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Orubebe Gets Charges Dropped

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The Federal Government has today reviewed corruption charges filed against a former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Mr Godsday Orubebe (not to be confused with Twitter Orubebe of course).

The number of the original counts filed against Orubebe has dropped from four to one, thereby eliminating the charges that have to do with the acceptance of N70m bribe by the ex-minister.

The new count charge retained only one out of the two counts bordering on false assets declaration. ‎
The Lead prosecutor on the case, Mr. Mohammed Diri, pointed out that the amended charge was dated March 7, 2016 but was filed on March 8.

He cited that the amended charge was filed in consonant with the provisions of section 214 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015.

The new charge was served on the defence team a few moments before the start of proceedings without any complaints or objections.
The defence team led by Mr. Selekowei Larry (SAN) and the tribunal hearing the case accepted the new charges and struck out the former ones.

The tribunal chairman also directed the fresh charge be read to the defendant.
Orubebe, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge on Tuesday.

Orubebe is on trial for failing to mention his assets Abuja when he assumed office as Minister of Niger Delta Affairs on 29 June, 2011. This was said to be in contravention of the provisions of section 15 of Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act.

The former minister was initially arraigned on November 8, 2015 before the ‎fresh amendment to the earlier four counts.

Diri disclosed to the tribunal on Tuesday that he had three proposed prosecution witness‎ and was willing to call them in one day.
He sought an adjournment to open the prosecution’s case.

The case is fixed for April 7 for further hearing.



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