The trial of Mohammed Bello Abubakar, a former Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Local Government and Community Development, Sokoto State, on charges of money laundering and forgery slated for Thursday, February 22, 2018 could not go on following the absence of the defendant’s counsel, Y. C. Maikyau, SAN.
Abubakar, who was also a former Commissioner, Ministry Lands and Housing, Sokoto State, is facing a 43-count charge of conspiracy, money laundering and forgery preferred against him and others by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, before Justice R. M. Aikawa of the Federal High Court sitting in Sokoto.
He is being prosecuted alongside Abubakar Abdullahi Ahmed, a former deputy director in the Ministry.
At the sitting, the prosecution represented by S. K. Ateh, informed the court that its witness, Usman Mukhtar, was in court and expressed readiness to go on with the matter, but a counsel representing the first defendant prayed the court for an adjournment saying, Abubakar’s counsel, Maikyau, had through a letter informed the court that he would be attending a meeting in the United Kingdom.
Consequently, Justice Aikawa adjourned to May 30 – 31, 2018 for continuation of trial.
Abubakar, a civil servant, was alleged to be living above his means as the extent of his assets is not supported by his legitimate sources of income.
The charge followed an investigation which uncovered hundreds of millions naira stolen and diverted by the first defendant during his tenure as Permanent Secretary for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs of Sokoto State under the administration of Aliyu Wamako, the then Governor of the State.
Abubakar is said to own five companies - Rose Gallery Nigeria Limited, Silver Spring Concept, Gidadawa Global Ventures, BAG Interiors and Eco Habitat Nigeria Limited – and several bank accounts. It was gathered that over N2billion was paid into the suspect's bank accounts by various individuals and companies between 2008 and 2012 for unstated services.
The suspect also has properties at various locations across Sokoto State valued at over N476million.
Media and Publicity
22 February, 2018