The trial of for­mer Benue State Governor Gabriel Suswam was stalled on Tuesday at a Federal High Court, Abuja, due to his continued detention by the Department of State Services (DSS) for al­leged ownership of arms found at the premises of an Abuja-based property company.
When the matter came up before Justice Ahmed Mohammed, counsel to Suswam, Chief Joseph Daudu, said that his cli­ent’s absence in court was beyond his control.
Daudu said: “The ab­sence of the defendant is due to no fault of his. On February 26, he was invited by the DSS and since then he has been kept in detention without trial. No effort has been made to take him for trial to state the allegations against him.
“The first defendant is being prosecuted by Fed­eral Government and the last place he was seen is with an agent of Federal Government.
“The Federal Govern­ment is in the best posi­tion to say why he is not here. We don’t know what has happened to him. It is not in disrespect to this court that he is not here. The absence is not willful or deliberate,” Daudu said.
The prosecution coun­sel, Mr A. O. Afolabi, said that he had no objection, though, he said the two agencies belong to the Federal Government, but the EFCC was only in­volved in his prosecution and not in Suswam’s de­tention.