N11bn Fraud: Ex-Katsina Gov, Shema, three others must face trial – Supreme Court

The Supreme Court of the Federal Republic of Nigeria affirmed the judgment of Court of Appeal in Katsina, which authorized the trial of ex-governor of Katsina State, Ibrahim Shema on the allegation of N11 billion fraud.

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The appellants in their application filled through legal counsel J.T Kehinde had challenged the jurisdiction of the trial court and claimed that the EFCC lacks the power to prosecute them for alleged offenses committed in the state
However, delivering a 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.
The court also made it known that the EFCC is guilty of frontloading necessary documents along with the charge sheet to the applicants to prepare their defence. The court emphasized that the appellant has the right to be properly notified so as to have ample time to prepare their defence as this may determine whether to plead guilty or not.
The Supreme Court in its judgment described the application of the appellants as unmeritorious and resolved that the decision of the lower court stand.
Mr Shema, who was governor of the state between 2007 and 2011 on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), is being tried alongside three others, namely Sani Makana, Lawal Safana and Ibrahim Dankaba.

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