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Ondo Speaker, Two Others Arraigned Over Alleged N2.4m Fraud



Bamidele Oloyelogun

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Tuesday, arraigned the Speaker of the Ondo State House of Assembly, Bamidele Oloyelogun, over fraud allegations.

Oloyelogun was arraigned alongside a lawmaker representing the Akoko South West Constituency II, Felemu Bankole, and a staff of the assembly, Segun Bankole.

Recall that a former Deputy Speaker of the Assembly, Iroju Ogundeji, had petitioned the EFCC, alleging that the defendants conspired to share N2.4 million meant for a seminar in Lagos that they never attended.

However, the petitioner alleged that no such seminar was organized and that the N2.4 million released by the state ministry of finance went to private pockets.

The defendants pleaded not guilty to the two-count charge preferred against them.

After the plea, EFCC counsel, Kingsley Kudus, prayed the court to remand the defendants to a correctional facility.

However, counsel to the defendants, Femi Emodamore, opposed the prosecutor’s prayer and urged the court to allow his clients to remain on administrative bail, stating that the speaker is experiencing health challenges and needed urgent medical attention.

Emodamore also asked the court to caution the nominal complainant, Ogundeji, for allegedly sending provocative messages to the speaker.

In his ruling, the presiding judge, Adegboyega Adebusoye, held that the defendants should continue to enjoy their administrative bail till the next hearing.

The judge, therefore, adjourned the matter to May 18 for trial to commence.