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False Assets Declaration: Onnoghen’s Absence Stalls CCT Trial



(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – The ongoing trial of the suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Walter Onnoghen, at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) was stalled Tuesday due to absence of the respondent.

The former CJN Lawyer Chief Adegboyega Awomolo (SAN), explained to the three-man panel of the CCT, that the suspect was suffering from toothache and high blood pressure which needed to be treated urgently.

Awomolo justified the defendant’s absence, by presenting a medical report obtained by Onnoghen from the hospital where he was said to be receiving treatment.

Responding, the prosecuting counsel, Mr. Aliyu Umar (SAN), acknowledged that he had been given a photocopy of the medical report.

He noted that he would have expressed an observation about the report but for the comment of the doctor who signed it, stating that Justice Onnoghen had a high blood pressure of 410/121.

The prosecutor noted that the doctor also indicated in the letter that the defendant needed to observe bed rest.

It would be recalled that the Tribunal Chairman, Justice Danladi Umar, had ruled Monday that hearing in the case would be daily.

Danladi also deferred rulings on two separate applications filed by Onnoghen to challenge the jurisdiction of the tribunal to hear the charges against him till when final judgment would be delivered in the case.

Following the agreement by the prosecution and the recommendation in the medical report that the defendant needs a bed rest for 72 hours, the tribunal adjourned the case till Monday, March 18.

The former CJN is being tried on six counts, including false asset declaration. Onnoghen has however admitted he made a mistake – claiming that he forgot to input the disputed properties and cash in his CCB form.

 

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