The Federal High Court in Lagos dismissed the applications seeking a stay of proceedings in the alleged N7.65bn fraud trial of a former Governor of Abia State, Orji Kalu.
Kalu’s firm, Slok Nigeria Limited; and Ude Udeogu, who are co-defendants with the ex-governor in the criminal case, filed applications seeking a stay of proceedings.
Though the case was adjourned last week for the defendants to open their defence, they urged the court to further stay proceedings pending the outcome of some appeals that they filed.
Counsel representing Kalu’s firm, K. C. Nwofor told the judge that he had filed an appeal to challenge the dismissal of his client’s no-case submission.
He said he was also challenging the jurisdiction of Justice Mohammed Idris to continue hearing the case after he the judge had been elevated to the Court of Appeal.
Kalu is being tried alongside his company, Slok Nigeria Limited and Ude Udeogu who served as Director of Finance and Account at the Abia State Government House during his tenure as the governor of the state.
The ex-governor was accused of diverting state funds into the account of Slok Nigeria Limited, a company, the EFCC claimed was owned by Kalu and his family members.