Fraud charges against Kawu, others replaced
Justice Folashade Ogunbanjo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, yesterday, struck out charges filed by the Federal Government against the Director-General, National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Ishaq Kawu.
Others named in the suit include the Managing Director, Pinnacle Communications, Dipo Onifade; Chairman, Board of Pinnacle Communications, Lucky Omoluwa; and Pinnacle Communications.
Government had filed a 12-count charge against the defendants for allegedly defrauding it to the tune of N2.5 billion, meant for the digital switchover programme.The court, however, struck out the charge dated January 21, following an oral application by the prosecution counsel, Henry Emore, requesting that the charges be withdrawn.
Emore informed the court that he was substituting the charges dated January 21 with another dated February 21, as the initial charges contained noticeable errors. And since counsel to Onifade, Omoluwa and Pinnacle, Alex Izinyon (SAN), did not oppose the application for the withdrawal of the charges, Justice Ogunbanjo went ahead to strike it out.
It was also replaced with another set of charges dated February 21. The court equally granted an order of substituted service against the first defendant, Kawu. It granted that the charge and summons be pasted on the last known address of Kawu.
Justice Ogunbanjo directed the prosecution counsel to effect service of the charge on Onifade, Omoluwa and Pinnacle within 48 hours since Izinyon had earlier accepted to receive the charge sheet on their behalf.The court, thereafter, adjourned till March 12 for arraignment of the accused persons.