A Federal High Court in Abuja has ruled that the trial of ex-spokesman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Olisa Metuh will continue in his absence following his alleged refusal to further attend proceedings.
AFRIPOST recalls that Chief Olisa Metuh collapsed in court on Monday while walking to the dock for cross examination and was rushed to the hospital for medical attention.
The Nation reports that court also ordered that the General Manager of a private television station, Channels Television, Abuja and the anchor of its daily Sunrise programme, Mrs. Maope Ogun-Yusuf should attend court on May 25 at 9am to show cause why they should not be compelled to produce the master tape of the recording of the programme aired on May 22 this year.
Justice Okon Abang made the orders on Wednesday while ruling on applications by Metuh’s lawyer, Emeka Etiaba (SAN) and prosecution lawyer, Sylvanus Tahir.
Etiaba had, at the resumed proceedings in the case on Tuesday (May 22), told the court that although his witnesses were in court and ready to testify, but that his client was absent in view of the incident of the previous day.
Etiaba said his client was on admission at the intensive care unit of the National Hospital, Abuja, where he was allegedly rushed to after he collapsed in court on May 21.
He consequently applied for adjournment until when his client would be fit to attend court.
The application, though supported by the second defence lawyer, Tochukwu Onwugbufor (SAN), was rejected by Tahir, who insisted that trial should go on in Metuh’s absence on the grounds that his lawyer did not provide any evidence to support his claim.
Tahir equally complained about some alleged prejudicial statements purportedly made by a lawyer in the defence team, identified as Ben Chuck Nwosu, in relation to the pending trial, while he appeared on May 22, 2018 in Channels TV’s Sunrise Daily.
He applied that the station’s Managing Director and the programme’s anchor be summoned to produce the recording of the programme unedited.
Metuh, who is currently conducting his defence and was to call his 11th witness at the resumption of proceedings on May 21, slumped in court while making his way into the dock in defiance of the court’s earlier directive that he should not bother to move into the dock.