The Federal High Court in Kaduna has set March 29, 2019, to rule on an application filed by Rabiu Aliko Lawal.
He had requested for the transfer of the fraud case instituted against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to the State High Court.
Four other persons were charged – The EFCC brought up charges against Lawal and four others — Bashir Abdullahi Mohammed, Oche Ogenyi, Adefila Taofile Kayode and Mmadu Mathew Onyekachi — accusing them of defrauding Polaris Bank Limited (formerly Skye Bank Plc) of N466 million.
Lawal’s lawyer pushed his case – In defence of his request, Lawal’s counsel, M.K. Aondoakaa, SAN, on March 19, 2019, moved the application. He argued that the charges were similar to the one before Justice Mohammed Tukur of a Kaduna State High Court, which according to him, has the jurisdiction to adjudicate the case.
“The State High Court has the jurisdiction to hear money laundering matters, and there is another charge pending at a State High Court.”
The appeal was kicked against – But the appeal was opposed by the Prosecuting Counsel, J. Saidi, who argued that cases are tried based on the jurisdiction of the court as the law provides and not based on the convenience of the parties involved. He believes that “what the defendants seek is their convenience.”
The trial judge thereafter, adjourned the case till March 29, 2019 to rule on the application.