Ladi Adebutu, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate for governor in Ogun State during the 2023 elections, has been charged with allegedly Criminal conspiracy, vote buying at the March 18 governorship election.
Nine other PDP members were also accused in a case brought by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice before an Ogun State High Court in Abeokuta.
The government also accused Zenith Bank and two of its top executives in a separate lawsuit it brought before the Federal High Court in Abeokuta for allegedly helping Mr. Ladi Adebutu commit the alleged crime.
The two suits were filed on Thursday, 2 June, by the Director , Public Prosecution of the Federation , M. B. Abubakar; Aderonke Imana, an assistant chief state counsel, and Sani Bagudu, a senior counsel at the Department of Public Prosecution of the Federation, on behalf of the AGF and Minister of Justice.
Charged alongside Mr Adebutu before the state high court in Abeokuta are Ogunbona Hammed, Tiamiyu Waliu, Egunsola Owolabi and Sanni Adejoke.
The other defendants are Dare Ogunleye, Dare Adeoye, Dayo Fashina, Wasiu Enololobo, and Malik Akawo.
According to the notice filed by the prosecution, Ladi Adebutu and four of the other defendants are currently at large.
In the suit before the Ogun State High Court, the federal government charged Mr Adebutu and the fifth defendant, Adejoke Sanni, with three counts of alleged criminal conspiracy, bribery and undue influence, while the eight others were charged only with the first two counts.
“That you Oladipupo Olatunde Adebuti (now at large), Adult Male of Kessington House, Iperu, Ogun State between February-March, 2023 at Ogun State within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did provide 200,000 prepaid verve cards loaded with N10,000 (ten thousand naira) which had inscribed on them ‘Dame Caroline Oladuni Adebutu Memorial Endorsement Scheme for less privileged” for the purpose of corruptly influencing votes to vote for PDP Candidates (Including yourself) during the Gubernatorial and State Assembly elections in Ogun state and you thereby committed an offence,” the charge reads in part.