Pastor remanded for owing hotel N.5m during Atiku’s electioneering
A pastor with the Lutheran Church of Christ in Nigeria, Jalingo, Taraba State, Reverend Eli Dilli, has been remanded in prison for allegedly absconding without paying N518,000 hotel bills.
Dilli, the presiding priest of LCCN, Majami’ar Ceto, Jeka da Fari parish, Jalingo, had lodged in Tufini Hotel and Suites and had left the facility after the payment of N100,000, without paying the N518,000 balance.
The pastor was alleged to have worked for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and reportedly coordinated a network of pastors to boost the electoral chances of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, and that of the state governorship candidate in the build up to the 2019 general elections.
Dilli was arrested following a complaint lodged against him by the manager of the hotel, James Joshua.
He was arraigned on Tuesday before the Yola Chief Magistrates’ Court I on charges bordering on cheating.
The police prosecutor, Sergeant Nicholas Sawe, told the court that the offence was contrary to Section 312 of the Penal Code, Law of Adamawa State, 2018.
Dilli, who pleaded not guilty and denied owing the hotel said, “I have paid them over N300,000; I am not owing them.”
The prosecution pleaded with the magistrate, Aliyu Bawuro, to allow fix a date for the prosecution to produce witnesses.
Bawuro adjourned the case till 16 August, 2021 and remanded Eli at the Yola Correctional Centre.
He said the denial by Dilli had made the case criminal in nature.
“It would have been a different story if he admitted to owing but he totally denies it. So we have no option than to remand him in prison,” Bawuro said.
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