From Ahmed IIdris Birnin Kebbi
A former Kebbi State Governor Saidu Usman Dakingari was yesterday granted more time to attend to his ill health condition in the United Kingdom by the Federal High Court,Birnin-Kebbi.
The Counsel to the former Governor, Eyitayo Fatogun who filed affidavit with medical documents before the Court that his client, who was currently receiving medical treatment in United Kingdom for diabetic could not appear before the court due to the swelling legs that worsened his health condition.
The EFCC lead Prosecutor, Johnson Ojogbena who had earlier urged the court to invoke section 394 of ACJA based on the last ruling of the court on the matter described the medical documents tendered before the court as “mere facts” which was prepared by a pharmacist not medical doctor.
He argued that the 4th defendant was trying to disobey the court for not appearing and asked the court to invoke section 934 as promised by the court in the last sitting that “ if the 4th defendant failed to appear in court yesterday, the court will not wait for the prosecutor before it invokes section 934.”
The EFCC prosecutor told the court that the 2nd and 3rd defendants are being subjected to stress because of attitude of 4th defendant stressed that by issue warrant arrest would amount to fairness to other defendants who have been coming to the court.
But, Counsel to the former Governor, Fatogun asked the court to discontinuance the prosecutor’s submission, argued that the medical document was duly presented by medical doctor and deposed by a lawyer in his office.
In his ruling, the Presiding Judge, Justice Simeon Amobeda,after hours listened to all parties counsels ruled that based on fresh facts before the court, the court could not invoked section 394 of Administration Criminal Justice Act(ACJC) which mandated the court to issue warrant arrest if defendant failed to appear before the court despite been served.
He further said that, “ it is only the living that could stand for trial “saying that base on constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria section 36,the defendant should be allow to take of his health properly and faced his trial.
The Judge who also ordered the other defendants to deposit their international passports to the Register said they must all be brought to the court on the next adjourned date.
He, however, adjourned the case till September 24,2018 for all the defendants to take their pleas.