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Omatseye’s N1.5b scam: Court fixes May 20 for Judgment 

Judgment in a case against Raymond Omatseye, charged with N1.5 billion contract scam, has been fixed by a Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos.
The suit, which was originally fixed for judgment on Monday, was adjourned at the instance of the court to May 20.
Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia, who has been transferred from the Lagos division of the court, is expected to return and deliver the judgment on that date.
Omatseye is a former Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA).
He is charged by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on a 27- count charge bordering on bid rigging and contract splitting.
At the last adjourned date onMarch 14, counsels representing the prosecution and defence adopted their final written addresses in court.
Counsel to the accused, Mr Edoka Onyeke, in his address urged the court to discountenance the arguments of prosecution and dismiss the charge against his client.
He had argued that the prosecution had not been able to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.
Onyeke said that out of the 27-count charge against the accused, 25 dealt strictly with the issue of approval of contract above the threshold, while the remaining two were on bid rigging.
He noted that the prosecution did not prove that exhibit PD 16, which it relied on in dealing with the issue of threshold, got to NIMASA at the time the contracts were awarded.
He urged the court to discharge his client.
The prosecutor, Mr. Godwin Obla, on the other hand, prodded the court to hold that the case of the prosecution was “as clear as daylight, and had also been proven beyond reasonable doubt”.
Obla submitted that the facts of the case spoke volumes, and that the accused, in exhibit Pd 1 and 2, clearly articulated his threshold for goods as not exceeding N2.5million and for works as not exceeding N5million.
Obla said that count 25 of the charge, which dwelt on threshold was straightforward, adding that sufficient evidence had been adduced to show that the accused awarded contracts above thresholds.
He had urged the court to so hold, and convict the accused accordingly.
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