The Court of Appeal, Abuja Division, yesterday, dismissed the appeal filed by a former member of the House of Representatives from Kano State, Hon. Farouk Lawan, seeking to terminate the $3 million bribery charges brought against him by the federal government
The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) had arraigned Lawan on a three-count criminal charge bordering on alleged bribe to the tune of $3 million.
He was accused to have demanded the sum of $3 million from Mr. Femi Otedola to remove his company’s name, Zenon Oil from the list of companies under investigation by the legislature on alleged subsidy fraud.
He was said to have received the sum of $500, 000 from Otedola as part-payment of the alleged $3 million bribe, when he was Chairman of the House Committee on Oil and Gas.
He had approached the Court of Appeal to set aside the decision of Justice Angela Otaluka of a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), which rejected his no-case submission in the bribery trial.
However, the appellate court in a unanimous decision held that a prima facie case was well established against him that would warrant him to enter his defence in the matter.
In the judgment delivered by Justice Olabisi Ige, the Court of Appeal held that the decision of the lower court was well founded.
According to Ige, contrary to the argument of Lawan, the prosecution’s evidence at the trial court was not in any way discredited, hence the rejection of his no-case submission.