May 4, 2018
Distasteful Comments By ICPC Chairman: Our Response – Metuh’s Counsel
Our attention has been drawn to a recent statement credited to the Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) Musa Abubakar, in which he singled out the case of our Client, Chief Olisa Metuh, and claimed that we have been applying technicalities to delay the case.
This statement made at a public event regarding a matter that is sudjudice is not only in bad taste; it is in total breach of a fundamental principle of law accepted in every civilised society.
In his comments, Dr. Abubakar noted that the prosecution closed its case since October 2016 but that Chief Metuh has been employing interlocutory appeals to delay his defence.
It is instructive to note that Dr. Abubakar who had never attended the trial of Chief Metuh knew exactly the month prosecution closed its case. The case is not prosecuted by his ICPC but the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), yet he has in-depth knowledge of what goes on in Chief Metuh’s matter because ICPC and EFCC are in unison that a conviction must occur. This validates Chief Metuh’s outcry at the conspiracy against him by the powers that be.
We believe that if Dr. Abubakar bothered to know the following facts, he will not so easily betray his partisanship:
- The case of Chief Olisa Metuh has progressed faster than any other trial that commenced at the same time with it.
- The Prosecution has amended its charges twice, thereby causing delay on its own.
- The accusation that interlocutory appeals have been employed to delay the trail is unfounded. The trial judge in Chief Metuh’s case in his Ruling on Chief Metuh’s Application for leave to travel for medical reasons delivered on the 19th of April 2018 actually blamed Chief Metuh for not appealing his interlocutory decisions.
- The Court of Appeal in its judgment on Appeal No: CA/A/159C/2017, Between Olisa Metuh vs Federal Republic of Nigeria & Anor, delivered on 29th of September, 2017, held that Chief Metuh, contrary to the trial Court’s finding, has not delayed his trial. This decision is subsisting.
It is clear that Dr. Abubakar is a part of or a victim of a highly orchestrated media trial, which has been unleashed against Chief Metuh in his trial.
It is this same on-going media trial that put unnecessary pressure and forced the hands of the court in our Client’s application for leave to travel to attend to his health. Neither the prosecution nor the court accepted our request that an independent medical team be assembled to verify the health situation of our client, who is still suffering severe pains and the risk of deterioration.
We therefore urge the general public to read in-between the lines when such men speak.
Ben-Chuks Nwosu Esq,
Counsel to Chief Olisa Metuh.