THE Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has directed that criminal summons be issued on Senator Ifeanyi Ubah and his company, Capital Oil and Gas Limited.
Justice Nicholas Oweibo gave this directive in the criminal prosecution of the Senator by the Federal Government of Nigeria on an 8-count charge bordering on his alleged indebtedness to Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria, AMCON sometimes in 2019 which includes conspiracy in making false claims in relation to the actual values of certain assets transferred to AMCON under a consent judgment obtained in 2012 contrary to Section 54(1) of the AMCON Act.
At the proceedings of the suit on Tuesday, the prosecutor, Mr. Tunde Lawal of the law firm of Kunle Adegoke SAN & Co informed the Court that the Defendants had been served with the amended charge and hearing notice of today’s date. He also told the Court that at the last adjourned date, Senator Ifeanyi Ubah was not in Court and hearing notice of that date was also served on him.
On that basis, he asked that the court issue a bench warrant against Sen. Ubah.
The counsel to the defendants, Mrs Ifeoma Esom, informed the Court that the matter was for report of settlement/plea and that they were just informed this morning that settlement had failed, and it was on the basis of settlement that the 1st Defendant was not in Court
The prosecutor objected on the ground that settlement cannot be reported on this matter as it is a criminal matter, noting that parties may choose to settle outside the Court but cannot make that part of the business of the court.
He also noted that the best that can happen is a plea bargain and such discussions on a settlement outside court do not give the 1st defendant, Senator Ubah the authority to be absent from court.
After listening to the parties, the court declined to issue a bench warrant but ordered that summons be served on Senator Ifeanyi Ubah through his counsel, for him to appear in court on the next adjourned date.
The court also stated that at the next adjourned date, if Senator Ubah fails to appear in Court, a warrant will be issued for his arrest.
Justice Oweibo has adjourned the matter to Oct. 18th October for the arraignment of Sen. Ubah.