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Published On: Wed, Oct 24th, 2018

AGF directs ICPC to hands off case against Kastina Sure-P officials

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By Vivian Okejeme Abuja

The trial of former Special Adviser on Sure P Department Katsina State, Nasiru Salisu Ingawa and two other officials of the state government, yesterday, suffered set back The Independent Corruption Practises Commission (ICPC) is prosecuting the three Sure-P officials over alleged financial crimes committed by the officials of the state government in charge of Sure P department When the matter came up yesterday, the prosecution Counsel, Abdulsalam Sabiu told the court that the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami SAN, has directed ICPC to hand over the case file to his office for onward transmission to the office of Katsina State Attorney General.
The trial which started last year October after the investigation of ICPC into the alleged financial crimes committed by the officials of the State government in charge of Sure P Department could not proceed beyond initial arraignment.
The matter has been stalled for long following decision of Katsina State government to take over the prosecution of the accused from the ICPC.
Suspecting a foul play, the prosecution agency resisted the decision but later backed out following the issuance of fiat from the AGF.
The AGF had in the fiat, directed Katsina State Government to take over the prosecution of the accused from the ICPC.
It could be recalled at the last sitting of July 3rd, 2018, the Prosecution Counsel who is also the Permanent Secretary Katsina State Ministry of Justice, Abdulsalam Sabiu, while requesting for adjournment, informed the Court that the prosecution could not continue because the ICPC wrote a petition to the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo.
According to him, ICPC is complaining about decision to hand over the case file to Katsina State government.
He said the adjournment became necessary to enable the issue to be sorted out.
The case was then adjourned by the trial judge, Justice Maikaita Bako to October 23rd, 2018.
Further in his submissions yesterday, the prosecution counsel, Abdulsalam Sabiu informed the court that the vice president referred the issue back to the AGF.
He said that the AGF has directed ICPC to hand over the case file, the decision which the ICPC has complied with by handing over the case file to the office of AGF, but the case file is yet to be transmitted to the Katsina State Government.
However, Sabiu asked for the adjournment of the case, the application which was not opposed by the defence counsel, A. S. Yerima.
Other defendants are the former Special Adviser on Sure P Department Katsina State office, Director of Finance and Account Katsina State Sure P Department, Abdulazees Abdullahi Shinkafi and Chief Store Officer in the Katsina State Civil Service, Bello Ibrahim Bindawa.
Meantime, the trial judge, Justice Maikaita Bako adjourned the case till November 27th, 2018 for continuation.

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