Alleged corruption: Judge’s absence stalls Bauchi governor-elect’s arraignment
The absence of Justice Yusuf Haliru of an FCT High Court on Monday stalled the arraignment of the governor-elect of Bauchi State, Bala Mohammed.
Mohammed, who was elected on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, was scheduled to be arraigned on a fresh six counts, bordering on false declaration of assets and giving false information to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
At the court, Mohammed and his counsel and the EFCC counsel were present but the court did not sit because the judge, was on election petition duty in Abeokuta, Ogun State.
Counsel for the EFCC, Mr Wahab Shittu, while speaking with newsmen, said:” the EFCC is an anti-corruption agency, it does not play politics.
“It exists to serve the public.”
On the arraignment, he said “It is a matter that was ongoing before another judge who has now been elevated to the Court of Appeal.
The expectation he said was that the matter would soon be reassigned to another judge.
“Just a week ago, the registry of this court sent us a notice that today has been fixed for the re-arraignment of the defendant.
“It was not at the instance of the court.
“You know when a case is transferred to another court, it starts de novo (afresh).”
He added that no one should see what was happening as an attempt by the EFCC to intimidate anyone.
“Let us focus on the matter before the court. EFCC exists to serve everybody,” he said. Punch