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Why EFCC withdrew from Goje’s N25bn fraud trial

Why EFCC withdrew from Goje’s N25bn fraud trial - the case, over the, n25 billion fraud, fraud, EFCC, Commission, any criminal case


By Our Reporter

The Economic and Finan­cial Crimes (), on Sunday, ex­plained why it has handed over of alleged N25 billion against former Gombe state governor, Senator Danjuma Goje, to the Office of the Attorney-Gen­eral of the Federation.

’s spokesman, Tony Orilade, who confirmed the with­drawal of the from Goje’s prosecution almost eight years after the former governor entered its black book, argued that the OAGF has the consti­tutional power to take over from EFCC at any stage of investigation.

According to Orilade, by virtue of the existing law, the office of the attorney- general of the feder­ation has the power to take over at any stage; and that was “exactly what has happened” in Goje’s case.

Orient Daily gathered that the OAGF, last Friday, took over of alleged N25 billion filed against Goje, the senator representing Gombe Central Sen­atorial Zone under the All Pro­gressives Congress, (APC).

The twist in Goje’s corruption case occurred barely 24 hours he agreed to step down for Senator Ahmad Lawan (APC-Yobe) in the race for the Senate President after a close-door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari.

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Recall that the commission had been prosecuting the former Gombe governor, until last Friday. The case, which was before Justice Babatunde Quadiri of Jos Federal High Court II, had even gone to the Jos Court of Appeal remaining two count charges out of 21 filed against him by EFCC.

The appellate court is yet to fix a date for the hearing of the appeal before the new political develop­ment. When the case came up for an emergency hearing before Justice Quadiri, the EFCC counsel, Wahab Shittu, told the court that the agen­cy was withdrawing from the case and handing it office of the Attorney-General for continuation.

“My Lord, this case was earlier adjourned for June 20 for continu­ation of hearing, but then, we are here today on the latest develop­ment on the matter. We, as EFCC counsels, are withdrawing from the matter and handing it over to the office of the Attorney-General for continuation with the prose­cution. As you can see, we have in court a State Counsel from the AGF’s office to formal take over of this case from us,” Shittu declared.

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Paul Erokoro (SAN), did not object to the EFCC withdrawal and handing over of the case to the Attorney-General.

He said, “My Lord, we are not objecting to the anti-graft with­drawal and handing over the prosecution to the AG’s office.”

Pius Asika, counsel from the of­fice of the Attorney General, how­ever, announced his appearance for the case. Mr. Asika then ap­plied for an adjournment to enable him to prepare for the case proper.

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