Former governor of Katsina State, Ibrahim Shema, have been declared wanted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, for inflation of contracts, abuse of office, diversion of funds and embezzlement running into billions of naira.
This was contained in a public notice signed by the commission’s Head of Media and Publicity, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, informing members of public about the development.
According to Uwujaren, Shema was first invited in December 2015 for questioning without success, adding that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain has since ignored all invitations extended to him.
The public notice read in part:
“The public is hereby notified that Ibrahim Shema, a former Governor of Kastina State, is wanted by the EFCC in connection with a case of criminal conspiracy, inflation of contracts, abuse of office, diversion of funds and embezzlement, running into billions of naira.
“The former governor ignored several invitations by the commission since December 1, 2015, when he was first summoned by the agency. All efforts to locate him at his known addresses in Katsina and Abuja were futile.
“The 59-year-old ex-governor hails from the Dutsena-ma Local Government Area of Katsina State. He is tall, light in complexion and speaks Hausa and English fluently.
“Anybody, having useful information as to his whereabouts, should contact the commission.”
Shema, who was governor of the state from May 2007 to May 2015, is said to be wanted for allegedly mismanaging about N68 billion of state funds.
According to an EFCC source, in 2012 alone, Shema allegedly diverted about N18 billion from government coffers into his private accounts for undisclosed reasons.
And further raided local governments monthly allocation accounts which were being jointly run with the state government, leaving little for developmental projects and clearance of local government employees’ wages and salaries. A sum of N50 billion is believed to have been mismanaged this way.
The source added that Ibrahim Shema, who had been evading the anti-graft office for close to a year, narrowly escaped being arrested on Wednesday.