Muhammed Abacha’s ill-health stalls trial
The trial of Mohammed Abacha, the eldest surviving son of the late Head of State Gen. Sani Abacha was yesterday stalled due to ill-health.
At the resumed hearing of the case, counsel to Abacha, Reuben Atabo, tendered a medical report in support of his oral application for adjournment.
The court was informed that Abacha took ill about four days ago and he was rushed to a hospital, where he was diagnosed to have high blood pressure and severe chest pain.
Reuben Atabo urged the court to fix a date to enable his client recuperate and attend his trial.
However, counsel to the Federal Government Daniel Enwelum, said that, he would reluctantly concede to the oral application for adjournment since it was a medical issue.
The trial judge subsequently adjourned the case to June 18, for trial.
At the last hearing of the case, Abacha’s counsel, Abdullahi Haruna, had told the court that he got to know about the arraignment ‘ by accident’, before the case was adjourned fixed for yesterday (April 29) for arraignment.
Mohammed Abacha was arraigned over a decade ago before the FCT High Court on a 123 criminal count charge, but before his plea was taken, he went on appeal.
Mohammed Abacha had attempted to foil his trial but was unsuccessful at the trial court before he proceeded to the Court of Appeal and finally to the Supreme Court where he lost again.
The January, Supreme 17, 2014 Court, in a unanimous decision dismissed Mohammed Abacha’s appeal and held that immunity did not extend beyond the tenure of office and that even if the late Head of State were alive, he could be prosecuted for a criminal offence, much less his son who was never an occupant of the office of the Head of State.
In the fresh nine-count criminal charge, the Federal Government accused Mohammed of “dishonestly receiving stolen property worth N100.38 billion “and “voluntarily assisted in concealing money.”