Justice Kolawole Omotosho of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has adjourned the hearing of an alleged N3bn case against Ali Bello nephew to Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State, and three others to May 22, 2023.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission had on February 8, 2023, arraigned Bello, alongside Abba Adauda, Yakubu Adabenege, and Iyadai Sadat, on an 18-count criminal charge and they pleaded not guilty.
EFCC opened its case by calling two witnesses a compliance officer from Zenith Bank, Daniel Udoh; and a compliance officer from the United Bank for Africa, Bananda Edward, who tendered bank statements.
The EFCC's prosecutor Rotimi Oyedepo, SAN, led the witnesses who tendered the documents before the court.
The defence counsel, A.M. Aliyu, SAN, objected to the admissibility of the two documents, stating that he would address his objection in his final written address.
During cross-examination, Udoh admitted that the bank statement he presented did not belong to the Kogi State Government but to the Government House administration, adding that he didn't know the defendants in the matter.
He stated that he was not an employee at the IT department of his bank and was not involved in the entry of the information that had been printed out as a bank statement.
The second witness, Bananda Edward, a compliance officer with UBA, also tendered the statement of account of Kogi State Government House (Exhibit C) and the Certificate of Compliance (Exhibit D).
He gave an account of inflow and outflow from the said account from September 1, 2021 to April 2022.
The defence counsel objected to the evidence relating to Abdulsalam Hudu, Government House cashier, on the ground that he was not a defendant in the matter.
He challenged it on the basis of relevance to the instant action and said his objection would be raised in his final written address. However, Justice Omotosho adjourned the case to May 22, 2023, for the continuation of the hearing.