City Voice Newspaper Just another WordPress site Mon, 12 Nov 2018 18:17:40 +0000 en-US hourly 1 BREAKING: Nasiru Ado Bayero is new chairman, as Teleology appoints new Board for 9mobile Mon, 12 Nov 2018 18:12:20 +0000 Teleology on Monday announced the constitution of a new Board of Directors for Nigeria’s multi-award-winning telecommunication company, 9mobile, following the successful completion of the tenure of the former Board appointed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and in fulfillment of the consequential transfer of final ownership to the new investors, Teleology Nigeria Limited.

The CBN, in collaboration with the NCC, had in July 2017 appointed a Board of Directors chaired by Dr. Joseph Nnanna, the Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, to oversee the affairs of the company pending the completion of regulatory due diligence of the bid documents submitted by Teleology and sixteen others for its acquisition. The bid process was superintended by Barclays Africa. But with the emergence of the Board, the long process for the acquisition of 9mobile has reached a definitive end marking the beginning of a new era for the telecommunication company.

Teleology said the composition of the new Board of Directors is another significant milestone, and this follows the issuance of final approval of no objection by the Board of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to the effect that the technical and financial bids Teleology submitted for 9mobile met and satisfied all the regulatory requirements.

‘’This is indeed the dawn of a new era in the evolution of the 9mobile brand in the Nigerian market,’’ the board said.

‘’The new Board of Directors are:

  1. Nasiru Ado Bayero (Chairman)
  2. Asega Aliga (Non Executive Director)
  3. Adrian Wood (Non Executive Director)
  4. Mohammed Edewor (Non Executive Director)
  5. Winston Ndubueze Udeh (Non Executive Director)
  6. Abdulrahman Ado (Executive Director)
  7. Stephane Beuvelet (Acting Managing Director)

‘’We thank all out-going members of the Board for helping to shepherd 9mobile through the critical transition phase it has passed through since July 2017 and wish them the very best in their future assignments.

Ado Bayero welcomes the appointment stating, “as we begin this new epochal phase, we wish to thank all the employees who built this viable business. Our debt of gratitude also goes to our subscribers even as we assure them to get ready for real best-in-class additional value for their relationship with the 9mobile brand. Without you, there could not have been a 9mobile business for us to invest in today. We will justify your confidence in our brand by making significant investments that will improve the value you get for using 9mobile.”

Plot to embarrass Atiku, plant foreign currencies on his aircraft failed – former APC spokesperson Mon, 12 Nov 2018 17:56:36 +0000 Former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Comrade Timi Frank, has sensationally claimed that a plot to embarrass the People Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, on arrival early hours on Sunday from Dubai was a failure.

Atiku, who returned to Nigeria around 1am on Sunday morning from his vacation in Dubai was thoroughly searched by a Special Squad of security men for some hours with recording gadgets on them and in and around Atiku’s aircraft.

According to Frank, the plan to drop bags of foreign currencies and other implicating things in Atiku’s aircraft on his arrival was also unsuccessful.

“Nothing was found on him or in his aircraft,” he said.

In a statement he signed to raise an alarm on the issue, Frank said the special squad of security men who carried out the search confessed that they were directed by the presidency to embarrass the former Vice President.

The squad, Frank claimed, were armed with recording gadgets in and out of Atiku’s aircraft “to see if he returned to the country with foreign currencies or any other implicating materials.”

The former APC spokesman said the security men and the presidency were disappointed when nothing implicating could not be foundd on either Atiku or his aircraft.

While condemning what he tagged President Muhammadu Buhari’s move to desperately nail the PDP presidential candidate, Frank said if the former President Goodluck Jonathan was so harsh on President Buhari in 2015, he couldn’t have occupied the office today.

Frank said since Atiku Abubakar left office as Vice President for eight years, “this is the first time out of desperation to nail him that he has been searched embarrassingly.”

He, however warned  president Buhari to desist from his act of desperation against the PDP presidential candidate.

“Due to information at our disposal, I have been saying it that the PDP presidential candidate is not save under this administration because the Buhari’s administration is deploying all manners of devilish strategies to nail all the opposition leaders especially, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.

“We are using this medium to inform the international community to also take note of how Buhari administration is intimidating the opposition presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, who has served Nigeria as Vice President for eight years.”

Diamond Bank, Access Bank write SEC to dispel rumour of business merger Mon, 12 Nov 2018 17:35:01 +0000 Diamond Bank Plc and Access Bank Plc have notified the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) and the general public that both banks are not in any merger or acquisition talks as being circulated in some media.

The banks, in separate statements to the exchange on Monday, denied the rumours that they were engaged in merger and acquisition talks.

Mr Uzoma Uja, Diamond Bank’s Company Secretary, said it was not in discussion with any financial institution at the moment on any form of merger or acquisition.

Uja said that the attention of Diamond Bank had been drawn to the rumour in the media stating that the bank was purportedly in discussion with Access Bank to acquire the bank.

“We wish to state categorically that the bank is not in discussion with any financial institution at the moment on any form of merger or acquisition.

“We trust that the above clarifies the position of the bank with regards to the rumour on the various media platforms,” Uja said.

Also, Mr Sunday Ekwuochi, Company Secretary, Access Bank, said the bank had not entered into any such discussion with Diamond Bank or any other institution.

“As a publicly quoted company built on best practice, the bank is fully cognisant of its disclosure obligations in respect of any such corporate action and will always discharge its obligations in the most professional manner.

“Consequently, any statement regarding any such corporate action that is not issued by the bank should be disregarded,” Ekwuochi said.

Interest of the people will be best served with local council autonomy, says Obasanjo Mon, 12 Nov 2018 17:24:12 +0000 By Michael Adesanya/Abeokuta

Former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo on Monday insisted that the interest of the people would be well served if there is autonomy for local governments.

He disclosed that State governments have made some local councils incapacitated by withholding funds meant for them, lamenting that many councils could no longer perform their statutory functions.

The former President spoke while playing host to Friends of Democracy, at his residence inside Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL), Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta.

He said the state executives doing such should be described as the enemy of the people, hence they must be treated as such.

The group sought the former President’s support for the LG Autonomy Bill which had been passed by National Assembly but still requires the nod of not less than 24 State Houses of Assembly.

Obasanjo noted that the LG Reforms carried out in 1976 was meant to give LG as third tier of government and not an appendage.

He expressed regret that state governments, which are autonomous, are opposed to the agitation of granting autonomy to be councils in Nigeria.

The former President asked the leadership of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and the Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) to lead the demand for LG autonomy in the interest of the people at the grassroots.

His words “When in 1976, we brought in Local Government Reforms, it was meant to be third tier of the government and not meant to be subjected to whims and caprices of any other government. Just the same way that the state government is autonomous from the Federal Government.

“Local Government is meant to be autonomous from the State Government.

“But from what we know, by design, most states have incapacitated the Local Government. They have virtually stolen the Local Governments’ money in what they called Joint Account. They were to contribute 10 percent but they never contributed anything.

“So, what we have across the country are Local Government Areas that have functions, but cannot perform the functions. They have staff but most of them cannot pay the staff, and we keep getting excuses upon excuses.

“And I see no reason if the Federal Government allows the states to enjoy their autonomy except in the case of state of emergency.

“The Bill passed by the National Assembly which requires 24 State Houses of Assembly and like I am told only 9 States have signed it.

“I am proud of those states because they are what you will call progressive states that really believe in democracy.

“My own state (Ogun) is one of them. I will say kudos to Ogun State. In the South-South, only Bayelsa and Cross River States have signed it. Kudos to those two states. In the North-East, it’s only Bauchi. In the North-West, it’s only Sokoto. In the North-Central, we have four states, Kwara, Niger, Plateau and Benue. I will say kudos to the executives and the legislature of those states.

“But we must say those state executives and the legislatures that have prevented the bill from being passed, they must be taken as the enemy of the people and they should be treated as such. Because if you enjoy autonomy from the Federal Government why don’t you want Local Government to enjoy autonomy?

“Again, I will say leadership of NLC and NULGE who have always fought for the interest of the people should know that the interest of the people at the local government will be Best served if the LG has autonomy which is meant that they should have.”

Abuja women journalists host Oby Ezekwesili, as she promises to govern for all Mon, 12 Nov 2018 16:55:27 +0000 Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, NAWOJ FCT Chapter, led by Comrade Stella Okoh Esene, this weekend hosted Dr Obiageli Ezekwesili, the presidential candidate of the the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria, ACPN  at its November Congress.

Dr Ezekwesili, in her lecture, tasked female journalists in Nigeria not to allow themselves to be reduced to just covering women, children and soft sell issues but to see themselves as equal partners with their male counterparts.

The Allied Congress Party of Nigeria Presidential flag said when she emerges as the first female President Federal Republic of Nigeria, she would govern and not rule Nigerians and the gender inequality will crash. She promised to retire the men out of rulership, saying her passion is human development.

She asserted that you won’t find the Legal or Accountancy profession in the Nigerian constitution, but you will find the Media.

She said: ‘’You are recognised globally in any democracy as the conveyors of accountability and oversight in the society. So you have such a responsibility your mandate is huge. Nobody takes you for granted in other societies. That’s why when you see some fierce looking female journalists like in America where i lived schooled, studied and worked you conform because when they get you they got you. Especially if you are female.

‘’I want to thank you for inviting me to your November congress as i looked around where you are having this meeting NUJ ABUJA Council secretariat. I said trust women it does not matter where you are as long as they are motivated on an issue they will get it done. One has a baby crying from the harsh weather but that’s a woman for you.

‘’That intelligence we have about society we just want to get things done. I want to praise you all. I celebrate your tenacity in gathering to hold this meeting in an uncompleted building. I am praying to God that you would be drivers of completing your structure. This is the structure some money was given for. It’s unfortunate I do remember this story.

‘’Let me say to you that the issue that matters to women in the media are also issues that matter to all citizens. Because women in are seen as only covering women and children issues.

‘’But I tell you that you are journalists of the female gender. Once they box you into that pidgin hole naturally what they have done is to select your part in your profession. You must resist it. We must avoid being boxed in. I am a champion for the women not to be pigeon holed. One of the things we identified as a barrier to women’s development is the pigeon hole.’’

According to Dr Ezekwesili, the future is female. The present has to be female. There was a time the world acted as if it was a male society, but male dominated societies lost their cohesion.

‘’Countries later understood and started managing the gender diversities. While still serving as the Vice President at the World Bank in 2010 we conducted a research in the concept of achieving gender equality. We discovered that in Japan due to gender inequality it lost 100% of GDP. On the other hand China overtook Japan because there was more women participation. Where there was gender equality, there was less poor governance because more women were involved.

‘’I am fed up of being told a child can’t get treated until money is dropped. Fed up seeing selfish leadership who look at leadership as opportunity for their belle. Fed up of the failures of Nigeria. Fed up that rather than an army growing, we are dropping middle class into poverty. Fed up of dismal economic performance.’

‘’I represent credible alternative, competence, character and capacity. By my track record problems were solved i figured out solutions to problems using team spirit. We are running together. Mine is a vision for Nigerians. If you are fed up too then join me.’’

High point was presentation of two book written by a former CNN journalist of the year, Ibiba don Pedro to Ezekwesili.

How Cambridge University students shut down Shell Annual Lecture over Ogoni spills Mon, 12 Nov 2018 16:22:02 +0000 A group of Cambridge University student protesters from Zero Carbon movement recently disrupted an event discussing which had prominent figures such as Upstream Director for Shell, Andrew Brown, in attendance.

The Shell Annual Lecture at Emmanuel College was to be on “the role that traditional oil and gas companies could play in the Energy Transition.”

The group unfurled banners and chanted slogans until university staff relocated the event after 12 or so minutes.

The Zero Carbon movement released a statement on the disruption, thus:

‘’Royal Dutch Shell is a colonial corporation of criminals. It is responsible for the desolation of the Niger delta and the violence, suffering, and poverty of the people who live there. With over 3000 oil spills a year in Ogoniland, more than 85% of the population has been left in abject poverty, denied their right to clean water, food and self-determination, as a result of Shell’s rapacious pillaging of their homeland, and complicity in the corruption of their government. In the face of resistance from the Ogoni people, Shell stands accused of ‘complicity in murder, rape and torture’ and complicity with the Nigerian government when they hanged the Ogoni leaders in 1995. Shell is currently embroiled in the biggest bribery and corruption scandal of an oil company in history, facing trial in Milan over an alleged $1.2 billion in bribes. Last year at the same event, Andrew Brown stated that he was “fundamentally proud” of Shell’s record in Nigeria.

‘’Andrew Brown squirmed last night to defend the indefensible. He claimed that because Shell no longer operate in the Ogoniland, their crimes could be forgotten. Ignoring the fact that Shell’s subsidiaries still operate in Nigeria, the oil will not be cleaned up for decades, and in the meantime the lives and livelihoods of thousands have been ruined. He claimed Shell are investing heavily in renewables. Yet when pressed was forced to admit Shell’s renewable investment was under 10% (it is between 4 and 8%) of their total expenditure. This is a disgracefully low figure in the face of climate breakdown that shows Shell have no place in the energy transition.

‘’How many more spills until Shell is put to justice? How much more suffering until Shell is driven out? How much more corruption before Shell is made to pay for its crimes? We must be clear that these crimes are no accident. Fossil fuel extraction is by its very nature colonial; stealing resources from the Global South to fund the capitalist power of wealthy industrialised nations. The climate crisis is fundamentally built on a system of oppression.

‘’No more. We undertook yesterday’s action in solidarity with the Niger Delta, the Ogoni people, and all who have had to suffer violence at the hands of Shell’s violent extraction. The only way we will achieve climate justice, and the only way we will tackle the climate crisis, is by fighting in solidarity with peoples across the world for total systemic change.

‘’Companies like Shell are running scared. Refusing us tickets despite the empty seats, placing security all over the event, offering pathetic excuses when questioned and swiftly evacuating the event in a mere 12 minutes to avoid more exposure; this is the behaviour of a company that knows its time is up. Together, this is a fight we will win.

‘’To Shell, we send this message: you have no place in our University. We don’t want the interest on your investments, we don’t want your research, we don’t want your oil-stained, blood-money funding. Get out of the delta, get out of Nigeria, get out of our University.
‘’Solidarity with the delta. Power to the Ogoni

Joshua Agbo, who applauded the action of the protesters, commented thus:

‘’After giving a lecture on “Capitalism and Environment” in the Department of Sociology, Cambridge University, with Dr. Thomas Jeffrey Miley, I was invited by one of the Zero Carbon activists to talk more on the Shell’s climate injustices in Ogoniland, Nigeria. Nicholas Hildyard, an environmental activist, and myself spoke on the atrocities of the Dutch-Anglo oil company (Shell) in Ogoniland – exposing the massive corruption going on between the company and the Nigerian Government. ‘’At the end of my talk, a white lady walked up to me to say: “I almost cried when you started talking about the deplorable conditions of the Ogoni people. The power of your language, the image painted of the Ogoni people can make stone shed tears. Your message was clear and moving”. I said, “Thank you”. ‘’To show that the message was clear to the audience, the Zero Carbon activists at the Cambridge University did what even the entire Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) cannot do. At about 00:22am yesterday, I lay in my bed as a result of severe back pains – then, I received a message from one of the large-minded and committed activists in the Zero Carbon House Movement, saying: “Heya Josh, I just thought I’d let you know that the action today was very successful. We shut down Shell’s event, and it was a high profile one too: with one of their foremost chief executives. After about ten minutes of chanting, they decided to clear the room. In good part, thanks to you, following your talk on “Shell’s climate injustices” and the group discussion we had afterwards, we could very much more posit this action in a de-colonial framework”. ‘’Receiving this message from him, my pains literally disappeared. I thank all the young men and women, who came out yesterday to protest against the Shell Executive Meeting, where the fate and exploitation of the “wretched of the earth” were to be decided. These activists are people who, probably, may have never been to Ogoniland before, but following the Gospel of international solidarity, they stood up for the Ogoni people. These activists represent the spirit of courage and deep humanity that knows not to only protest and resist – but to build. ‘’They fill me with pride, joy, and confidence because they always try to breathe some human sense into activism. Your action is a manifesto of profound hope, and may it be an inspiration to many – particularly, the Nigerian Labour Congress that cannot hold the Federal Government accountable, despite obvious reasons to do so.’’

Online voting now open for 9mobile Photography Competition Mon, 12 Nov 2018 15:59:35 +0000 In a bid to select the best of entries for its Photography competition while creating excitement amongst photography enthusiasts, award-winning telecommunication company, 9mobile, has opened its portal to enable interested Nigerians cast their votes online for the winner of the ‘Voters’ Choice’ category, of the competition’s 2018 edition.

The online public voting kicked off on Monday, November 5, and will run until Monday, November 19, 2018.

Prior to this public voting, photographs submitted during the call for entries which held from September 17 to October 31, were evaluated by an internal evaluation committee in line with the competition’s entry criteria. The qualifying entries made the “Top 100”.

The Top 100 images are now being displayed on the portal for a period of two weeks, for the public to vote their favourite images. The image with the highest votes will emerge as winner of a prize category of the photography competition, referred to as the ‘Voters’ Choice’ category.

Similarly, out of the Top 100, a three-member judging panel will also select the “Top Three” images, and they will be categorised as the first, second and third prize winners respectively. The judges comprise creative photographer, Kola Oshalusi; documentary photographer, Bernard Kalu; and award-winning photo-journalist, Aisha Augie-Kuta.

Speaking on the milestone achieved by the 9mobile Photography Competition so far, Director of Brands and Experience, Elvis Ogiemwanye, expressed excitement at the impressive higher number of images that were received, and noted that the positive enthusiasm elicited by the competition was a testament that many Nigerians appreciate photography as a rewarding activity.

“The hundreds of entries received from all over the country made us truly excited. We are passionate about helping Nigerians to fulfil their dreams and develop their talents; and the 9mobile Photography Competition is one of such platforms that enable us deliver on this promise”, he said.

Ogiemwanye added that the public voting is part of the innovation to make Nigerians own the competition and to further demonstrate the premium the telco places on its customers and stakeholders. He also stated that those whose entries made the Top 100 had been sent an email notifying them of their feat, while a link to their entries had also been shared so they can share with family and friends.

The “Top 3” list will be announced on November 27, 2018, while the winner and the first and second runners-up respectively will be announced on December 6 this year.

The theme of this year’s competition is ‘9ja: My Grind, My Hustle’, in celebration of individuals that labour daily to make ends meet, those who appreciate the importance of hard work, and have a drive for success and fulfilment.

The 9mobile Photography Competition is a talent development initiative by the telco aimed to engage and empower budding photographers using the power of digital media.

In 2017, Oluwaseun Otitoola, won the 9mobile Photography Competition with his entry titled “Fragment of CMS Bookshop Building”, while Amanda Ihemebiri (The NestOil Tower) and Taiwo Omotosho, (Lines Side by Side) emerged first and second runners-up respectively.

Fashola delivers third year progress report of his ministry Mon, 12 Nov 2018 15:52:54 +0000 By Monday Ijeh

Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, on Monday said his ministry has delivered visible and qualitative achievements to Nigerians since his appointment in November, 2015.

Fashola said this on Monday in Abuja at a media briefing to give the third year progress report of the ministry under his watch.

He said the ministry had in a statement titled “Setting the Agenda for Delivering Change” in December 2015 set out what it inherited, plan to do and what Nigerians should expect from it.

According to him, as at May 2015, many contractors have stopped work because of payment and many fathers and wives employed by them have been laid off.

He said the possibility to return those who had lost their jobs back to work was the kind of change the ministry promised Nigerians.

Fashola said that the progress report on public sector works relating to roads and bridges had confirmed that the ministry had fulfilled its promise.

He said that the ministry had recovered the thousands of jobs that were lost as a result of an expansive infrastructure spending on works from N18.132 billion in 2015 to N394 billion in 2018.

“The outcome is that there is not one state in Nigeria today where the Federal Government is not executing at least one road project with construction workers engaged on the sites.

“Difficult or abandoned projects like the Second Niger Bridge, Lagos Ibadan Expressway and the Bodo-Bonny Bridge have been brought back to life.

“Sections of Ilorin-Jebba, Sokoto to Jeba, Sokoto-Ilela have been completed, while progress of work continues nationwide.

“Apart from recovered construction jobs and growth in construction sector of the economy, the feedback from road users is that the journey times are reducing on the completed roads,” he said.

According to him, we acknowledge that the work is not finished, but as long as we remain able to finance the projects, I have no doubt that it will get better.

He said that the ministry had extended its intervention on roads to universities to ensure that unattended internal roads were given attention.

The minister said that 14 Federal Universities would benefit from the first phase of the intervention under the 2017 budget adding that more would be accommodated in the 2018 budget.

1,801 killed, 50,212 displaced in recent Plateau attacks Mon, 12 Nov 2018 15:48:33 +0000 By Peter Amine

The Committee on Resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), set up by the Plateau Government, has said that 1,801 persons were killed in the recent attacks on the state.

AVM Bala Danbaba (retired), Chairman of the committee, while presenting its report to Gov. Simon Lalong on Monday in Jos, added that 50,212 persons were forcefully displaced from their ancestral homes.

Danbaba said that the committee identified 115 communities cutting across Jos North,  Jos South, Bassa,  Riyom,  Barkin Ladi and Bokkos Local Government Areas, that were affected by the crises.

He said that the committee, whose one month period was later increased to two months, received 55 memoranda and visited 27 camps where the IDPs were quartered.

“The only IDPs camp we did not visit was the one at Lere, in the Dorowa area of Barkin  Ladi Local Government. We could not go there because of security reasons.

“The committee also visited all the affected communities for an on-the-spot assessment,” he stated.

He said that the committee had recommended that the IDPs be returned to their ancestral homes, saying that the exercise should be carried out in four phases.

“The committee also emphasised the provision of adequate security in the affected areas,” he said, dding that the IDPs were willing and anxious to return to their homes, if security was guaranteed.

Danbaba suggested that a victim support programme be initiated to reduce their sufferings.

The committee also called for the establishment of temporary camps within the victims’ communities, for them to live in, while their houses were being reconstructed.

Lalong, who received the report, commended the committee for a carrying out a good job, and announced that the 7-man committee would be responsible for its implementation.

Lalong reaffirmed his administration’s commitment to securing lives and property, and condemned insinuations that the state and Federal Governments were doing nothing to end the crises.

“Things might be slow, but in the spirit of “slowly, but surely”, as well as patience, we have been able to make some phenomenal achievements in ensuring that peace returns and is sustained.

“As some of our strategic initiatives in engendering peace and security in the State, this administration attracted the establishment of the 205 Combat and Rescue Units in Kerang.

“We also attracted a Mobile Police Squadron in Shendam, as well as the recent approval to establish Mobile Police Barracks in Gashish District of BarkinLadi.

“All these are in addition to procurement and distribution of security vehicles, equipped with modern communication gadgets,” he stressed.

Lalong also said that he had approved the recruitment and training of neighbourhood watch personnel who had been attached to Operation Rainbow for community policing and intelligence gathering.

Court revokes Orji Kalu’s bail, orders him to submit self to EFCC Mon, 12 Nov 2018 15:39:10 +0000 By Sandra Umeh
Justice Mohammed Idris of a Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday revoked the bail of a former Governor of Abia, Orji Kalu, following his failure to appear in court for trial as scheduled.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is prosecuting Kalu together with his former Commissioner for Finance, Ude Udeogo and a Company, Slok Nigeria Ltd on charges of N7.2 billion fraud.

EFCC had on Oct. 31, 2016, preferred a 34-count charges, bordering on N3.2 billion fraud against the accused.

The charges were, however, subsequently amended to 39 counts.

They had each pleaded not guilty to the charges and were granted bails.

At the last adjourned date on Nov. 5, Kalu was also absent for his trial and defence counsel had informed the court that he was away for medical treatment in Germany.

Justice Idris, who is sitting on a fiat to conclude the trial, had then adjourned the case until Monday for continuation of trial and ordered that Kalu returns to the country within seven days from Nov. 5 to stand trial.

The court had said: “In the light of the entirety of this case, and in the interest of justice, I am prepared to grant the first defendant a final adjournment in respect of this matter.

On Monday, Idris, revoked Kalu’s bail, following his failure to appear in court for trial as scheduled.

The judge ordered that upon a return of Kalu from his alleged medical trip, he must submit himself to the EFCC, failing which an order will be made for his arrest.

“I am constrained to revoke the bail granted to the first defendant; the first defendant is, however, permitted to continue with his medical treatment abroad, unharrased by law enforcement agencies.

“Upon his return to the country, he must at the point of entry, surrender his international passport and other relevant travelling document to the EFCC; he shall submit himself to the EFCC within 24 hours of his return, failling which he shall be rearrested and detained by the EFCC.

“Let me state that there is no doubt that the first defendant is entitled to and has a right to life, he has a right to seek medical treatment within and outside the shores of Nigeria; this right is further guaranteed by the African Charter on Human and People’s Right.

“In enjoying this right, the first defendant has a duty to follow due process of law; in this case, the first defendant acted outside the purview of the law, and he is expected to be dealt with according to the law.

“This court is a court of equity, but he who seeks equity must do equity; I find no reason why I should depart from the law, this court is an equal dispenser of justice, ” the court held.

The court adjourned the case until Dec 3 .

In the charge, the accused were alleged to have committed the offences between August 2001 and October 2005.

Kalu was alleged to have utilised his company to retain in the account of a First Inland bank, now FCMB, the sum of N200 million.

The sum is alleged to have formed part of funds illegally derived from the coffers of the Abia State Government.

In one of the counts, his company (Slok Nig Ltd) and one Emeka Abone who is said to be at large, were also alleged to have retained in the company’s account the sum of N200 million, on behalf of the first accused.

In counts one to 10, the accused were alleged to have retained about N2.5 billion in different accounts, which funds were said to belong to the Abia State Government.

Cumulatively, in all the counts, the accused were alleged to have diverted over N7.2 billion from the Abia State government’s treasury during Kalu’s tenure as governor.

The offences were said to have contravened the provisions of Sections 15(6), 16, and 21 of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2005.

It also contravened the provisions of the Money Laundering Act of 1995 as amended by the amendment Act No. 9 of 2002 and Section 477 of the Criminal Code Act, Laws of the Federation, 1990.