Alleged N11bn Diversion: Court Adjourns Ex-Governor Shema’s Trial

.The Katsina State High Court has adjourned the trial of former governor Ibrahim Shema and three others over an allegation of fund diversion in the sum of N11billion.

Justice Mai Kaita Bako adjourned the trial till November 12 when the matter came up in court on Tuesday.

Addressing reporters shortly after the hearing, lead counsel for the prosecution, Okutepa Samuel, said the prosecution called two witnesses to give their testimonies.

He added that five sets of documents were tendered against the defendants, in line with statements of accounts obtained from various banks.

Lead counsel for the defendants, Akinlolu Kehinde, on his part, told journalists that the defence counsel objected to the documents tendered by the prosecution.

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had accused Mr Shema and the three other persons of diverting the sum of N11billion while serving as the governor of the state.

Others facing trial are the former Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Sani Makana; former Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Lawal Rufa’I; as well as former Chairman of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON) in Katsina, Lawal Dankaba.

At the last proceeding on July 9, the court adjourned the hearing till October 15 and 16.

The case was adjourned following an application by the prosecution counsel that their next witness was sick and had travelled abroad for treatment.

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Meanwhile, the EFCC said it has concluded plans to drag Mr Shema before the Katsina Division of the Federal High Court on Wednesday.

The anti-graft agency disclosed that it was set to charge the former governor with 26 counts of money laundering.

It claimed that Shema reportedly diverted the sum of N5.7 billion meant for the Katsina Subsidy Re-Investment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) fund