N11bn fraud: Shema loose as S/Court orders him, 3 others to face trial at Katsina
The Supreme Court of Nigeria has on Friday affirmed the judgment of Court of Appeal, Kaduna, which authorised the trial of ex-governor of Katsina State, Ibrahim Shema, on allegation of N11 billion fraud.
The Katsina State’s Ex-Governor Shema, who was the second governor of the state between 2007 and 2011 on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) is been tried along side, Sani Makana, Lawal Safana and Ibrahim Dankaba.
While delivering ruling on the interlocutory application, a full panel of the court led by Justice Sidi Bage, held that the Constitution empowered the EFCC to prosecute suspects of graft allegations at federal and state levels.
Justice Bage also held that evidence placed before the apex court had shown that the respondent which in this case is the Economic and financial crimes commission (EFCC), front-loaded necessary documents along with the charge sheet to the applicants to prepare their defence.
The panel of judges also ruled that the judgment of the Appeal Court, Kaduna, delivered on Sept.13, 2017, which mandated the applicants to submit themselves to trial at the High Court of Katsina, is right.
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It could be recalled that EFCC had arraigned Shema and the three others before Justice Maikaita Bako of the state high court for allegedly defrauding the state during his eight years as governor.
However, the accused had approached the apex court asking it to set aside the decisions of the lower courts.
They had challenged the jurisdiction of the trial court and the acclaimed lack of powers of the EFCC to prosecute them for alleged offences committed in the state.
Katsina Post recalls that the trial court had fixed February 13 for parties to report to it on the outcome of the Supreme Court decision.