Ekiti - The Economic and Financial crimes Commission, EFCC, on Thursday November 22, 2012 re-arraigned a former governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Ayo Fayose over a N416, 138, 360.75 scam.
He was docked on a 27 count amended charge before Justice Adamu Hobon of the Federal High Court, Ado Ekiti. He pleaded not guilty to the charges which border on conversion of public funds for personal use and abuse of office while he held sway as governor of Ekiti state. Fayose’s re-arraignment was sequel to the transfer of Justice Emmanuel Obile who had been the trial judge.
EFCC’s counsel, Adebisi Adeniyi told the court that the accused was on bail and that he was not going to challenge that. Counsel to Fayose, Owoseni Ajayi had sought to stall the re-arraignment by opposing the appearance of Adeniyi as EFCC counsel on the grounds that the fiat to prosecute the case was given to Rotimi Jacobs and not Adeniyi. He also told the court that the fiat was not transferable and so the prosecution had no counsel in court.
However Adeniyi told the court to dismiss the submission of Ajayi on the grounds that the case was an EFCC case and that EFCC was statutorily empowered to prosecute its cases. ”This is a case that was initiated by EFCC. EFCC has power to initiate and prosecute. Having been briefed by the EFCC which is empowered by the Money Laundering Act, I do not need to come to court to show my letter of authorization” Adeniyi told the court.
Justice Hobon ruled that the defence’s counsel objection lacked merit and that Adeniyi could hold brief for the EFCC.