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Court fixes Oct. 6 for report in suit against Anambra varsity professor

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A Federal High Court, Abuja, on Wednesday, adjourned a suit filed against Prof. Obiajulu Obikeze and four others until Oct. 6 for report on the takeover of the matter by the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF).

Justice Inyang Ekwo fixed the date following a complaint by counsel for the AGF, Joe Agi, SAN, that he was yet to get the file in respect of the matter.

Our correspondent reports that Prof. Obikeze, Dr Raymond Ofor, Chief Israel Ezue, Sir Amobi Nwafor and Okafor Bethram IK, who are 1st to 5th defendants respectively, are being prosecuted over allegations bordering on forgery of chieftaincy documents.

The the Federal Republic of Nigeria, through the Inspector-General of Police, was the earlier complainant before the AGF took over the suit.

Agi had, on June 10, informed that he had been authorised by the AGF to take over the matter from the police and asked for an adjournment to enable him study the case.

Justice Ekwo then fixed today to enable the AGF chamber review the suit and report back to the court.

Upon resumed hearing, Agi also informed the court that though the matter was slated for report, pursuant to the fiat giving to him, he was still pursuing the case file.

He said he was in the process of getting the file.

The lawyer then applied for another date to enable him get the file.

The defence counsel, Kelvin Nwufo, SAN, did not oppose the application.

However, the senior lawyer said he had a preliminary objection challenging the jurisdiction of the court on the matter.

The judge consequently adjourned the matter until Oct. 6 for report.

Obikeze, who works with the Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, formerly known as Anambra State University Igbariam in Anambra, was arraigned on Feb. 22 alongside others on 11 counts.

Others, who include Dr Offor is current President-General of Awa Community in Orumba North LGA and a retired director with Anambra Ministry of Education; Chief Ezue, a tyre merchant in the northern states of the country; Sir Nwafor, an architect by training and Mr Bethram, a retired headmaster at a primary school in Agulu in Aniocha LGA of the state.

Our correspondent reports that in the charge marked: FHC/ABJ/CR/184/2021 dated and filed on July 6, 2021, by Odu, the defendants were alleged to have committed the offence around Jan.15, 2019, at Awa, Orumba North Local Government Area of Anambra.

In count one, the five defendants, and others now at large, were alleged to have conspired to commit forgery offence contrary to Section 3(6) and punishable under Section 1(2) (c) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, Cap M17 Laws of Nigeria, 2010.

While count two accused them of uttering forged documents, count three accused them of making “a forged letter to the Special Adviser to the Governor of Anambra on Chieftaincy and Towns Union Matters.

The document is titled, “Submission of Awa Chieftaincy Constitution,” knowing it to be false, with intent that it may be acted upon as genuine at the Government House, Awka, Anambra State.”

vanguard (nigeria)

Taiye Agbaje

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