Lagos -A 40-year-old man, Adumeta Nduka, on Tuesday re-appeared before a Federal High Court in Lagos over the sale of unregistered food products.
The accused is being charged by the National Agency for Food Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) on five counts bordering on the offence.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the accused was first arraigned on Dec. 9, 2014 on the charges.
He had pleaded not guilty and Justice John Tsoho had granted him bail in the sum of N1 million with one surety in like sum.
The judge had then adjourned the case for trial.
NAN also reports that the accused had failed to show up for his trial on April 27 and on several other adjournments.
The court had consequently issued a bench warrant for his arrest on Sept. 22.
When the case was mentioned on Tuesday, counsel to the accused, Mr Oluwole Olusi, craved the indulgence of the court on behalf of his client.
He informed the court that the accused had been absent from court following an injury he sustained from a road accident.
He, therefore, implored the court to vacate the bench warrant issued against the accused, adding that the accused was now in court to stand trial.
Justice Tsoho in a short ruling held that he was satisfied with the explanation adduced by defence counsel.
Consequently, he vacated the bench warrant.
“The bench warrant issued on Sept. 22 is hereby discharged,’’ he said.
NAN reports that the prosecutor, Mr Washington Adumen, then prayed the court for the accused to be re-arraigned on the charges.
After the charge was read over to the accused, he pleaded not guilty.
The court ordered that the accused to continue to enjoy the earlier bail granted.
The judge then adjourned the case to Feb. 9 for trial.
The prosecutor had told the court that the accused committed the offence on Nov. 6, 2014.
He said that the accused engaged in the manufacturing of some food products without registration and approval from NAFDAC.
According to the prosecutor, the accused manufactured Nourish Gold Banana, Vanilla and Chocolate Custard, as well as Falcon Refined Sugar without due registration.
He said that the products were packaged and labelled at No 3, Saturday Close, Salolo in Lagos.
According to the prosecutor, the accused engaged in the sale of the unregistered products to members of the public contrary to the provision of the law.
He said that the offence contravened the provision of sections 1, 5 (a), and 17 of the Food and Drugs Act, Cap. F32, Laws of the Federation, 2004. (NAN)