A convicted former Abia State governor and serving senator of the federal republic, Orji Uzor-Kalu’s hope that the Court of Appeal, Abuja may upturn his conviction suffered setback yesterday as the Court of Appeal , Abuja dismissed an appeal filed by Slok Nigeria Limited challenging the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court, Lagos which convicted former Abia State governor , Orji Uzor – Kalu.
Kalu, his company Slok and a former Director of Finance in Abia State , Jones Udeogo were convicted by Justice Mohammed Liman on December 4 last year for a N7.1 bn fraud in a criminal charge preferred against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for defrauding the Government of Abia State when Uzor – Kalu was governor for eight years using Slok Nigeria Limited.
The appellants Slok and Udeogo had approached the appellate court to set aside the judgment of the trial court for lack of jurisdiction. The respondents are the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court , Federal Republic of Nigeria , the EFCC and Uzor- Kalu.
However, the three- member panel in a judgment prepared and read by Justice Olabisi Ige on Wednesday dismissed the appeal for lacking in merit as the court held that section 98 (3) and (4) of Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015 were not applicable to the appellants’ case.
Specifically, the judge said that nothing is perversed with the decision of the trial court and that the complaint of the appellants is a non – issue.