Corruption charges filed against a former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Mr Godsday Orubebe by the Federal Government before the Code of Conduct Tribunal in Abuja has been reviewed.
Hence, there have been amendment which saw the number of the original counts filed against Orubebe dropped from four to one, thereby eliminating the charges that have to do with the acceptance of N70m bribe by the ex-minister.
The new count charge retained only one out of the two counts bordering on false assets declaration.
Lead prosecuting counsel, Mr. Mohammed Diri, pointed out to the Danladi Umar-led CCT on Tuesday that the amended charge was dated March 7, 2016 but filed on March 8.
He cited that the amended charge was filed in consonant with the provisions of section 214 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015.
Diri revealed that it was served on the defence some moments before the proceedings began on Tuesday.
There was no opposition of the amendment from the lead defence counsel, Mr. Selekowei Larry (SAN).
The new charge was accepted by the tribunal whereas the former ones were struck out.
The tribunal chairman also directed the fresh charge be read to the defendant.
Orubebe, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge on Tuesday.
The prosecution had accused Orubebe of not mentioning his asset at 2057, Asokoro District, Abuja when he assumed office as Minister of Niger Delta Affairs on 29 June, 2011.
His action was said to have flouted the provisions of section 15 of Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act.
The former minister was initially arraigned on November 8, 2015 before the fresh amendment to the earlier four counts.
Diri disclosed to the tribunal on Tuesday that he had three proposed prosecution witness and was willing to call them in one day.
He sought an adjournment to open the prosecution’s case.
The case is fixed for April 7 for further hearing.