By Michael Ojo
A Federal High Court in Lagos has fixed June 2 2020 to hear the motion on notice seeking the release from prison of a former Abia State governor, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu.
The motion will be heard by Justice Mohammed Liman.
Orji is serving a 12-year jail term at the Correctional Service Centre in Kuje, Abuja for looting N7.65billion belonging to Abia State.
The former governor has hired a 12-man team of lawyers, including six Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SAN)s, to prosecute his freedom bid.
He filed the motion on May 12 asking the court to nullify his conviction.
Justice Mohammed Idris of the Federal High Court, last December 5, convicted Kalu and a former Director of Finance in the Abia State Government House, Ude Jones Udeogu of the offence. While Dr Kali was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment, Udeogu bagged 10 years.
Following Udeogu’s appeal, the Supreme Court on May 8, 2020 held that the fiat issued to Justice Idris to conclude the case after he had been elevated to the Court of Appeal was “a nullity”.
The highest court set aside Idris’ verdict “as it pertains or relates to the appellant (Udeogu)”. It ordered Udeogu’s freedom and the retrial of his case.
Kalu is now contending that no legal basis exists for his continued incarceration following the Supreme Court’s judgment which declared his trial a nullity and freed Udeogu.