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Fresh Fraud Charges Filed Against Ex-Kaduna State Gov.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC has re-arraigned the former governor of Kaduna State, Mukhtar Ramalan Yero for money laundering and criminal diversion of funds.

Also re-arraigned with the ex governor were former Minister of State, Nuhu Somo Waya; former Kaduna State PDP Chairman, Abubakar Haruna Gaya and the former Secretary to the State Government, Hamza Ishaq.

They were arraigned on Tuesday before Justice Z.B Abubakar of the Federal High Court Kaduna on an eight-count amended charge for criminal diversion of N700million

Their prosecution began after investigations revealed that the accused persons allegedly benefited in the $115million diverted by former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison Madueke which was shared to politicians and election officials in the 36 States of the federation to influence the result of the 2015 presidential election.

Investigations further revealed that Kaduna State got over N700million in two instalments.

The money was received by the trio of Waya, Gaya and Ishaq on behalf of the State for onward delivery to INEC staff spread across the 23 Local Government Areas of the State.

All defendants pleaded not guilty to all the eight count charge.

Upon their pleas, counsel to the EFCC, Joshua Saidi, prayed the court to fix a date for commencement of trial.

But Yunus Ustaz Usman, SAN, representing the defendants, appealed that all defendants should be admitted to the existing bail granted to them when they were first arraigned earlier in the year by the Court.

The court ruled that since all defendants have already been granted bail without any hitch, she would rely on the existing conditions. She therefore ruled that the former bail conditions remain valid and should stand.

He pleaded not guilty to the charge.

The re-arraignment of all above accused persons was as a result of the transfer of Justice S.M Shuaibu to another jurisdiction.

Justice Abubakar however adjourned all the cases comprising that of the Ex Governor and three others to 24th January, 2019 and that of Abdulrasheed Baba Ahmed to 29th January, 2019 for commencement of trial.

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