Thursday, January 28

Metuh’s Trial: Bank Staff Says He Ran 5 Accounts

Metuh’s Trial: Bank Staff Says He Ran 5 Accounts

An official of Diamond Bank Plc, Eno-Mfon Effiong, yesterday, told the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja that the National Publicity Secretary of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, who is facing trial over alleged N400 million fraud, ran five separate accounts with the bank.

Effiong, who told the court that she was the account officer to Metuh’s firm, Destra Investment Limited, explained that the company already had a balance of N6,676,576 in its account, prior to the date the Office of the National Security Adviser, ONSA, credited it with N400 million on November 24, 2014.

The witness, who testified as the PW-3 yesterday, said she was not surprised by “the credit inflows” into the account, 0040437573, considering that both Metuh and his firm were regarded by the bank as “high network customers.”
She explained that high network customers were those that have high credit inflow into their accounts, saying “this is usually because the person is either a captain of industry, a high earning individual or an established businessman.”

Effiong told the court that she had been managing Destra’s account since it was opened on February 10, 2013.
Meanwhile, a move by the prosecuting counsel, Mr. Sylvanus Tahir to tender the bank account details and correspondence between Diamond Bank and Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, pertaining to the financial status of the firm, was opposed by Metuh’s lawyer, Mr. Emeka Etiaba (SAN).

Etiaba complained that some of the documents did not fulfill the provisions of the Evidence Act as they were not tendered through those that made them.
However, Justice Okon Abang dismissed the objection, stressing that the said error did not affect the probative value or weight of the evidence contained in the document.
Consequently, the court admitted the letters EFCC wrote to Diamond Bank, the bank’s response and a Certificate of Identification, dated January 11, 2015, signed by one Matilda Obigho of Compliance Department of the bank, into evidence.

Also, application for variation of the bail conditions, imposed on Metuh January 19, was moved in court yesterday by Mr. Etiaba.
He pleaded with the court to vary some of the terms, especially the aspect that made it mandatory that his sureties must own landed properties at the Maitama district of Abuja.

Delivering his bench ruling yesterday, Justice Abang said he was minded to exercise his discretion in favour of the defendant.
Consequently, the court modified the bail conditions and held that the proposed sureties should be owners of verifiable landed properties in any district of the Federal Capital Territory.

The court, however, refused to cancel the aspect of the conditions that gave EFCC the nod to verify and confirm that Metuh has fulfilled the bail conditions.

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