Erisco Foods' court case vs Chioma Okoli delayed in court over judge's absence

The trial is subsequently fixed for June 19 on the council agreement.

Okoli is being charged over her online commentary on Erisco Foods Limited’s tomato paste [Channels Television]

The matter, fixed for trial, could not proceed because the trial judge, Justice Peter Lifu, went on an official assignment.

Although Justice Lifu sat today, he left for a conference after attending to some cases. The trial was subsequently fixed for June 19 on the counsels' agreement.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Okoli was, on May 31, admitted to ₦5 million bail with two sureties after spending a few days in a correctional centre following her arraignment on two counts on May 28.

NAN reports that Okoli is being charged over her online commentary on Erisco Foods Limited’s tomato paste which the police alleged violated the Cybercrimes Act of 2015. She pleaded not guilty to all the counts.

The police had alleged that initial investigations revealed significant evidence suggesting Okoli’s involvement in breaking existing laws, especially concerning the appropriate use of cyberspace.

On September 17, 2023, Okoli shared a Facebook post stating that she purchased Nagiko Tomato Mix from Erisco Foods, the day before and found it utterly sugary. She mentioned that she normally buys Gino or Sonia brands, but they were out of stock.

Her post generated reactions and forced the management of the company to involve the police.

The controversy also prompted scrutiny of the product’s registration, prompting the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) to inspect the Erisco Foods’ Nagiko Tomato Mix’s registration in 2021.

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