Jumoke, Others Released From EFCC Custody

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The former Capital Territory (FCT), Minister Oloye Jumoke Akinjide and others who were detained in the custody of the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) over the alleged N650million 2015 campaign fund  regained their freedom on Thursday.

Oloye Akinjide was freed by a Federal High Court sitting in Ibadan on the ground of self recognition.

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Other two defendants in the case bordering on money laundering , Senator Ayo Ademola Adeseun and Chief Mrs Olarenwaju Otiti were also granted bail with conditions , which the court said they must meet  before the 5pm or remained in the custody of the EFCC .

The three accused persons were facing a twenty four count charge in the charge number FHC/IB/26c/2017 before the Federal High Court .
The fourth accused person, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke , former Minister of Petroleum under the administration of Good luck Jonathan is now at large.

One of the twenty four count charge reads” that you , Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke (still at large) , Oloye Jumoke Akinjide, Senator AYO Ademola Adeseun and Chief Olarenwaju Otiti on or about the 26th day of March, 2015 in Nigeria within the jurisdiction of this honourable court directly took possession of the sum of N650million which sum you reasonably ought to have known forms part of the proceeds of an unlawful act, and you hereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15 (2) (d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amended) Act , 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) and 4 of the same Act .

At the resumed hearing, Counsel to Oloye Jumoke Akinjide , Chief Richard Ogunwole (SAN) moved an application of urgency dated 23 June, 2017, seeking bail on self recognition on the grounds that the defendant has no criminal record .

He told the court that the first defendant ( Oloye Akinjide) is a renowned legal practitioner who has contributed to the development of legal profession, while praying the court to grant her bail.

Ogunwole SAN said ” As at the time she was invited to appear before the court she was on a medical trip to Germany and the medical report before the court showed that she actually went for medical treatment . She is a philanthropist per excellence and she has contributed to legal development in this country. And since there is no counter affidavit , she has promised to comply with the terms of the court. She has no  criminal background except laurels . There is a guarantee that she will never jump bail.”

Counsel to Senator Ayo Ademola Adeseun  , Mr Ola Adeosun pleaded with the court to grant to the accused person pending the determination of the case in most liberal terms .

Adeosun averred that Senator Adeseun is a distinguished politician, former chairman of local government, and a senator of the federal republic with no criminal background.

However, Counsel to the EFCC , Mr Idris Mohammed drew the attention of the court to the alleged antics of Senator Adeseun to frustrate his arraignment and trial  and how he jumped the administrative bail granted him by the EFCC.

Though, he told the court that he was not opposing the bail application but wanted the information passed to the court .

The EFCC counsel gave reason why he did not oppose the bail application ” the reason why I was not opposing the bail application was the fact that I at the last adjourned date you will recall that I told the honourable court that the EFCC agreed to the term of settlement with the first and third defendants in respect of what is before the court. What is before the court is a charge in respect of money laundering which us an offence under the money laundry prohibition Act as amended 2012 . So, based on that we filed a charge . Now, the subject matter in the charge is N650million . Now we are at the stage of settlement with them. So, taking them to prison will seriously jeopardize that settlement and that is why we refused to oppose  an application in keeping them in EFCC custody so that we continue the settlement .”

Rolling on the bail applications, the presiding Judge, Justice Joyce Abdul-Malik granted bail to the accused persons on condition.

While Oloye Jumoke Akinjide was granted bail on the ground of self recognition, Senator Adeseun and Mrs Olarenwaju Otiti were granted bail in the sum of N100million each with a surety who must be a director in the civil service  with landed property within the jurisdiction of the court . They must also deposit their international passport with the court.

The case was adjourned till 12 September, 2017 for commencement of trial in the event that the parties were unable to settle with the EFCC on the plea bargain agreement.

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Raji Adebayo, Ibadan
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