By Wandoo Sombo/Mabel Yakubu
Abuja – The Federal High Court Abuja, has fixed Feb. 23 to rule on an application to subpoena the former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki to testify in the ongoing trial of former PDP spokesman, Olisah Metuh.
The court would also rule on whether or not to order the release of Metuh’s international passport to enable him travel abroad for medical treatment.
The trial judge, Justice Okon Abang, fixed the ruling on Thursday after listening to arguments of counsel to both parties.
Counsel to Metuh, Mr Onyeachi Ikpeazu (SAN) said that Dasuki’s testimony in the matter was very crucial.
According to him, Dasuki is an official person who exercises official position and his presence will enable him give evidence in respect to the document tendered by the prosecution.
He added that Dasuki was currently in custody of the DSS and it was impossible for the defence team to reach him.
Ikpeazu said that the defence was of the view that it was only the court that had the authority to compel his appearance in court.
On the application to release Metuh’s international passport to enable him seek treatment abroad, Ikpeazu told the court that his ailment was getting worse.
According to him, medical reports showed that he cannot be treated in Nigeria and he had been referred abroad to seek further treatment.
The counsel said that he was ready to put his practice licence on the line for the court to allow his client get the necessary treatment abroad and come back to face his trial in good health.
The prosecuting counsel, Mr Sylvanus Tahir raised no objection to the application for Dasuki to be subpoenaed; saying it was an administrative matter that could have been handled in chambers.
He ,however, opposed the application for the release of Metuh’s international passport and prayed the court to dismiss it and to rather maintain the order of an accelerated trial.
Tahir said that rather than grant the application, the court should sustain the tempo of a speedy trial so as to quickly give judgment.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that Metuh who is on trial over alleged N400million money laundering charges, had asked the court to subpoena Dasuki saying his testimony was essential to his defence.
Metuh, had called six witnesses in his defence, but said that Dasuki had to testify as well since the case against him was that he collected the money in question from Dasuki’s office.(