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23 INEC Workers Accused Of Receiving N350m Bribe From Wike Object To Trial

THE planned arraignment of 23 workers of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) charged with bribery and corruption has been put off.
The INEC officials are accused in a seven-count charge of allegedly receiving N360 million bribe from Governor Nyesom Wike in connection with the December 10, 2016 rerun legislative elections in River State
The arraignment has been postponed to April 7 in view of the objection raised by the INEC officials against their trial in Abuja.
The INEC officials are: Shittu Mohammed Lamido (Shettima), Henry Owokure, Peter Ewetade, Mrs. Mary Jummai Tunkoyo Pennap, Gwatana Jibril, Ivase Stephen and Abdullahi Ogabo.
Others are Gayus Hassan, Hussaini T. Yahaya, James Ogwuche, Karimu F. Aminu, Adedokun Najeem Ayotunde, Balogun Funmilayo and Adams O. Kadiri.
Also named in the charge are Akinwande R. Adesoji, Lukeman Olabimpe, Tiamiyu R. Arowolo, Akinwoye Amodu, Nwoha Yusuf, Patrick Anuke, Iro Abali, Nwosu G. Oluchi and Arukwe Chinelo.
The officials, who have all been on the bail granted them by the police, were brought to the Federal High Court, Abuja around 8.30am today in vehicles provided by the police.
But lawyers to the defendants, led by Ahmed Raji (SAN), told the court that the INEC officials have filed applications challenging the territorial jurisdiction of the court.
Raji said the defendants are challenging the decision of the prosecution to want to try the case in a court in Abuja when the alleged offences for which they were charged were allegedly committed in Rivers State.
He urged the court to resolve the issue of jurisdiction first before requesting the defendants to plea to the charge.
Alilu said he intends to oppose the defendants’ applications and sought a date to be allowed to file a counter affidavit to that effect.
Justice John Tsoho acceded to Alilu’s request and adjourned to April 7 for hearing of all applications.
The defendants, who are described as electoral officers and workers of INEC were said to have between December 7 to 10, 2016 at Port Harcourt, Rivers State, conspired to convert the sum of N360,000,000 directly from bribery and corruption in connection with the Rivers State re-run election, which took place on December 10, 2016.



This post first appeared on Nigerian Latest News Papers News Online, please read the originial post: here

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23 INEC Workers Accused Of Receiving N350m Bribe From Wike Object To Trial

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