Despite obtaining a medical report from a UK-based hospital, Olisa Metuh’s application to travel abroad for treatment was on Thursday refused by an Abuja Division of the Federal High Court.
Mr. Metuh, a former spokesperson of the Peoples Democratic Party, is facing trial on alleged diversion of N400 million from the office of the former National Security Adviser. He asked for permission to travel in March, after appearing in court on a stretcher.
The trial judge, Okon Abang, had adjourned the matter till Thursday for ruling on the application to travel.
Delivering his ruling, Mr. Abang recalled an earlier decision of the court which refused a similar application from Mr. Metuh.
The trial judge questioned the failure of Mr. Metuh to appeal the previous decision and ruled that his court lacks jurisdiction to upturn its earlier decision.
According to lawyers representing the former Peoples Democratic Party spokesperson, Mr Metuh is suffering from spinal cord injuries and requires urgent medical attention.
The lawyers led by Onyeachi Ikpeazu, requested a prolonged adjournment to allow for what they termed proper recuperation of their client. That request was however refused by the court, resulting in the appearance of Mr. Metuh on a stretcher in February.
Mr. Abang also warned the defence team against bringing any medical report from any Nigerian hospital.
After the proceedings in February the court adjourned till March for further hearing on the matter. At the continuation of the hearing, however, Mr. Metuh’s lawyers asked the court for permission to travel abroad. This time, the defence counsel appeared with a medical report from a foreign hospital.
With Thursday’s decision, Mr Metuh is expected to appear in court on Friday for further hearing on the matter.