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Absence of prosecutor stalls trial of ex-NIMASA DG

20 January 2014, 20:56

Lagos - The absence of the prosecution on Monday stalled the trial of Raymond Omatseye, a former Director-General, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), charged with contract scam.

When the case was mentioned, the Defence Counsel, Olusina Sofola (SAN), informed the court of the absence of the prosecutor, Godwin Obla (SAN), whom he said was indisposed.

He, therefore, prayed the court for a short adjournment to give the prosecutor time to get well enough to attend court trials.

Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia adjourned the case till February 5, for continuation of the trial.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Omatseye is being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on an amended 27-count charge of alleged contract scam.

He was re-arraigned on January 21, 2013, and had pleaded not guilty to the charge and was admitted to bail.

At the last adjourned date on December 3, 2013, the prosecution had called its second witness, a former Director of Procurement, NIMASA, who testified that Omatseye never executed any contract for the supply of generator sets.

NAN recalls that In the charge, the accused was said to have been involved in contract splitting and bid rigging, estimated at over N1.5 billion.

The offences contravene Sections 14(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2004, and Sections 58(4) (d) of the Public Procurement Act, 2007.

-  NAN

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