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Court strikes out forgery charge against co-founder of Institute of Strategic Management

Court strikes out forgery charge against co-founder of Institute of Strategic Management

A Federal High Court in Lagos has struck out the three count charge of forgery preferred against the co-founder of Institute of Strategic Management Nigeria Limited, Professor Joseph Mba due to lack of diligent prosecution.
On 22 December 2015, Chief Superintendent of Police, Effiong Asuquo from the Special Fraud Unit of the Nigeria Police Force, Ikoyi, filed three count charge before the court accusing Professor Mba for stating that the name of INSTITUTE OF STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT NIGERIA LTD/GTE has been changed to INSTITUTE OF STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT which document was purportedly signed by him and one Dr Austin Uwandulu, knowing same to be fake, with intent that it may be acted upon as genuine to the prejudice of the company.
The police officer alleged further that Professor Mba forged special resolution of an extra ordinary general meeting of the institute in which meeting he stated that the following persons were appointed Directors of the company: Apostle Dr. Hayford Ikpommosa Alile, Mazi Dr Sam Ohuabunwa, Major General Abduimalik Halilu Giwa rtd, and Dr Austin Izagbo which document was purportedly signed by him and one Barrister Samuel Ojo knowing same to be false with intent that it may be acted upon as genuine.
He pleaded not guilty. Consequently he was granted bail while the case was adjourned for trial.
During the trial the Police prosecutor called one witness, and after the first witness abandoned the case.
On 28 May 2019 the presiding Judge, Ayokunle Faji, ordered that hearing notice be served on the prosecution due to their several absence from court proceedings. The same day, Professor Mba’s lawyer, Barrister Ike Uko wrote to remind the prosecution in this regard.
On the next adjourned day neither the prosecution nor witnesses were in court. Consequently after hearing Barrister Uko appearing for Professor Mba informing the court that they have complied with the order of the court on service of hearing notice on the prosecution pursuant to which a counsel from the prosecution appeared and undertook to notify counsel on the record but neither the Prosecutor nor the witness was present in court and urged the court to strike out the charge.
Justice Faji said: “The prosecution and witness being absent for five adjournments, it is hereby ordered as follows: That this charge is accordingly hereby struck out!

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