Ombatse: Absence of witness stalls hearing on killing of 84 in Nasarawa

The absence of a witness has stalled the hearing on the killing of 84 security personnel who were allegedly murdered by the outlawed Ombatse cult group in Alakyo Village of Nasarawa State.

Recall reports that 74 operatives of the Nigeria Police Force and 10 personnel of Department of State Security Service were allegedly murdered by the Ombatse militia in Alakyo village on May 7, 2013.

Our correspondent also recalled that one Enugu Baba, a police corporal and three others are also accused of having a connection to the killings of the security personnel.

Addressing the High Court 1 on Wednesday in Lafia, Williams Akika, the prosecuting counsel said that the third witness was out of the country.

The prosecuting counsel, however, requested for an adjournment to enable them to present the witness as soon as he returns.

On his part, Emmanuel Kuza, defence counsel expressed frustration over what he described, as “undue delay” by the prosecuting counsel.

He added that the case had suffered unnecessary delay at the instance of the prosecuting counsel.

He said that the defendants had been in detention since 2013 without much progress being made on the case.

According to him, the persecuting counsel had only called two witnesses since 2013.

He added that the court had opposed the bail application of the defendants despite their ill health.

He said that the court should reconsider their bail application to enable the defendants who are critically ill seek medical care.

After listening to their arguments, Justice Suleiman Dikko, Chief Judge of the state who is the presiding judge, adjourned the matter to November 4 for the continuation of hearing.

The CJ also admonished the prosecuting counsel to ensure that he presents the witness on the adjourned date.

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