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EFCC Pledges To Set Aside Arrest Warrant If Bello Shows Up In Court

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has said that the arrest warrant issued against the immediate past governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello could be set aside if he were to show up in court as required.

EFCC counsel, Kemi Pinheiro (SAN) said this on Tuesday at the Federal High Court in Abuja after a member of Bello’s legal team, Mr Adeola Adedipe (SAN) said his client would have loved to show up in court but he is afraid of the order of arrest hanging over his head.

Pinheiro however assured that it could be set aside “As his prosecution, I will personally apply that the arrest warrant be set aside if he comes to court next adjourned date.

“If he gives an undertaking that his client will be in court on the next date, I can assure him that the arrest warrant will not be executed”, Pinehero had said.

Just like last week, Bello was again absent for his arraignment in court.

Bello is facing a 19-count charge bordering on money laundering, breach of trust and misappropriation of funds to the tune of N80.2 billion.

Adedipe urged the court to set aside the exparte order of arrest it issued against Bello last week.

Justice Emeka Nwite had last Wednesday issued a warrant of arrest on Yahaya Bello.

Adedipe however stated that as at the time the order of arrest was issued on his client, the charge had not been served on him as required by the law.

“As at the time the warrant was issued, the order for substituted service had not been made. That order was just made this morning”.

Pinheiro, on his part, urged the court to refuse the application unless the defendant made himself available for his trial.

He stated that the defendant cannot stay in hiding and file numerous applications for his arrest warrant to be vacated.

He held that Bello should not be heard on the applied application.

“The main issue should be ascertaining the whereabouts of the defendant. All these applications he is filing are nothing but dilatory tactics intended to delay his arraignment and frustrate the proceedings.

“Our position is that the defendant should be denied the right of being heard until he is physically present before this court.”

Pinehero also held that as stated in section 396 of ACJA, 2015, the court cannot effectively assume jurisdiction to decide any application or objection in the matter, until the defendant is arraigned.

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