Oduah Casts Doubt On New EFCC Charges, Dismisses It As Spurious

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Sacked from Senate

News Investigators/ Former Aviation Minister, Stella Oduah has denied knowledge of any fresh criminal charges brought against her by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), dismissing it as spurious.

Mrs Oduah, a senator, said that apart from not being served with the purported charge, she was never subjected to any kind of investigation by the Nigeria Police Force or any other security agency in the country.

Her lawyer, James Ogwu Onoja who spoke at a press briefing maintained that Mrs Oduah was not invited to make any statement by any agency of government before the spurious charges were made.

Mr. Onoja claimed that his finding reveals that it could not yet ascertained whether the police or the EFCC was behind the charge.

According to him, the charge has no proof of evidence bearing Mrs Oduah’s statement as required by law and no single witness from NYSC was listed.

Besides, Mr. Onoja claimed that Ochogwu Ogbe and Ibrahim Mohammed, the two police lawyers responsible for the filing of the charges did so without affixing their lawyer-practising seals while the address where the purported charge emanated indicated EFCC’s office at number 1, Court Road, Benin City, Edo State.

He further explained that EFCC does not have the powers to prosecute any offence under the Penal Code, adding that the charge does not allege any offence under the EFCC’s Act but Criminal Code.

He asserted that his team had been to EFCC’s headquarters for investigation on the faceless charges and that the EFCC denied knowledge of the charge.

“The spurious allegations against our client of not participating in NYSC has been dismissed by the Supreme Court in her favour,” he said.

He added that the fresh charge against his client is a violation of the Code of Conduct for prosecutors as issued by the Federal Ministry of Justice and punishable under Article 7, part B of the Code.

The senior lawyer thanked Justice James Omotosho for ordering the immediate arrest of the lawyer that issued the charge and appear in court for prosecution.

He noted that the action of the judge is a confirmation that the court was not comfortable with all anomalies contained in the face of the charge.

He said a petition would be written to the Inspector General of Police for investigation and to call to order those bringing images of the police into disrepute while another petition would be forwarded to EFCC to investigate impersonation and abuse of its prosecutorial powers.

Similarly, Mr. Onoja vowed to report the matter of filing documents contrary to practice direction on fixing of seals of legal practitioners to the Chief Registrar of the Federal High Court, adding that, upon identifying the lawyers involved, they would be dragged before the Legal Practitioners Disciplinary Committee in addition to facing court action for malicious prosecution of Mrs Oduah.

“This is a new political dispensation which has promised adherence to the rule of law and accountability, we need a breath of fresh air”, the senior lawyer said.

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