Judge threatens to jail Obanikoro over Fayose

Mojisola Olatoregun, judge of a federal high court in Lagos, has threatened to jail Musiliu Obanikoro, former minister of state for defence, if he fails to appear before the court.

The former minister, one of the witnesses testifying against Ayodele Fayose, ex-governor of Ekiti state, who is standing trial over an alleged N2.2bn fraud, was absent in court on Thursday.

On Monday, Obanikoro had said he was testifying against Fayose reluctantly because they enjoyed a good relationship while they were both members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

At the resumed hearing, Rotimi Jacobs, prosecuting counsel of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), informed the judge that Obanikoro could not appear due to his health condition.

Jacobs tendered a medical report from an Ikoyi hospital to the judge, saying the former minister was ill and hospitalised.

Irked by the report, Olatoregun said if the medical document proved to be fake, the hospital and the doctor who issued it would lose their licences.

The judge maintained that if Obanikoro did not appear in court at the next sitting, he would be jailed for three months “so that he can be coming to court in black maria.”

“He must present himself before the court on the next adjourned date or be compelled to do so,” the judge ordered as she adjourned the case till March 18.