambo Dasuki, retd,‎ ‎was part of about $2.1billion earmarked for the purchase of arms to prosecute the war against insurgency in the country.
It was said the fund was electronically wired from an account ONSA operated with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, to Metuh, via account no. 0040437573, which his firm operated with Diamond Bank Plc.
Justice Abang who is the trial judge in a short ruling held that it is deserving to take the application of Metuh first since he has been consistent in the trial.
The Judge further adjourned the case to October 27, to hear all the applications and also for continuation of trial.

Author: News Editor

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