Abah Abah Trial – Civil Claimant Counsel Awaits Clearance

The matter was adjourned to March 25, 2015, to also enable him produce the list of witnesses.

The trial at the Yaounde-based Special Criminal Court, SCC, of the former Director of Taxes, Polycarpe Abah Abah on charges of defrauding a cooperative and the State of Cameroon of landed property worth FCFA 1.8 billion, is yet to take off in earnest.

At the hearing on Monday, March 9, 2015, the lead judge, Justice Nyoh Matthias, who was assisted by Justices Tagiyin and Adebada with Justice Tagim as Aocate General, sought to know if Barrister Nchankou Njindam, standing in for the civil claimant, had received the necessary authorisation. He responded that the process was underway as the Minister of Finance had already written to the Minister of Justice. Nchankou added that he expected the decision to be out in about a week’s time.

Justice then ruled that the trial be adjourned to March 25, 2015, at 8 a.m. to enable Barrister Nchankou Njindam get the paper and also present his list of witnesses. Earlier, Mr Justice Nyoh urged the lead counsel for the defence, Barrister Antoine Marcel Mong, to reduce his list of witnesses from 13 to eight as the prosecution had seven witnesses. He explained that having too many witnesses presented the risk of repetition. Barrister Mong promptly agreed to the request.

It would be recalled that Polycarpe Abah Abah on Wednesday, February 18, 2015, appeared before the SCC to deny fresh charges of embezzlement of public funds. The former Director of Taxes and Minister of Finance and the Economy, who is already serving time at the Yaounde Secondary Prison for attempted jail break and embezzlement of public funds, is accused by Batock Dikanda Daniel and a former journalist, now parliamentarian, William Mandio and the State of Cameroon, of fraudulently obtaining landed property belonging to a cooperative and the State of Cameroon worth FCFA 1.8 billion. The crime was allegedly committed between 1998 and 2005 when Polycarpe Abah Abah was Director of Taxes.

Source : Cameroon Tribune

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