Friday, 24 May 2013
Supreme Court Dismisses Fani-Kayode’s Appeal
The Supreme Court yesterday dismissed the appeal filed by former aviation minister, Mr. Femi Fani-Kayode, challenging the admissibility of computer-generated Statement of Accounts under the old Evidence Act.
According to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission ( EFCC), the appeal followed an objection raised at the Federal High Court by Mr. Ladi Williams (SAN), counsel to Fani-Kayode, as to the admissibility of the computer generated Statement of Accounts of the former minister.
The objection was sustained by the trial court, but the Court of Appeal set aside the decision of that court, which was presided over by Justice A. R. Mohammed, and admitted the Statement of Accounts in evidence.
Fani-Kayode appealed against the decision of the Court of Appeal to the Supreme Court, but while the matter was pending there, the Evidence Act was amended and Computer-Generated Bank Statements were made clearly admissible by Section 84 of the new Evidence Act. At the same time, the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, in exercising his administrative powers, transferred Justice Mohammed from the Lagos Division of the Federal High Court to the Enugu Division. The matter was then re-assigned to Justice Binta Nyako.
Through its counsel, Mr. Festus Keyamo, the EFCC then filed a motion to dismiss the appeal before the Supreme Court ,arguing that the appeal has become academic in that the proceedings that gave rise to the appeal no longer exists.
Yesterday, the Supreme Court, after taking oral arguments from Mr. Williams and Mr. Keyamo, agreed that the appeal had indeed become academic in that the proceedings that gave rise to the appeal have become spent.
The Court directed Mr. Williams (SAN) to withdraw the appeal on those grounds, and Mr. Fani-Kayode was directed to go back to Justice Nyako to face his trial.
The matter will now be heard on October 10, 2012.