Badeh Ex- Military Chief returns to court as financial transaction documents surface

Alex Badeh has returned to court as prosecuting counsel submits financial transaction documents as exhibits.

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The Federal High Court, in Abuja, on Tuesday admitted in evidence, documents showing financial transactions in the on-going trial of the former Chief of defence staff, Alex Badeh.

The documents given showed transactions between the Nigerian Airforce and the Ryte Builders Nigeria Limited through Zenith Bank and United Bank for Africa (UBA).

The judge, Justice Okon Abang, gave the ruling after counsel to the first defendant Akin Olujimi(SAN), raised objection to the admissibility of the said documents, by the prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Jacobs ( SAN).

Abang in his ruling held that though the documents are public documents and they are documents that do not require payment of fees before admissibility.

The judge also held that there was no law prescribing fees for the documents to be obtained unlike that in the CAC case cited by the counsel to the first defendant.

He also held that it is sufficient that since the witness made the documents, he does not need to sign them.

Abang, while stating that he agreed with the defence that where a Supreme Court has interpreted a law all other courts must abide by the ruling.

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He said the issues canvassed must be the same as the one cited adding that the situation did  not apply in the circumstances of this case.

He subsequently overruled the objection raised by the defence counsel, and admitted the documents in evidence as exhibits B6 and B7 respectively.

The matter was adjourned to Oct.12 for continuation of trial.

Earlier, the prosecuting counsel had applied to tender two documents addressed to the Managers of UBA and Zeinth Banks.

The testimony was given by the sixth prosecution witness Mohammed Sini, who was the then Camp Finance Officer of Nigerian Air Force (NFA)

The witness told the court that on assumption of office, he was intimated of the monthly disbursement of 558,200,000, officially earmarked for maintenance of the office of the Chief of Air Staff.

He said: “In 2012, I was posted to Camp NAF, as the Camp Finance Officer, my schedule involved payment of salaries, operations and miscellaneous, disbursement of funds with operations and overhead expenditure of the unit.

” In relation to accounts, I report to a Director of Finance and Accounts within the headquarters and I take instructions from him with respect to financial operations within the unit.

“I took over from Group Captain Ifeobu when I reported, he told me that a certain a figure of this amount NGN 558,200,000 is meant for the official administrative maintenance of the office of the Chief of Air Staff

Sini also told the court that he was to be reporting to the Director, Finance and Account on the details of disbursement.

According to the witness, it is the duty of the cashier to pay these balances into the accounts for payment of operation, Ration Cash Allowances and Sundry Training Beats.

The witness further told the court that the paper work carried out by his office was to generate mandate to the bank for the release of the funds to enable them execute instructions.'

ALSO READ: Alex badeh regains freedom after meeting bail conditions

When asked if he knew the reason for transfer of funds to Ryte Builders’ account, the witness said there was no need for him to know that since the entire fund was meant for official maintenance.

“I did not ask because the entire fund was earmarked for the official maintenance of the office of the Chief of Air Staff. What constitutes the specifics of what the funds would be used for does not fall under my powers.

“My own as the Camp Finance Officer was to take the instructions of my director according to who is to be paid the money and I have executed as such,” the witness stated.

News Agency of Nigeria(NAN), reports that Badeh is being accused of diverting N3.9billion while serving as Chief of Air staff

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