Friday, March 2, 2012

Court frees Gbenga Daniel of all corruption charges

The former governor of Ogun state, Olugbenga Daniel has been discharged of all 43 count charge of financial appropriation filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) at the Ogun state High Court. The presiding judge, Justice Olanrewaju Mabekoje during his ruling on Friday said that the EFCC failed to seek the prayer of the court “before filling the information that contained the indictable offences proffered against the defendant.” Justice Mabekoje, giving his judgement noted that the EFCC as a prosecuting agency committed a “fundamental error for not seeking the leave of the court before filling the charges containing the indictable offences.” The former governor is standing trial for financial impropriety during his two year term as the governor of Ogun state from 2003 to 2011. Mr Daniel is accused of stealing, fraudulent conversion of local government funds, failure to declare assets and conversion of state government landed property for personal use. Counsel to the defendant, Profesor Taiwo Osipitan described the judgement as a welcome development while Counsel to the EFCC, Mr Rotimi Jacobs stated that it was a temporary setback, adding that “the EFCC would soon approach the court once again to put the records straight and follow due process.” The embattled former governor was full of praises to God while reacting to the judgement. His supporters were present at the court premises and they all danced and cheered to the ruling.