By Abel Daniel, Lafia
Absence of prosecuting witnesses on Thursday has stalled the trial of Yusuf Mada, the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate of Nasarawa-Eggon East constituency in 2023 elections and 29 others over alleged involvement in the vandalization of rail tracks and slippers.
NationalUpdate reports that the prosecuting counsel failed to present witnesses for trial before a Federal High Court sitting in Lafia, Nasarawa State.
The trial judge justice Afolabi Nehizena expressed dissatisfaction with the delay by the prosecuting counsel to present witnesses after about one year to commence trial of the accused.
The defense counsels pleaded witb the court to strike out the case if the prosecuting counsel fails to present the witnesses in the next adjourned date.
In her ruling, the trial judge justice Afolabi stated that the criminal case involving 30 accused persons concerning vandalisation of the rail line in Nasarawa state would be struck out if the prosecuting counsel fails to present witnesses on the next adjourned date.
The Judge therefore adjoined the case to July 21 for hearing.
Speaking to journalists, the defense counsel, Barrister Innocent Lagi regretted that the prosecuting counsel have not been able to produce witnesses after one year since the trail began in June 2021.
Lagi however noted that the idea of striking out the case as stated by the trial judge would not ensure that justice is truly served saying that a full trial that would vindicate his client of the allegation is what is appropriate
The prosecuting counsel, representing the police commissioner, Barrister Obafemi Alabi Tijani said he decided to narrow down the 10 witnesses to 3 to speed up the process.
Barrister Obafemi said that witnesses could not appear in court because they were among the officers deployed to Ekiti to monitor the governorship election.
Obafemi however assured that the witnesses would appear in the court unfailingly in the next adjourned date.