The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Tuesday arraigned a former Governor of Katsina State, Ibrahim Shema in court for alleged financial misappropriation during his tenure as governor.
He was charged alongside three others before Justice Ibrahim Maikaita Bako of Katsina High Court on a 22-count charge bordering on criminal breach of trust and misappropriation of public funds.
In his submission at the court, Shema’s counsel, Mr. J. B Dawodu (SAN), challenged the jurisdiction of the court to hear the case. The agency’s counsel, Jibrin Samuel, urged the court to revoke an administrative bail earlier given to Shema for showing some “signs of not reporting to the commission” as agreed.
He demanded that Shema be remanded in prison so that there could be access to him at will.
But Justice Bako ruled that it was premature for the EFCC counsel to pray for the detention of the ex-governor. He, however, advised both sides to take the case slowly in order to have a decent trial, and adjourned the case till February 7.
BuzzNigeria recalls that the anti-graft agency had last year declared the former governor wanted for inflation of contracts, abuse of office, diversion of funds and embezzlement running into billions of naira.
According to the EFCC, Shema was first invited in December 2015 for questioning without success and had since ignored all invitations extended to him.
Ibrahim Shema, described the notice by the EFCC declaring him wanted as malicious and misleading. He accused the EFCC of deliberately embarking on false propaganda against him by posting that he ignored several invitations which it extended to him, adding that he was prepared to honour an invitation by the commission before he was declared wanted.