Okai Austin

FLASH | ‘Strike Out This Worthless Paper’, Austin Okai’s Lawyer Tells Court

The Federal High Court, Lokoja, on Wednesday adjourned till 31st May 2017 in the ongoing trial of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP Youth Leader, blogger and social activist blogger, Comrade Austin Usman Okai to enable the presiding judge rule on the motion served by the prosecuting counsel and the argument by the defence counsel, Mr J.S. Okutepa, SAN.

At the hearing, the prosecution counsel had attempted to file a motion which according to him was an amendment to the earlier charges brought before the court against the defendant, Mr Austin Usman Okai.

But in his counter argument, Mr Okutepa, SAN argued that the prosecuting counsel has no power to amend a motion without the approval of the court.

“The prosecuting counsel is unqualified to amend the charge, section 216 of the administration of criminal act stated clearly how a charge can be amended.

“How can a police man who is charged with the responsibility of protecting the life and property of citizens turn himself to be a judge, my lordship there are no charges to amend.” he submitted.

Okutepa, SAN therefore prayed the presiding judge to “strike out this worthless paper they titled amended charges.”

Earlier, the defence counsel informed the court that the life of his client is been threatened by agents of the state.

According to him, the matter had become necessary in view of the importance of the life of his client. “I am reporting to my Lordship that the life of my client is been threatened by some of the Governor’s aides on both their Twitter and Facebook accounts. We’ve written a petition to the Inspector General of Police and copied the State Commissioner of Police and other relevant security agencies in the state”, he said.

He therefore submitted that his client be granted leave not to appear in court physically until trial is ready to commence.

The case was adjourned to the 31st of May 2017 for ruling on the motions.

The court proceeding was witnessed supporters of the defendant, Mr. Okai who showed up in the court premises as early as 8am to witness the court proceedings.

Mr. Okai is facing trial over comments he allegedly made on Facebook which were said to be critical of the Kogi State governor Yahaya Bello and his administration.

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