Andrew Yakubu , former Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Group Managing Director (GMD) has told a Federal High Court in Abuja he has no case to answer in a suit bordering on $9,772, 800 and £74,000.00 recovered from his house.
Yakubu is being tried on a six-count charge brought against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for allegedly failing to declare assets and engaging in money laundering.
The EFCC had, on February 3, 2017, raided Yakubu’s house, which is located on Chikun Road, Sabon Tasha area of Kaduna South Local Government Area of Kaduna State, from where it claimed to have recovered $9,772, 800 and £74,000.00, which informed the charge.
The ex-NNPC’s boss contended, in the no-case submission he filed on November 6, that he has no case to answer, arguing that the essential elements of the charge brought against him were not proved by the prosecution to warrant his being called to enter defence.
According to the defendant, the evidence led by the prosecution’s seven witnesses did not establish a case against him to require him to defend himself, therefore, praying the court to strike out the charge and discharge and acquit him.
Prosecuting lawyer Ben Ikani announced the closure of the prosecution’s case on October 17, this year, at the conclusion of the testimony by Suleiman Mohammed, an official of the EFCC, who testified as seventh prosecution witness, following which the court adjourned to December 5 for the defence to open its case.
In his testimony, Mohammed explained how a team of EFCC’s investigators, which he was a member, recovered the money, estimated at N3 billion.
Led in evidence by Ikani, Mohammed said the money was hidden in a fireproof safe, allegedly belonging to Yakubu. The huge safe has since been tendered in evidence in the proceedings.
The prosecution witness said the recovery process and the counting of the money were recorded and saved in a 32-gigabyte memory card and in another two mini disks, which were admitted as exhibits by the court on October 17, this year.
However, Ikani was absent in court yesterday. There was no reason why he was not in court.
Meanwhile, Defence lawyer Anone Usman told the court that the case was adjourned to yesterday for the defence to open its case.
Usman said, upon the closure of the prosecution’s case, the defence filed a no-case submission on behalf of the defendant, as provided under the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA) 2015. He said the no-case submission was filed on November 6, and served on the prosecution on the same date.
Usman later applied for a date for parties to adopt the processes in respect of the no-case submission.
Justice Ahmed Mohammed adjourned to January 17 next year for adoption of written addresses on the no-case submission.
Justice Mohammed also directed that hearing notice be issued on the prosecution.