- Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arraigned four officials of the Kwara state government
- The EFCC named the arraigned officials as Abubakar Ishiak, Shina Mudasir Akorede, Rasaq Momonu and Hafees Yusuf
- The defendants pleaded not guilty to two counts of alleged money laundering
Four officials of the Kwara government have been arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) before a Federal High Court for alleged money laundering.
The officials, Abubakar Ishiak, a permanent secretary; Shina Mudasir Akorede, director of administration and finance; Rasaq Momonu, controller, finance and account, and Hafees Yusuf, cashier, were arraigned before Justice Babangana Ashigar of a Federal High Court sitting in Ilorin, the capital of the state.
A statement by the EFCC said that they were arraigned on a two-count charge bordering on money laundering.
One of the charges read that on February 14, 2019 at Ilorin, Kwara state, within the jurisdiction of the court, the defendants made a cash payment of N20,300,000 to organisation through its chief executive officer, Jimoh Sarafadeen Kolade.
The charge said the money was allegedly transferred for services rendered to Kwara state ‘Government House’, but that it “exceeded the limitation of N10 million payable to a body corporate and thereby committed an offence” contrary to the laws of the country.
The report said the defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges making the prosecuting counsel, Christopher Mschelia, to ask the court for a date so that trial could commence.
The prosecuting counsel reportedly said the EFCC was prepared to prove its case against them.
“We are asking your lordship to order that they should be remanded in prison,” Mschelia said.
The EFCC statement said the lead defence counsel, Abdulwahab Bamidele, made an oral application for bail which was objected to by Mschelia.
Mschelia asked the court to reject the request adding that the substantive bail application was not ripe for hearing.
In his ruling, Justice Ashigar rejected the oral application for bail.
He ordered that the defendants to be remanded in EFCC custody before adjourning to May 8, 2019, for hearing of the formal bail application.
The trial is to commence on June 6.
Legit.ng earlier reported that the outgoing governor of Kwara, Abdulfatah Ahmed, recently constituted a 24-man transition committee to liaise with the incoming All Progressives Congress (APC) government ahead of May 29 when his tenure will come to an end.
Speaking at the inauguration of the committee, the governor expressed his willingness to hand over the state government affairs to Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of the APC.
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