Metuh files fresh application for foreign treatment

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A former National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Mr. Olisa Metuh, has filed a fresh application before the Federal High Court in Abuja, where he is being prosecuted on money laundering charges, requesting permission to be allowed to travel abroad for medical treatment.

SUNDAY PUNCH learnt on Saturday that Metuh filed the fresh application, accompanied by an affidavit of urgency on February 26, 2018.

The affidavit of urgency was said to have sought a speedy hearing of the application.

His earlier application, seeking similar prayer for permission to travel abroad on health grounds, was dismissed by the court on May 25, 2016.

He did not appeal against the court’s ruling dismissing his previous application for foreign medical trip 21 months ago.

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Metuh and his company, Destra Investments Limited, are being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on seven counts of money laundering, partly involving the sum of N400m which they allegedly received from the Office of the National Security Adviser, under the leadership of the then NSA, Sambo Dasuki, in 2014.

The charges also include the allegations that the ex-PDP spokesperson transacted with $2m cash which was said to be above the threshold of cash payment prescribed by the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act.

EFCC has since February 9, 2016, closed its case with eight witnesses, and Metuh, has, so far, called nine defence witnesses.

He has since been attending his trial until recently when he started absenting himself from court on the excuse of ill health.

But Metuh, by his fresh application, is seeking an order of the court releasing his passport, which was seized as part of his bail conditions, to enable him to travel to the United Kingdom for “urgent” medical treatment.

It was learnt that the EFCC opposed the application.

According to the sources, the EFCC, through its counsel, Mr. Sylvanus Tahir, contended that Metuh’s appearance on a stretcher on February 5 was a “script” acted to curry the favour of the court and “whip up public sympathy.”

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