By Danjuma Michael
Katsina — Former Katsina State Governor, Ibrahim Shehu Shema was yesterday remanded in Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) custody over alleged money laundering of N5.7 billion SURE-P funds.
Shema was remanded yesterday on the orders of a Federal High Court after he was docked and a 26-count charge of alleged conspiracy and money laundering were read to him.
One of the charges read: “You Ibrahim Shema whilst being the executive governor of Katsina State, and one Idris Kwado (now at large) between June, 2014 and May 2015 at Katsina, Katsina State within the jurisdiction of this court, did conspire to commit an offence to wit money laundering and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 18(a) of the money laundering (prohibition) Act 2011 (as amended by the money laundering (prohibition) amendment act 2012 and punishable under section 15(3) of the same act.”
The presiding Judge, Justice Babagana Ashigar ordered that Shema be remanded till April 27.
Shema is standing trial over alleged diversion of state’s Subsidy Re-investment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) funds during his tenure as governor.
The former governor pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The EFCC had dragged the ex-governor before the court on Monday but his plea could not be taken due to issues raised by his lead counsel, Emmanuel Ukala, SAN.
Shema’s counsel pleaded for his bail through a written application filed and later, through an oral application, which the counsel, Sam Ologunorisa, SAN objected to.
Justice Ashigar however overruled the defendant’s oral application and fixed April 27, 2018 to hear the written application.