HomeNewsCourt Dismisses ICPC Case, Acquittes NIFOR Staff

Court Dismisses ICPC Case, Acquittes NIFOR Staff

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The Edo State High Court sitting in Benin City has acquitted two former staff of the Nigerian Institute of Oil Palm Research, Charles Aisagbonhi and Edward Ujadughele, of alleged diversion of their Duty Tour Allowances for personal use rather than for the official reasons the sums were released.

The allegation was brought before the court by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission.

Delivering judgment on the suit marked B/ICPC/IC/2020, Justice Efe Ikponmwonba ruled that the prosecution failed to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

“It is my view that the evidence of the prosecution witnesses does not show that the defendants conferred corrupt advantage on themselves. There is no evidence as to how by not entering the court the defendants conferred a corrupt advantage on themselves.

“There is also no evidence that they used the money for other things as against what they were supposed to use it for, considering the fact that they said they went to Akure. In fact, it is my view that this is a case of witch-hunt which should not be condoned by allowing the court to be used to effect it.”

“I find that the essential ingredients of the offence under Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices Act have not been established. After considering the evidence led by the prosecution and the defence of the defendants, I find that the elements of the offence have not been proved beyond a reasonable doubt.”

“The defendants are, therefore, discharged and acquitted,” the judge ruled.

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