The trial of a former Governor of Nasarawa state, Aliyu Akwe Doma, and a former Secretary to the state government, Timothy Anthony Anjide, before Justice Agatha A. Okeke of the Federal High Court, Lafia, Nasarawa, took a different dimension on Monday, April 20, 2015 as the defense counsel, Charles Edonsanwan, SAN, requested to subpoena the incumbent Secretary to the State Government.
Edonsanwan told the court that, it needed to subpoena the incumbent Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Dauda Egwa, to produce some documents, which he said would enable it properly cross-examine prosecution witness, Solomon Katsa, a former director of finance, office of the SSG.
According to a statement signed on Monday by the Head, Media and Publicity of the EFCC, Wilson Uwujaren, the defense counsel told the court that, the SSG had been served a subpoena over a year ago, and has refused to appear in court. He noted that he had no right to treat the court with contempt.
“We need him to produce some documents which will enable us cross-examine the witness, but so far we have not seen the SSG or a representative”, he said.
He urged the court to issue a bench warrant on the SSG and also order a committal.
Prosecution counsel, Kemi Pinheiro, SAN, however, told the court that, “whenever there was a subpoena all parties have to be served. He noted that 90 percent of the documents subpoenaed are already before the court and the service of subpoena does not stop the defence from cross-examination”.
He urged the defence to commence trial.
Justice Okeke adjourned the case to April 21, 2015 for cross examination and ordered hearing notices to be served on the Secretary to the state Government.
It will be recalled that, at the last sitting, a prosecution witness, Katsa told the court that, the purchase of a Toyota bus which had a payment voucher in favour of Ataya Motors came from the office of the Secretary to the State Government which raised an invoice. He, however, told the court that there was no memo to back up the payment voucher raised, neither was there retirement of any sort.
Katsa, who was the fifth prosecution witness, PW5, told the court that Anjide, the second accused person, who was the former Secretary to the State Government, was the recipient of the N496m (four hundred and ninety six million naira), which was released for the voters’ registration exercise in 2011.
Akwe-Doma, Anjide and Egwe are being prosecuted on a 10 count charge bordering on money laundering by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.