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Benue court upholds defence man's corruption charge

18 July 2014, 08:32Augustine Osayande

Abuja - The Court of Appeal sitting in Makurdi, Benue State, has upheld the seven year sentence of a man who received bribes to help a pair secure employment into the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) .

Ayuba Bakkat, sentenced in 2012, was convicted for collecting bribes totaling N205 000 from Philip Adejoh and Obinna Ugwueze.

The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) arraigned the culprit on a three-count charge of corruption punishable under Section 10(9) (ii) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.

His counsel, Osakwe Morris, had sought the quashing of the judgment by the appellate court on the grounds that the lower court had no jurisdiction and that the Act 2000 upon which the accused was tried was null and void.

In the lead judgment delivered by Justice Oyebisi F Omoleye, the appellant court cited several cases where the ICPC Act 2000 had been used to adjudicate cases claiming that the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Act 2000 remained valid.

“I am not aware of any decisions of either the Supreme Court or this Court declaring the Act 2000 invalid. This is the reason, I am at one with the submissions of the learned counsel for the respondent that, the Act of 2000 is subsisting and therefore the appellant was validly tried, convicted and sentenced under it.”

Justice Omoleye said, “I therefore cannot comprehend in whatsoever way those two issues touch on the meat and substance of the instant appeal. I have no hesitation in discountenancing the said submissions. It is quite obvious that issue no1 does not avail for the appellant. I have resolved it against him.”

-CAJ News


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