The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has vowed to begin a fresh and immediate trial of former Governor of Abia State, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu after a Supreme Court voided his conviction for “N7. 65 billion” fraud.
Okay.ng recalls that the apex court in a unanimous decision by a seven-man panel of Justices led by Justice Amina Augie, held on Friday that the Federal High Court in Lagos acted without jurisdiction when it convicted Kalu, his firm, Slok Nigeria Limited and former Director of Finance in Abia State, Jones Udeogu.
However, the EFCC in a statement issued on Friday said “the apex court as quite unfortunate. It is a technical ambush against the trial of the former governor.”
The statement reads: “The attention of the Economic And Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has been drawn to the judgment of the Supreme Court nullifying the trial of a former governor of Abia State, Orji Kalu, his firm, Slok Nigeria Limited and Jones Udeogu, a former Director of Finance and Account of Abia State Government and ordering their fresh trial at the lower court.
“The apex court based its verdict on the grounds that Justice Mohammed Idris, who convicted Kalu and others had been elevated to the Court of Appeal before the judgment and returned to the lower court to deliver the judgment which it considered as illegal.
“The EFCC considers the judgment of the apex court as quite unfortunate. It is a technical ambush against the trial of the former governor. The Commission is prepared for a fresh and immediate trial of the case because its evidences against Kalu and others are overwhelming. The corruption charges against Kalu still subsist because the Supreme Court did not acquit him of them.
“The entire prosecutorial machinery of the EFCC would be launched in a fresh trial where justice is bound to be served in due course.”