N33bn alleged fraud: Drama as Minister Buhari breaks down in court, details emerge
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N33bn alleged fraud: Drama as Minister Buhari breaks down in court, details emerge

  • The trial of Saleh Mamman, former energy minister in the government of former President Muhammadu Buhari, has been postponed due to health problems
  • The EFCC filed 12 counts of money laundering against Mamman, accusing him of laundering N33 billion
  • Despite his earlier breakdown, Mamman assured the court that he was able to continue the hearing.

FCT, Abuja – The trial of Saleh Mamman, a former energy minister in the government of former President Muhammadu Buhari, was adjourned on Thursday at the Federal High Court in Abuja due to health problems.

Legit.ng recalls that the EFCC filed 12 counts of money laundering against Mamman.

N33bn alleged fraud: Drama as Minister Buhari breaks down in court, details emerge
Former Energy Minister Saleh Mamman loses consciousness in court Photo: Saleh Mamman
Source: Facebook

Part of the charge was money laundering to the tune of N33 billion, Cable reported.

Mr Mamman, who was due to enter a guilty plea on Thursday morning, fainted outside the courtroom before the hearing began.

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His defence lawyer, Femi Ate, SAN, informed Justice James Omotosho about Mamman’s condition when the case was listed for hearing to obtain his guilty plea.

When the trial resumed, Mamman entered the courtroom and stood in the defendant’s dock with some of his wet clothes, Everyday Nigerian reported.

Judge Omotosho asked why Mamman was sweating and whether it was raining outside.

The former minister explained on the quay that he was doused with water.

Adeyinka Olumide-Fusika, SAN, a lawyer for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), informed the court that although the hearing was scheduled, an incident occurred outside the courtroom.

Olumide-Fusika recalled that she spoke to Ate about Mamman’s poor health outside the courtroom.

Ate said:

“Mamman fainted when brought to the court and had to be resuscitated and treated by medical staff of the Federal High Court. He was served this morning.”

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The senior lawyer appealed to Olumide-Fusika for his understanding for the postponement of the hearing, suggesting that the hearing should be scheduled for Monday when his client would be in better health.

The judge noted, however, that due to the court’s heavy workload, the earliest possible hearing date would be the end of September.

Ate subsequently withdrew his oral motion for an adjournment.

Olumide-Fusika’s office informed the court that an amended indictment was filed that same morning to correct an error in the defendant’s name.

He requested that a new indictment be read to Mamman so that he could plead guilty, but Judge Omotosho did not agree.

The judge then asked if Mamman was well enough to plead guilty that day, to which Mamman replied in the affirmative.

Mamman explained that he lost consciousness outside the courtroom because he took medication on an empty stomach, which caused his blood pressure to drop while he waited to be summoned.

Despite this, Mamman confirmed he was able to continue with the interrogation.

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The judge said:

“It could happen to anyone.”

Tinubu government advises on ways to fight corruption

In another report, human rights activist Olanrewaju Suraju called on the government of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to develop a clear and implementable plan to combat corruption.

Legit.ng reported that Suraju emphasised the crucial role of an independent judiciary in ensuring accountability of public officials, irrespective of their political affiliation.

Source: Legit.ng