A High Court sitting in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, on Tuesday, joined Ms Anwan Bassey Akpan as the 3rd accused to the suit on Iniubong Umoren’s murder case.
The court also issued a warrant compelling the Correctional Service to produce the 3rd accused in court on Thursday, November 4, 2021.
The order followed her absence in court at the resumed hearing after she was arrested and detained for allegedly obstructing the arrest of her brother, Uduak Akpan, the first accused in the case.
Uduak Akpan is standing trial alongside his father, Frank Akpan who was listed as the second accused over the murder of Iniubong Umoren, a graduate of Philosophy, University of Uyo, who was said to have been lured, raped and killed in the guise of offering her a job.
The State Solicitor-General, Christopher. J. Udoh had during the proceedings prayed the Court to issue the production warrant since the third accused person was not in court.
He also informed the Court that the initial charge filed in June has been substituted with an amended suit filed on October 29, 2021, in order to join the third accused person who was arrested recently.
The two Counsels to the defendants in the matter, Emms Ekongson and Samson Adula, however, did not raise any objection to the prayers by the prosecution Counsels.
Justice Nkanang, who is just resuming in the court after the former justice, Bennett Illaumo was substituted also ordered that a witness summon be served to the Chairman Uruan Local Government Council, Surv. Iniobong Ekpenyong at his Ewet Housing Uyo and one Kufre Michael Effiong of No 16 Esuene Street, Uyo.
The new judge who promised to follow the trial dates of his predecessor adjourned the case to November 4, 2021, for plea taking and for pre-trial.
Speaking with newsmen in the Court premises, former Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Barr. Uwemedimo Nwoko (SAN), expressed happiness over the seriousness that the state government has attached to the case.
Nwoko also expressed happiness that the sister of the first accused person (Uduak Abasi Akpan) who had created some level of complications in the process of apprehending the culprit has also been arrested and charged.
Nwoko said: “This case has a great deal of public interest and I am representing the interest of Ati Annang Socio-cultural organization, from the ethic extraction where the deceased came from. We are going to follow up on the proceedings up to the end of the matter.
“I am very happy today that His Lordship, the new trial Judge who is just resuming in this court has done something very unique.
One, he has decided to sustain all the dates that his predecessor adjourned the case before, which is about 10-days.
“Two, we now have the principal accused person, with the father, and the sister charged together for complicity in the death of our dear sister Iniubong Umoren. Right now the Prosecution team is led by one of the best, the Solicitor General of the state.
” And that shows the level of seriousness that the government is attaching to this matter and as a socio-cultural organization also representing the family of the deceased, we are interested in getting to the bottom of the case.
“Good enough there is an amendment to the charge. The initial charge carried two names, which was the main accused person and the father. Now the sister has been added”