N500m fraud: Court to rule on ex-minister’s statement November 28

Muntari Shagari
Muntari Shagari

A Federal High Court in Sokoto on Wednesday fixed November 28 for ruling on admissibility of a statement obtained from a former Minister of Water Resources, Muntari Shagari, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

Mr Shagari, is facing trail along with four other chieftains of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, over alleged N500 million illegal dealings with the former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Madueke.

Others on trial are Ibrahim Gidado, a former Information Commissioner, Sokoto State Chairman and Treasurer of PDP, Ibrahim Milgoma and Nasiru Dhalhatu, as well as the PDP state governorship candidate in 2015, Abdallah Wali.

Justice Saleh Idrissa-Kogo, fixed the date after Shagari’s counsel, Ibrahim Idris, objected to the admissibility of statement tendered by the lead prosecution, on the ground that it contravened stipulated laws.

Being led in evidence by EFCC counsel Taufiq Lasisi, an Investigation Officer, Nasiru Abubakar, told the court that he led five other officials to obtained defendants statements.

He said the EFCC obtained Fidelity bank documents which showed that the N500 million was transferred from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, on the instructions of the minister Madueke.

NAN reports that all the accused persons had pleaded not guilty to the five-count charge in the case instituted by the EFCC.

According to the prosecution, the offence committed in March 2015 contravenes the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2011, and is punishable under Section 16 (2) (b) of the same Act.