Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Abuja, on Friday, adjourned the trial of Faisal Abdulrasheed Maina until December 8.
This followed the withdrawal of his lawyer, Francis Oransanye.
Faisal is the son of Abdulrashed Maina, former chairman of Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT)
In absence of legal representation, prosecution counsel, M. S. Abubakar asked the court to foreclose Faisal’s right for a defence to the testimonies against him.
The judge, while granting the prayer, noted that Faisal was “given the same opportunity to defend same but failed to take advantage of the said opportunity”.
He gave prosecution seven days from today to file its written address.
The third prosecution witness in Faisal’s trial, Rouqayya Ibrahim, a Principal Detective Superintendent (PDS) with Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had testified.
Ibrahim revealed that the defendant made under-declaration of assets in his Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) form as well as contradictory statements to the EFCC and the court, concerning the registration of the company he allegedly used in siphoning N58million.
Faisal was not in court, and did not send legal representation in the four consecutive adjournments after his release on bail November 26, 2019.
On November 18, 2020, Justice Abang revoked his bail, issued a bench warrant against him and ruled that his trial will continue in his absence.
The judge ordered his surety, Umar Galadima, the House of Representatives representing Kaura Namoda constituency of Zamfara, to appear in court and explain why he should not forfeit his N60million bail bond for failing to produce the Faisal in court.
Today, his lawyer, M. E. Sheriff, asked for a short adjournment to study the prosecution’s counter-affidavit and file an appropriate response.
Faisal is being prosecuted by the EFCC on a three-count charge of false declaration of assets and money laundering to the tune of N58 million.