A Federal High Court in Abuja on Wednesday fixed November 22 for the arraignment of the former Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah, over an allegation of fraud while she served in the office. 

Although Oduah, who currently represents Anambra North Senatorial District at the National Assembly, was scheduled for arraignment before Justice Inyang Ekwo on Tuesday, but the proceeding could not take place due to a public holiday.

Stella Odua
However, the court on Wednesday fixed the trial for November 22 and 23.

On July 12, Justice Ekwo threatened to issue a warrant of arrest against the former minister if she failed to appear in court by the next adjourned date (Oct. 19).

The judge had given the warning after the counsel to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Hassan Liman in the alleged N5 billion trial against Oduah and eight others informed the court that Oduah and one other defendant were not in court to take their plea.

It was also learnt that the court had earlier fixed February 8 for the arraignment of the former minister.

But because she was not duly served with the court processes then, the arraignment could not go on.

Also, the matter could not hold on April 19 due to the strike by the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN).

The lawmaker is facing a fraud charge alongside others in a suit with number: FHC/ABJ/CR/316/20.

The anti-corruption agency has alleged that Oduah misappropriated public funds to the tune of N5billion while serving as Minister of Aviation.

When the matter was called in the last adjourned date, Liman, who informed that the case was scheduled for arraignment, said the anti-corruption agency had carried out the court order made on February 9.

“On Feb. 22, 2020, my lord made an order of substituted service on the 5th and 6th defendants in the trial. We have carried out the order my lord,” he had said.

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