Epunchng - Most read newspaper in Nigeria 12th-Oct-2017 - Page 38

38 THURSDAY, OCTOBER 12, 2017 Court trivia The Joseph Daudu example Ade Adesomoju, Abuja M AnY have criticised the composition of the Justice Ayo Salami-led Corruption and Financial Crime Cases Trial Monitoring Committee newly constituted by the national Judicial Council. Th i s i s b e c a u s e o f t h e inclusion of some lawyers, including Mr. Joseph Daudu (SAn), a former President of the nigerian Bar Association, as a member of the 15-man panel. The critics say Daudu, like some other lawyers on the panel, is involved in some of the high- profile corruption cases that the committee is to monitor. Prominent among Daudu’s clients who are being prosecuted for corruption charges are the detained former national Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.), and a former Governor of Benue State, Mr. Gabriel Suswam. Interestingly, may be many of the critics would have changed their narrative if they had witnessed the proceedings that took place before Justice LCA dialogue Oladimeji Ramon T HE Obi of Onitsha, His Royal Highness Igwe Alfred Achebe, and the Emir of Kano, His Royal Highness Muhammadu Sanusi II, alongside other prominent traditional rulers, will on October 17, 2017 engage with arbitrators in the country to dialogue on the place of traditional institutions in the resolution of disputes vis-à-vis the country’s development. The monarchs, from the three geopolitical zones in the country, and the Alternative Dispute Resolution experts will converge on Lagos at a one-day “policy dialogue” organised by the Lagos Court of Arbitration in collaboration with the Centre for Public Policy. The policy dialogue, tagged, “Institutional evolution: Impact on the polity and growth of the nigerian economy,” according to a statement by the LCA on Wednesday, seeks to “harmonise the rule of law with traditional dispute resolution mechanisms to revolutionise nigeria’s (economic) competitiveness. The LCA said such an engagement between the arbitrators and traditional rulers was long overdue; adding that the dialogue was critical for nigeria’s progress. It said, “Remarkable is the evolving interaction between traditional and formal institutions and how they continue to shape nigeria’s developmental outcomes. The study and analysis of this evolution of institutions in nigeria is critical to the progress of the country.” Gabriel Kolawole of the Federal High Court in Abuja on Tuesday when Daudu appeared as Suswam’s lead defence counsel. The Office of the Attorney General of the Federation was scheduled to open its case by calling its first witness to prove the allegation of diversion of a total sum of n9.79bn meant for Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme by Suswam and his two other former aides in the state. But while expressing reservation about the attitude of the prosecution, Daudu indicated his readiness to go on, but the lawyer for one of the defendants, Mr. Innocent Daa’gba, expressed doubt if he would be able to cross-examine the witness. Within a short period, the first prosecution witness led by Mr. Aminu Alilu from the AGF office commenced and ended his evidence-in-chief. As if mindful of the role of his committee to monitor the factors constituting delay in the high-profile corruption cases, Daudu, without delay, started cross-examining the witness, and in a jiffy, he was done. Yet, an adjournment was foisted on the court, but Daudu did not have a hand in it. Justice Kolawole adjourned when Daa’gba said he needed to obtain a document to cross-examine the witness, whom he was only notified of by the prosecution on Monday.