By Olalekan Awojodu
After spending four days at the Kuje Correctional facility, the Senator representing Borno South in the National assembly, Senator Ali Ndume’s appeal filed for bail application has been slated for hearing Thursday by Justice Okon Abang.
This medium recalls that after failing to produce the ex-Pension boss, Abdulrasheed Maina as directed by the court.
The embattled lawmaker was Monday whisked to the Kuje prison by a team of Prison officials after the court ordered that he be remanded.
At the resumed hearing, Abang said his attention was drawn to Ndume’s application around 8:58 am, saying he promptly directed the court Clerk to fix the application for hearing on Thursday.
Although Ndume lawyer was not in court, counsel to the EFCC, Mr Mohammed Abubakar confirmed that he was served with both the bail application and hearing notice.
Recall that Ndume had challenged his detention in prison custody in a 12 grounds of appeal he lodged through his lawyer, Mr. Marcel Oru.
The lawmaker who insisted that he was denied an opportunity to argue his case alleged that he denied fair hearing.
In a related development, a lawyer Mr. Adeola Adedipe who was engaged by a former chairman of the defunct Pension Reform Task Team Abulrasheed Maina has applied to be removed from the money laundering case.
Adedipe who is representing Maina’s company Common Input Property and Investment Ltd told the court that he has filed a notice to withdraw from further representing the company, saying he has not been paid by his client.
Although, the Judge was quick to claim that the notice filed by the lawyer was not in the court’s file.
Adedipe has however apologized for being absent at proceedings and recent adjournments.
But at the trial on Monday, Justice Abang had criticized Maina’s legal team represented by Francis Oronsaye for continuing to appear for and receive briefings from the fleeing defendant from his hiding place.
He alleged that the legal team was only pretending not to know Maina’s whereabouts.
The development according to Abang showed that the defence lawyers had abandoned proceedings without formally withdrawing from the case.
But in his ruling, Justice Abang said Adedipe’s application could not be granted because the said application had yet to arrive the court’s file from the registry where it was filed.
Both Maina’s and his son’s cases has since been adjourned till December 4.
Maina’s son, Faisal, who is also being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in a separate money laundering case before the same court is also said to have jumped bail.
The judge has equally ordered a member of the House of Representatives representing the Kaura-Namoda Federal Constituency of Zamfara State, Sani Umar Dangaladima, to return to court on December 4.
The Judge challenge Dangaladima who stood surety for Faisal to show cause why he should not be made to forfeit a N60m bail bond at stake or imprisoned for his inability to produce the fleeing defendant.
Ruling, the judge said the lawmaker showed “tremendous respect” for the court by coming to court before he was served the summons.