EFCC Arraigns Ondo House Of Assembly Speaker, 2 Others For Alleged Fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned the Speaker of the Ondo State House of Assembly, Hon. Bamidele Oloyeloogun, and two others before the State High Court sitting in Akure for alleged fraud.

The defendants pleaded not guilty to the allegations levelled against them. Also arraigned along with the speaker is a lawmaker representing Akoko South/West Constituency 1, Felemu Bankole, and Segun Oyadeyi Bankole, a civil servant.

During the court proceeding, counsel to the EFCC, Kingsley Kudus, urged the court to remand the defendants at the Olokuta Correctional Facility in Akure. He argued that though they had pleaded not guilty, the defendants were still in the hands of the court while the trial continued.

However, the defendants’ counsel, Femi Emodamori, said he was fully prepared for the commencement and continuation of the trial. He prayed to the court to strike out EFCC’s prayer for remand, stating that the administrative bail application on the defendants was still active.

He explained that the second defendant, Oleyeloogun, was having a health challenge that needed urgent medical attention.

In response, Justice Adegboyega Adebusoye asked the defendants to be granted administrative bail till the next hearing. He adjourned the case till the 18th of May 2023 for a proper hearing.

During the hearing, Emodamori also asked the court to caution the nominal complainant, Hon. Iroju Ogundeji, the State’s former Deputy Speaker in the case, for allegedly sending annoying messages to the current Speaker.

He warned that if Ogundeji did not desist from such actions, he would be prosecuted.

The case has significant implications for the political climate in Ondo State, as the Speaker is a high-ranking member of the state’s legislative assembly.

The allegations levelled against him and the other defendants are serious, and the outcome of the trial could have far-reaching consequences.

The EFCC’s decision to arraign the defendants suggests that there is credible evidence against them, and the trial will be closely watched by the public and political observers.

The defendants’ plea of not guilty means that the burden of proof is on the prosecution to establish their guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

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