Court fixes date for arraignment of Ondo Speaker, others

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By Akintunde Jacobs, Akure

An Ondo State High Court, sitting in Akure has fixed February 23 for the arraignment of the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Bamidele Oleyeloogun and two members of the assembly.

Recall that the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) had dragged the Speaker, former Clerk of the Assembly, Mr. Bode Adeyelu and three others staff to court for alleged N2.4 million seminar fraud.

The suspects included the lawmaker representing Akoko South West 1, Felemu Bankole, two civil servants attached to the Assembly; Olusegun Kayode and Afolabi O. J. were arraigned over the alleged fraud.

Oleyeloogun and others who were to be arraigned before the law court by the EFCC for the alleged misappropriation of the fund belonging to the Assembly could not on Monday, because of the faulty method of service of the court process.

The counsel to the lawmakers, Remi Olatubora told Justice O.S Kuteyi that the suspects could not be arraigned because they were not properly served the charges against them by the anti-graft agency.

According to him, the EFCC has not made the charges against the suspects available in order to prepare the defence. He added that the suspects were in the court based on media report.

But the counsel to the EFCC, K.U Kudus said he has served the suspects through the House of Assembly. He asked the court to proceed with the trial of the suspects.

In his reply Olatubora said personal service is compulsory in criminal proceedings and failure to do that would prevent the court from going ahead with the case.

Kudus asked the court to adjourn the matter for him to properly serve the suspects. He asked for a short adjournment for him to make copies of the charges available.

Justice Kuteyi, however, fixed the hearing of the trial to February 23.