- The trial of Nicholas Ashinze and some security consultants has taken a new turn
- The evidence brought against them has been dismissed by the judge
- Justice Kolawole refused to admit the bank statement presented as evidence
The Dasukigate trial has taken a new turn. Nicholas Ashinze and some security consultants who are being tried for their alleged roles in a N1.5 billion fraud charge heard some good news.
On Tuesday, February 14, some of the document brought against them have been overturned. Justice Gabriel Kolawole of the Federal High Court, Abuja rejected some bank documents tendered by the EFCC.
Refusing to admit the document with which the EFCC sought to establish its case against the five defendants, Kolawole said the bank statement, account opening mandate, and the certificate of clearance sought to be tendered by government on the ground that they were not brought to court by the appropriate person known to law.
According to the Judge, an EFCC operative, Hassan Seidu, brought documents that were mainly computer generated and he was not the appropriate and proper person known to law to tender such documents.
The court said that the the markers of the documents who are officials of Heritage and Enterprise Banks Plc should have come to court to tender the documents by themselves.
Citing the law, Mr Kolawole said that in line with the provisions of the Evidence Act, the EFCC operative cannot be cross examined on the documents he did not make; as anything said by him will amount to hearsay which cannot be given any probate value by the court.
It was said that the operative had merely received the documents from the two banks, the witness had not established his knowledge of the document or that he participated in their making.
Ofem Uket the EFCC lawyer, after the ruling, sought an adjournment of the trial. The request was granted and the case was adjourned till March 7, April 13, and May 4 for continuation of trial.
Meanwhile, the federal government on Tuesday, January 31, applied for a protection of its witnesses in the trial of the former national security adviser Sambo Dasuki.
In its second application for secret trial, prosecuting counsel, Oladipo Okpeseyi prayed the court to protect the witnesses that will testify against Dasuki.