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Former Aviation Minister’s Arraignment Delayed Due to Defendants’ Absence

The planned arraignment of former Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, his brother Ahmad Sirika, and their company, Enginos Nigeria Limited, before a Federal Capital Territory High Court in Garki, Abuja, faced a setback on Monday as the defendants failed to appear, causing a delay in proceedings.

According to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission’s (EFCC) lawyer, O.A. Atolagbe, the defendants’ counsel requested an adjournment as the defendants were not present in court and had not been served with the charge. Atolagbe informed the court that the defendants were out of the city and unable to attend the session.

Apologizing for their absence, the defendants’ counsel, Olaniyi Anjorin, expressed regret over the situation.

Consequently, Justice Suleiman Belgore rescheduled the arraignment for May 23 to allow for the defendants’ presence.

The charges against Sirika, his brother, and their company amount to an alleged fraud totaling N19.4 billion related to various aviation ministry contracts. The EFCC alleges that Sirika abused his position to favor his brother’s company in the awarding of contracts.

The delay in the arraignment adds another layer of complexity to the ongoing legal battle involving the former minister and his associates, underscoring the seriousness of the allegations.

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