Arms deal: Metuh wants court to compel Ex-President Jonathan to testify for him

Olisa Metuh
Former National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olisa Metuh

The former National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olisa Metuh on Monday asked the Federal High Court in Abuja for a subpoena to compel former President Goodluck Jonathan to appear in court to testify for him in the seven-count charge of money laundering preferred against him by the Federal Government.

Counsel to the former PDP spokesman, Dr. Onyechi Ikpeazu (SAN) told the court, after the evidence of the 7th Defence Witness, Samben Nwosu that the former National Security Adviser (NSA), Col. Sambo Mohammed Dasuki (retd) was the next witness the first defendant (Metuh) intends to call.
Recalled that the trial Judge, Justice Okon Abang had earlier in a ruling, turned down Metuh’s request to subpoena the former NSA to appear in court to testify for him.
Dissatisfied with the ruling, Metuh challenged the decision of the trial court at the Court of Appeal, Abuja Division, which, in a judgment delivered on September 29, 2017  ordered Justice Abang to sign the subpoena to compel Dasuki to appear in court to testify for Metuh.
When Ikpeazu announced Dasuki as the first defendant’s next witness, Justice Abang asked if the defence has another witness, apart from the former NSA and Ikpeazu, in his response said the next defence witness is former President Goodluck Jonathan.
Ikpeazu said he had written to the former President and he has not responded and added that, “Our plan is to apply for the subpoena of the former President to compel him to come to court and testify for Metuh.”
He said the first defendant is yet to file application for the subpoena of the former President when the first one, in respect of Dasuki had not been signed
But, the trial Judge, Justice Abang told counsel in the matter that he, in compliance with the order of the Court of Appeal signed the subpoena on Dasuki, compelling the former NSA to appear in court on October 25 (tomorrow) to testify for the former PDP spokesman.
In his reaction, the prosecution counsel, Sylvanus Tahir said the first defendant should call another witness apart from Dasuki and the former President Jonathan.
Meanwhile, the former NSA, through his counsel, Ahmed Raji (SAN)  has approached the court with an application, dated October 20, 2017, wherein he is and seeking an order setting aside the issuance and service of the subpoena issued by the court, compelling him to appear  to testify for Metuh, until his (Sambo) release from the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS).
Tahir said the prosecution will oppose the application by the former NSA, who is not a party in the matter.
“We will be filing a notice of preliminary objection because, this is not the appropriate court to file the application”, he told the court.
While Metuh’s counsel said he will oppose Dasuki’s application, counsel to Destra Investment Limited, the second defendant in the matter, Tochukwu Onwugbufor said he intends to take a careful look at the application to enable him decide what to do.
After listening to submissions of counsel, Justice Abang said he had complied with the order of the Court of Appeal and had subpoena Dasuki to appear in court on October 25 at the instance of the defence.
He adjourned the matter till today for the first defendant to call another witness as Dasuki was billed to appear in court tomorrow to give evidence.
The court will also hear arguments for or against the application of the former NSA seeking an order of the court setting aside the subpoena of the court.
Metuh and his company, Destra Investment Limited are being tried for allegedly collecting N400 million from the former NSA out of the $2.1 billion meant for the procurement of arms to equip the armed forces to fight Boko Haram insurgency in the North Eastern part of the country.

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