The Federal High Court in Lagos on Thursday adjourned the trial of former Oyo State Governor, Chief Rasheed Ladoja, till March 17, 2018.
According to The Nation, Justice Mohammed Idris adjourned the case after the prosecution counsel called its fourth witness.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, re-arraigned Ladoja for allegedly converting N4.7billion from the state treasury to his personal use.
He was charged along with Waheed Akanbi on eight- count charge of money laundering and unlawful conversion of public funds.
They pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Ladoja was governor of Oyo State from May 29, 2003 to January 12, 2006 when he was impeached.
The Appeal Court in Ibadan declared the impeachment null and illegal on November 1, 2006.
The Supreme Court upheld the decision on November 11, 2009, and Ladoja returned to office on December 12, 2006.
He, however, lost a 2007 re-election bid.
The witness, Managing Director of Fountain Securities, Mr. Obakola Daisi, was led in evidence by prosecuting counsel, Mr. Oluwafemi Olabisi.
Daisi said he was the official stockbroker for Oyo State Governments’ portfolio of shares sold in 2007.
He said bidders for the portfolio included City Securities, Spring Capital, Deep trust and Mcleans Securities, adding that Mcleans emerged the preferred bidder.
The prosecutor then asked the witness if the second defendant was part of the bidding process and he replied “yes.”
The witness said an executive assistant to Ladoja, Adewale Atanda, requested that drafts be raised in the name of Fountain Securities.
Atanda had earlier testified that Ladoja allegedly bought cars for lawmakers to prevent his impeachment, adding that the former governor gave directive that Oyo’s shares be sold.
He said N634million, which was part of the commission and profit realised by stockbrokers handling the shares’ sale, were used as slush funds to prevent Ladoja’s impeachment.
The witness said the N634million was delivered to him by the stockbrokers.
Atanda said he removed N180million from the sum, which he had earlier borrowed and spent on Ladoja’s instructions during the heat of the impeachment saga.
Part of the N180million, he said, was the N80million he obtained from Wema Bank Plc, which Ladoja used to purchase 22 vehicles for Oyo State lawmakers to prevent his impeachment.
Justice Idris also fixed March 20 and 21 for continuation of trial.