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Subsidy fraud: EFCC accuses oil marketer of stalling trial

05 February 2014, 16:29

Ikeja - The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Wednesday accused an oil marketer, Oluwaseun Ogunbambo, of using delay tactics to stall the commencement of his trial.

The EFCC made the allegation through a counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, after Ogunbambo failed to appear before Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo of an Ikeja High Court.

The News Agency of Nigerian (NAN) reports that Ogunbambo and another oil marketer, Habila Theck, are being prosecuted for an alleged N979.6 million fuel subsidy scam.

They were arraigned alongside their firm -- Fargo Energy Ltd -- on July 31, 2012.

During Wednesday's proceedings, Ogunbambo's counsel, Mobolaji Akintunde, told the court that his client had sustained a spinal cord injury after falling from a bathtub.

He said Ogunbambo was presently receiving treatment at the Nigerian Army Reference Hospital in Yaba, Lagos.

He presented a medical report signed by one Retired Brig.-Gen. J.A. Aremu to back his claim and asked the court for an adjournment.

Responding, Oyedepo urged the court to reject the document, arguing that it was a ploy by Ogunbambo to further stall the trial.

He said: "My Lord, this document is intended to scuttle this trial.

"The disposition of the first defendant (Ogunbambo) in this case is becoming a dangerous precedent.

"They are indirectly seeking a stay of this proceeding."

Oyedepo said the medical report was not properly signed and did not disclose the date Ogunbambo was admitted at the hospital for treatment.

Onigbanjo, however, directed the EFCC to verify the authenticity of the medical report and whether Ogunbambo was being treated at the facility.

He adjourned the case to February 10 for further hearing.



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