HomeCourt room newsAlleged Sexual Harassment: ICPC Closes Case Against Ex UNICAL Dean of Law

Alleged Sexual Harassment: ICPC Closes Case Against Ex UNICAL Dean of Law

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The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), on Wednesday, closed its case against Prof. Cyril Ndifon, the suspended Dean of the Faculty of Law, University of Calabar (UNICAL), and his co-defendant, Sunny Anyanwu.

ICPC’s counsel, Osuobeni Akponimisingha, told Justice James Omotosho of a Federal High Court, Abuja after Bwaigu Fungo, the 4th prosecution witness, a Forensic and intelligence Analyst with the commission, was cross-examined by the defence lawyer, Joe Agi, SAN.

Recall that Akponimisingha had earlier informed the court that the anti-corruption commission had about seven witnesses and also planned to amend the charge to increase the witness number in proving their case against the defendants.

Ndifon was, on Jan. 25, re-arraigned alongside Anyanwu as 1st and 2nd defendants on an amended four-count charge bordering on alleged sexual harassment and attempt to perverse the cause of justice.

Anyanwu, who is one of the lawyers in the defence, was joined in the amended charge filed on Jan. 22 by the ICPC on allegation that he called one of the prosecution witnesses on her mobile telephone during the pendency of the charge against Ndifon to threatened her.

They, however, pleaded not guilty to the counts.

Justice Omotosho had, on Friday, granted bail to Ndifon.and Anyanwu in the sum of N250 million and N50 million respectively with two sureties each in the like sum.

Upon resumed trial on Wednesday, Fungo’s cross-examination continued.

When Agi asked the forensic analyst if he knew what Ndifon and TKJ, the female Diploma student alleged to have been sexually harassed, discussed in the call log, he said he did not know.

When the lawyer asked the witness if he knew the first communication between Ndifon and TKJ, Fungo said from the analysis he carried out on the mobile phones, their first communication through the WhatsApp channel was on March 14, 2023 and the message was: “Good evening sir.”

The witness, who also said that he did not analyse TKJ’s phone in the course of the investigation, said he was not given TKJ’s phone by the ICPC to analyse.

After Fungo’s testimony, Akponimisingha told the court that the prosecution was closing its case.

 “This is the case for the prosecution and we have closed our case today,” he said.

Responding, counsel to the defendants’, Agi, told the court that  they planned to file a no-case submission.

He said he would need seven days to file the application.

The ICPC lawyer assured the court that immediately the defence served him with the no-case submission, he would also need about seven days to reply.

Justice Omotosho consequently adjourned the matter until Feb. 27 to hear the defendants’ no-case submission.

Meanwhile, Ndifon and Anyanwu were yet to perfect their bail described as being too stringent.

Justice Omotosho had, on Feb. 9, admitted Ndifon to a N250 million bail with two sureties.

The judge held that the two sureties, who must be owners of landed property in the FCT with registered titles and minimum valuation of N150 million, must submit their certified bank statements to the registrar of the court.

He also directed Ndifon to submit his international passport to the court registrar.

The judge ordered the suspended dean to sign an undertaking not to interfere with the case, be ready to stand his trial and not to delay the trial.

 Also ruling on Anyanwu’s bail plea, Justice Omotosho, who granted him a N50 million bail with two sureties, held that one of the sureties must have a property in FCT, but not with a registered title.

The judge directed the sureties to file their bank statements and ordered Anyanwu to equally signed an undertaking not to interfere with the trial, to be ready to stand his trial and not delay the trial.

Justice Omotosho also ordered accelerated hearing of the matter.

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