Former Abia Governor Kalu, Others To Be Arraigned On May 16

Justice Anwuri Chikere of the Federal High Court, Abuja has fixed May 16 for arraignment of former Abia State governor, Orji Uzoh Kalu, ex-Director of Finance in the State House, Udeh Jones Udeogu, and Kalu’s company, Slok Nigeria Limited on a 112 amended charge brought against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The defendants are accused of diverting the Abia State’s funds estimated at about N5.6billion while Kalu and Udeogu were in office between 1999 and 2007. They had earlier been arraigned on a similar charge before Justice Adamu Bello (now retired from the Federal High Court’s bench), seven years ago.

Kalu, Slok and Udeogu were first arraigned on July 27, 2007 on a 96-count charge. The EFCC, on February 11, 2008 amended the charge, raising it to 112 counts. The defendants challenged the competence of the charge up to the Supreme, losing in every court. They also lost at the Supreme Court which, in a judgment on March 18 this year, dismissed their appeal and ordered them to submit themselves for trial.

“This matter was slated for mention today. On March 18, 2016, the Supreme Court dismissed the appeals by the defendants,” Prosecution lawyer, Oluwaleke Atolagbe said, handing a copy of the Supreme Court judgment to Justice Chikere.


“I will urge my lord to adjourn the case to afford the prosecution some time to take some steps. We will need about two weeks. We seek an adjournment for the defendants to take their plea,” he said.


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