Court Overrules Defence Objection in Organ Harvesting Case Involving Alliance Hospital

The High Court in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, has rejected the defence’s objection filed by the defence team of Dr. Christopher Otabor, the Managing Director of Alliance Hospital and Services Ltd in Abuja, and three other hospital staff members, in relation to the alleged organ harvesting case.

The defense had raised an objection to a crucial statement from the investigation being admitted, but the court ultimately sided with the prosecution.

In a statement released by NAPTIP’s Communication Officer, Adekoye Vincent, and provided to Africa Health Report (AHR) on Wednesday, it was reported that the initial witness to testify on Tuesday was Lanre Akande, a businessman from Abuja. Akande explained to the Court how the accused recruiter, Olorunlaye, asked to use his account to transfer money to someone. Akande agreed, and a total of N500,000 was sent through his account to that individual.

Akande informed the Court that after some time, when he attempted to conduct a transaction from the same account, he was informed that the account had been frozen due to a letter from NAPTIP.

Following this, the Lead Prosecution Counsel and Director of Legal and Prosecution Department at NAPTIP, Mr. Hassan Hamis Tahir, called upon the witness, Mr. Liman Yusuf Shehu, to provide testimony.

The defense’s objection, based on the discretionary use of the term “may” in the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015, was overruled by Justice Ogbonnaya. The judge emphasized that the statement’s voluntariness and relevance met legal requirements, making it admissible as evidence.

The case, which has been ongoing since allegations surfaced in early 2023, involves Dr. Otabor and staff members Emmanuel Muyiwa Olorunlaye, Chikaodili Ugochukwu, and Dr. Aremu Abayomi. They face 11 counts of alleged involvement in the illegal harvesting of kidneys from three young males, including two minors, without parental consent.

The fathers of the victims, Salaudeen Sulaimon Adedoyin and Musa Yahaya, previously testified, asserting they did not consent to the operations.

The court has adjourned the case to July 2 for the hearing of the defense’s no-case submission following the close of the prosecution’s case.


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