FG begins trial of blogger who accused Fashola of writing presidential election tribunal judgment

Babatunde Fashola
Babatunde Fashola

The Federal Government has begun the trial of a blogger Victor Ibezim who alleged that ex-minister of works and housing Babatunde Fashola authored the judgments of the presidential election petition court (PEPC).

Last year, the PEPC dismissed petitions made by the Labour Party (LP), the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and others and upheld the victory of President Bola Tinubu.

Mr Ibezim, who was alleged to be one of three persons linked to publications that Fashola prepared the judgment made by the court, was arraigned before Justice Bolaji Olajuwon of a Federal High Court in Abuja on a six-count charge.

The amended charge marked FHC/ABJ/CR/434/2023 and dated October 17, 2023, was filed on October 18, 2023 by the Inspector-General of Police.

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Ibezim, who is the sole defendant, is charged with criminal conspiracy, cyber stalking, and defamation among others.

Justice Olajuwon fixed April 15 for continuation of trial.

In the charge, Ibezim with Jackson Udeh, Nnamdi Emmanuel Ibezim and reportera.ng (corporate body) now at large on or about August 5, 2023 in Abuja, were alleged to have committed the offence.

They were alleged to have criminally conspired and jointly “agreed to publish a defamatory statement of false allegations in their online social media, the reportera.ng news, against His Excellency Babatunde Raji Fashola SAN, CON, without justification.”

The alleged offence is said to be punishable under Section 27(1)(b) of the Cybercrime Prohibition, Prevention Act 2015, among other counts.