The trial of a judiciary staff, Mrs. Udeme Ekpo-Uko, who allegedly embezzled twelve million naira belonging to the State Government could not proceed following the inability of the defense counsel to continue with the cross examination of the Prosecution Witness, when the matter came up on Tuesday.
AKBC Judiciary Correspondent Harrison Essien reports that the Defense counsel, Barrister Anselem Eyo told the court that he would not attend to the case due to his ill-health.
The cross examination of the First Prosecution Witness, Mr. Okon Edet Eyo started in November 2015, when he tendered more than twenty exhibits of receipts of various sums of money, the accused person, Mrs Ekpo-Uko allegedly signed for an received on behalf of the State Government, as cashier in the Probate Office of the Judiciary, without remitting same to government coffers.
Since then, Mr. Eyo, a retired Head of Audit Unit in the State Judiciary, has been on cross examination by the Defense Counsel, Barrister Anselem Eyo.
The case took another dimension on Tuesday, when Barrister Eyo informed the court that he was sick, hence, would not be able to further cross examine the witness.
The development did not go down well with the prosecution Counsel, Barrister F. J. Itim, who expressed displeasure over under delay in the prosecution of the matter, as evidenced in the defense’ cross examination of a witness for one year.
He asked the court to stop Barrister Eyo from unnecessary delay in the cross-examination of the prosecution witness.
The court however granted the defense an adjournment to enable their counsel to attend to his medical challenges.
The accused person, Mrs Udeme Ekpo-Uko, who is standing trial for stealing and receiving twelve million naira of public funds under fraudulent activities, was present in court.
The continuation of cross examination of the prosecution witness has been adjourned to second of November.