Justice C.A. Balogun of the Lagos State Excessive Court docket sitting in Ikeja, on Tuesday, Might 16, 2023, dismissed the appliance filed by Nadabo Vitality Boss, Abubakar Ali Peters, looking for him to disqualify or recuse himself from sitting on the alleged N1.4bn oil subsidy fraud trial “on the allegation of probability of bias…..CONTINUE READING
The EFCC is prosecuting Abubakar and his firm, Nadabo Vitality Restricted, on a 27-count cost for allegedly utilizing solid paperwork to acquire the sum of N1,464,961,978.24 from the Federal Authorities as oil subsidy, after allegedly inflating the amount of Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, purportedly imported and equipped by the corporate.
One of many counts reads: “Nadabo Vitality Restricted and Abubakar Ali Peters, on or in regards to the third day of April, 2012 at Lagos, throughout the Lagos Judicial Division, with intent to defraud, fraudulently obtained the sum of N978,401,732.09 (9 Hundred and Seventy-eight Million 4 Hundred and One Thousand Seven Hundred and Thirty-two Naira 9 Kobo) from the Federal Authorities of Nigeria by falsely, claiming that the sum represented subsidy accrued to Nadabo Vitality Restricted beneath the Petroleum Assist Fund for the importation of 19,488,992 litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), which Nadabo Vitality Restricted presupposed to have bought from Ashland SA Geneva Switzerland, and transported the 19,488,992 litres of PMS by MT American Categorical (Mom Vessel) and MT. St. Vanessa (Daughter Vessel) to Nigeria, whereas Nadabo Vitality Restricted solely imported 6,505,140.04 litres of PMS to Nigeria by MT Evridiki (Mom Vessel) and MT St Vanessa (Daughter Vessel).”
One other rely reads: “Nadabo Vitality Restricted and Abubakar Ali Peters, on or in regards to the twenty fifth day of October 2011 at Lagos, throughout the Lagos Judicial Division, with intent to defraud and with the intention to facilitate your acquiring cash by false pretence from the Federal Authorities of Nigeria beneath the Petroleum Assist Fund (PSF), solid a doc titled: Certificates of Marine Insurance coverage no. 0047851 and purported the Marine Insurance coverage certificates to have been issued by Staco Insurance coverage Plc to Nadabo Vitality Restricted.”
He pleaded “not responsible” to all of the counts.
Whereas the fifth prosecution witness, PW5, Abdulrasheed Bawa, the Govt Chairman of the EFCC, was nonetheless being cross-examined in the midst of the trial by the defence counsel, E.O. Isiramen, the defence had introduced an software dated July 5, 2022, urging the trial Choose to “disqualify or recuse your self on the grounds of existence of probability of bias”.
The prosecution, by its counsel, S.Ok. Atteh, had, additionally in September 2022, responded in a counter-affidavit .
Ruling on the appliance right now, Justice Balogun held that the allegation of “probability of bias” raised by the defence was a “mere conjecture”.
The trial choose, whereas noting that he took the “pains to learn the functions filed”, confused that “mine is to dispense justice to all events.”
The Choose held that “Let me say very unequivocally, since I began sitting as a Excessive Court docket choose in 2010, I’ve by no means had any trigger to go to anyone to present me any path by any individual or significantly any Honourable Chief Choose in respect of any case or particularly this matter.”
The trial choose additional famous that “the perceived judicial bias may be very unfounded”.
Whereas putting out the appliance, Justice Balogun dominated that “This court docket shall proceed to listen to this matter.”
The case was adjourned until July 11, 2023 for continuation of trial…..CONTINUE READING