Ben-Chuks Nwosu, Counsel to former Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) National Publicity Secretary, Olisa Metuh, has frowned at a statement credited to the chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Musa Abubakar in which he accused Metuh’s legal team of playing technicalities in his ongoing corruption trial.
The lawyer wondered why such a comment could me made on a case that was pending before a court of competent jurisdiction.
“Our attention has been drawn to a recent statement credited to the Chairman of ICPC) Musa Abubakar, in which he singled out the case of our client, Chief Olisa Metuh, and claimed that we have been applying technicalities to delay the case.
“This statement made at a public event regarding a matter that is sudjudice is not only in bad taste; it is in total breach of a fundamental principle of law accepted in every civilised society,” Nwosu said, adding that the ICPC boss has never attended the trial of Metuh.
“It is instructive to note that Dr. Abubakar who had never attended the trial of Chief Metuh knew exactly the month prosecution closed its case. The case is not prosecuted by his ICPC but the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), yet he has in-depth knowledge of what goes on in Chief Metuh’s matter because ICPC and EFCC are in unison that a conviction must occur. This validates Chief Metuh’s outcry at the conspiracy against him by the powers that be,” he added.
According to Nwosu in a statement, “The case of Metuh has progressed faster than any other trial that commenced at the same time with it,” adding that “The Prosecution has amended its charges twice, thereby causing delay on its own.”
He continued: “The accusation that interlocutory appeals have been employed to delay the trail is unfounded. The trial judge in Metuh’s case in his ruling on Metuh’s application for leave to travel for medical reasons delivered on the 19th of April 2018 actually blamed Chief Metuh for not appealing his interlocutory decisions.
“The Court of Appeal in its judgment on Appeal No: CA/A/159C/2017, between Olisa Metuh vs Federal Republic of Nigeria & Anor, delivered on 29th of September, 2017, held that Metuh, contrary to the trial court’s finding, has not delayed his trial. This decision is subsisting.”