Tthe National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Chief Olisa Metuh, who was arraigned this morning before the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Maitama in Abuja, on charges bordering on destruction of evidence, has been sent back to Kuje Prison.
Metuh, who allegedly destroyed his statement which he made under caution to the operatives of the EFCC, pleaded not guilty to the two counts.
The offences were said to be contrary to sections 166 and 326 of the Penal Code Act.
Metuh who was arraigned before Justice Ishaq Bello, has been on remand in prison, pending when he would fulfil the bail conditions imposed on him by a Federal High Court in Abuja.
Like on Tuesday, Metuh was in handcuffs, when he was brought into the court this month morning.
The handcuffs were later removed as he waited to be taken before a judge.
Count one of the charge contains allegation of destruction of a statement he had given at the commission, to prevent it from being produced, while count two of the charge revolves around allegations of mischief, all punishable under section 327 of the Penal Code Act.
After pleading not guilty to the said charges, counsel to the EFCC, Sylvanus Tahir, asked for more time to allow his team present witnesses and evidence in support of the allegations against the politician.
Justice Bello, who is the Chief Judge of the FCT High Court, noted that the EFCC must produce three witnesses during the next sitting, without fail.
He noted that it was needless to have the case brought before him if it was already ongoing at a Federal High Court.
But EFCC counsel, Sylvanus, explained that the new charges, filed on January 18, were not the same as those currently being heard at the Federal High Court.
The matter was adjourned till January 25, for hearing of an application for bail, while information would be relayed later on whether or not the substantive suit would be heard Friday.
The EFCC had on January 12 accused Metuh of shredding a confessional statement he made to its operatives, indicating it would charge him separately for attempting to destroy a major evidence in the case against him.
“The tearing of statement is tantamount to willful destruction of government property and it is a serious offence,” EFCC official had said.
“Also the fact that he obstructed operatives from performing their job is also a criminal offence. We will explore the possibility of filling a separate charge against him at the Federal Capital Territory High Court.”
The PDP spokesman is being prosecuted before the Federal High Court in Abuja with respect to charges of money laundering involving N400m, part of funds meant for procurement of arms which he allegedly collected from the office of the National Security Adviser in November 2014.
The PDP spokesperson allegedly tore his written statement and attempted to chew it while he was being investigated for the money laundering case.
Justice Ishaq Bello ordered that Metuh be further remanded in prison and adjourned hearing of his bail application till Monday.