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Appeal Court dismisses FG’s bid to retry Orji Kalu for alleged N7.6 billion fraud 



Senator Orji Uzor Kalu 1 e1679400351735

The Abuja Court of Appeal has dismissed the Federal Government’s request to initiate a new trial against ex-Abia Governor, Orji Uzor Kalu, for allegations of fraud and money laundering amounting to N7.6 billion. 

Justice Joseph Oyewole, ruling in Abuja on Wednesday, led the appellate court in rejecting the government’s attempt. 

Justice Oyewole ruled that the Federal Government’s appeal record was deficient and not credible enough for any court to fulfil its request. 

Justice Oyewole noted that the appeal record lacked compilation, signature, and certification by any legally recognized individual. 

He specifically pointed out that the legal requirement of displaying the name of the individual who compiled, signed, and certified the record was not met.  

What you should know 

Orji Kalu, who was the governor of Abia State from 1999 to 2007, was earlier convicted and handed a 12-year jail term by the Lagos Division of the Federal High Court. 

The trial court convicted him alongside his firm, Slok Nigeria Limited, and a former Director of Finance in the state, Mr. Jones Udeogu. 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had alleged that the defendants pilfered about N7.6 billion from the Abia State Treasury. 

  • However, following an appeal that was lodged by Udeogu, the Supreme Court quashed his conviction and remitted the case file back for retrial. 
  • Shortly after the former governor was released from prison, the EFCC moved to re-arraign him and his co-defendants again. 
  • Dissatisfied with the move, both Kalu, who is currently the Senator representing Abia North, and his firm filed separate suits to challenge their retrial 
  • The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja on Wednesday therefore struck out an appeal the Federal Government filed to reopen the trial of a former governor of Abia Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu. 

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