Justice Adebukola Banjoko: How she beat a corrupt system & delay tactics to jail two ex-governors- Joshua Dariye and Jolly Ndame

Chief Looters in the country have perfected the act of delay tactics. They can keep a case in court for 20years. As their legal team play the judicial marathon these political looters can contest and win elections – ask Ekiti state Governor Fayoshe (am not suggesting anything though)
Justice Adebukola was tossed around and delayed as she tried to finalize two high profile cases (ex-Governors Dariye and Ndame.) brought before her court

High profile corruption trials in Nigeria follow the same text book methods to delay cases;
Firstly bail is requested and usually granted. The court will order that the accused person’s International Passport be seized.

The defense counsel will challenge the court’s jurisdiction to adjudicate the case.

They may find flimsy excuses to ask for a stay of proceedings. (Find legal reasons to suspend the case temporarily)

Another strategy is to accuse the judge of bias and write a petition demanding that the case be transferred to another judge.

An accused can also change counsel, and the new lawyer will ask for an adjournment to enable him study the casefile having just received it.
After a while, the accused will apply for the release of his International Passport to enable him travel abroad for medical treatment
The accused can also begin a campaign of political persecution, – AKA Dino Melaye

With time, evidence gets muddled up, witnesses become disillusioned, scared, uncooperative or unavailable.
The prosecution gets fatigued or become distracted by new cases. Public and media indifference follow as the case goes into hibernation.The trial judge may retire, be transferred to another division or elevated to a higher court,

Deliberately or coincidentally, and the accused persons will be re-arraigned before another judge. Then repeat the entire process.

These corrupt leaders can afford to keep the case in court for as long as possible, some of them are in the Senate earning lush funds or are even richer than their state.

Joshua Dariye – Former Governor Plateau state, Serving Senator representing Plateau central

Arraigned by EFCC in 2007 on A 21 count charge for laundering 1.62billion ecological funds

Presiding Judge – Justice Adebukola Banjoko of the Federal Capital Territory High Court

The Legal dance kicked off …

He pleaded not guilty, and the trial judge fixed November 13, 2007

Mr. Dariye challenged the jurisdiction and competence of the court to try him, saying he should be tried in Plateau his home state.

His application was dismissed on December 13, 2007, He appealed and lost, then proceeded to the Supreme Court, which has now directed him to face trial. (Take note the corruption trial has not started, the journey from high court to appeal and Supreme Court is simply to squash the charges against him)
By the time the Supreme Court asked him to go and face trial, the case had been delayed for almost 9years

The delay tactics continued ….
No show in court due to ill health
His lawyer being away for a sudden emergency during a court date.
Then he claimed that he needed a new Judge as the trial judge Justice Banjoko was biased against him.
Somewhere along the line, he became a senator armed with extra lush funds to keep his lawyers busy.
Mr. Dariye then got a new lawyer; – former Attorney General of the Federation, Kanu Agabi, who asked for the adjournment to enable him get acquainted with the case.
“I am appealing for the very last time and beg you on my knees. I have also pleaded with Rotimi Jacobs, grant us one more adjournment to get acquainted with the case,” Mr. Agabi said.
Prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Jacobs, told the court that the case had lingered for so long.
Justice Adebukola Banjoko- sat through the adjournments and delays for 11years without losing her cool
She granted the adjournment in the interest of justice.
Yesterday, the judicial dance came to an end as she slammed him a 14 year jail sentence after examining damning evidence against him.

Rev Jolly Nyame former Governor of Taraba state also took Justice Adebukola Banjoko on a long ride.
Mr. Nyame is facing a 41-count charge of misappropriation of state funds to the tune of N1.64 billion

He had tried to quash the charges preferred against him as he filed an application on October 10, 2007 to that effect. In the application, he claimed that there was no prima facie case against him and for want of jurisdiction. Justice Banjoko dismissed the application for lacking in merit.
However, Nyame proceeded to the Appeal Court, which equally dismissed the application on February 24, 2010. He further went to the Supreme Court to seek for the same relief.

The delayed tactics continued…
Time was needed to study evidence
The prosecution did not have any evidence- no case submission
Their witnesses were not available.
A new counsel needed time to study the case.
Adjournment, after Adjournment, Justice Banjoko kept her cool.
Allowed them to dance around.
Then slammed down her hammer to put Nyame away 14years on may 30th ….

But guess what, #ThisisNigeria,
They might challenge her ruling all the way to the Supreme Court
There is money to spend – in billions.
Even if they don’t appeal. They would be out of jail in 2years under mysterious circumstances.

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