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You’re Not Guilty, Court Tells Dimeji Bankole

Dimeji Bankole with officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission
Dimeji Bankole with officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission
Former Speaker House of Representatives (Nigeria) Mr. Dimeji Bankole was on Friday acquitted by a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, Nigeria, of all the 16 count charges brought against him.

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He was arraigned for allegedly obtaining illegal loans to the tune of N9 billion for himself and members of the House of Representatives while he was in office.

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Justice Evoh Stephen Chukwu ruled that based on the testimonies of six witnesses, the former Speaker was not associated with any wrong doing in the processes leading to the award of the said contracts to justify his trial.

He held that prosecution failed to prove essential ingredients to justify the charge where the former Speaker was alleged to have colluded with others as covered by counts 3, 6, 9, 12, 13 and 14 of the charge, noting that collusion connotes an agreement to commit a crime which was not shown by the prosecution witnesses in their testimonies.

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“From the totality of the six witnesses, nothing shows any act of collusion on the part of the accused person. Nothing shows that he interfered with the process of the award of the contracts. No mention about anybody fronting for him was made by the prosecution witnesses and the process was also said to have complied with the requirements. Based on the totality of these witnesses’ testimonies, I hold that there is nothing to justify his being called to enter his defence as none of the essential ingredients have been proved by the prosecution,” Chukwu noted.

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