Orji Kalu

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has re-arraigned the former governor of Abia, Orji Kalu and two others on a 34-count amended fraud charge.

On Tuesday, Kalu, his company, Slok Nigeria Limited and his former Commissioner for Finance, Jones Udeogo, were re-arraigned before Justice Anwuri Chikere of the Federal High Court, Abuja.

The defendants’ plea that the court should await the pending appeal by Slok before the Supreme Court failed.

Chikere had refused the defendants’ objection to their arraignment and ordered that the charge be read to them.
Kalu and others were, in the amended charge, accused of diverting about N3.2 billion from the Abia government’s treasury during Kalu’s tenure as governor.

They all pleaded not guilty to the charges and Chikere allowed them on bail on the terms attached to the bail granted them on April 30, 2008.

They had, eight years earlier been arraigned before Justice Adamu Bello, who is now retired.

The case has been adjourned to Dec. 6 for commencement of trial.

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