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N2.2bn case: Fayose threatened, compromised our witness, says EFCC


The N2.2bn fraud trial of former Ekiti State Governor Ayodele Fayose was stalled on Friday as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission accused the ex-governor of threatening and compromising one of the prosecution witnesses.



Lawyer for the EFCC, Mr Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), told Justice C.J. Aneke that the anti-graft agency had decided to replace the one allegedly compromised by Fayose.



Jacobs alleged that the defendant threatened Adewale Aladegbola, a bullion van driver with Zenith Bank, Ado Ekiti branch.



The prosecutor said as a result of the alleged threat and compromise, when Aladegbola appeared before Justice Mojisola Olatoregun, who was earlier hearing the case, the witness turned around in his testimony to give a different evidence from what he wrote in his statement at the EFCC office during investigation.



“It is only in our country that this can happen; the witness was compromised by this defendant,” Jacob said.



He accused Fayose of attempting to pervert the course of justice, saying, “If not because of my intervention, this defendant would have been facing another charge.”



Fayose’s lawyers, Messrs Ola Olanipekun (SAN) and Olalekan Ojo (SAN), had earlier opposed the attempt to replace Aladegbola with Johnson Abidakun, who is the Head of Operations, Zenith Bank, Ado-Ekiti branch.



The defence lawyers contended that the prosecution did not have the liberty to change a witness  because such a witness failed to give evidence favourable to them.



Olanipekun and Ojo described the attempt to replace Aladegbola with Abidakun as an abuse of prosecutorial power by the EFCC.



They urged Justice Aneke to stop Abidakun from testifying in place of Aladegbola, who had earlier testified before Justice Olatoregun.



But the prosecutor insisted that the proceedings before Justice Olatoregun were no longer relevant as the matter had started afresh when the case was was transferred to Justice Aneke.



was transferred to Justice Aneke.
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