Alleged N4bn fraud: EFCC drags Ex-Niger governor Babangida Aliyu, one other to Appeal Court

THE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has dragged a former governor of Niger state, Babangida Aliyu, to the Court of Appeal to set aside a no-case ruling granted him and a former chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Niger State, Tanko Beji.

This was disclosed in a statement signed by the commission’s head of media and publicity, Dele Oyewale, on Thursday, January 18.

Aliyu and Beji were issued a no-case ruling by Abdullahi Mukailu of the Niger state High Court, Minna, on December 7, 2023, in an alleged N4 billion fraud.

The EFCC had filed a seven-count charge bordering on conspiracy, abetment and criminal breach of trust before Aliyu Mayaki, now a retired judge, against Aliyu, Beji and a former commissioner for environment and chief of staff to Babangida Aliyu, Umar Nasko.

The matter was later reassigned to another judge, Abdullahi Mukailu. The EFCC called 11 witnesses, tendered over 400 exhibits, and closed its case.

However, the three defendants made a no-case submission before the court. On December 7, 2023, the judge granted the prayers in favour of Aliyu and Beji and directed Nasko to open his defence.

Dissatisfied with the ruling on Aliyu and Beji’s no-case submission, the EFCC filed a notice of appeal dated January 10, 2024.






     

     

    According to the EFCC, on January 15, 2024, when the commission’s counsel appeared in court to continue Nasko’s trial, the attorney-general (AG) of Niger state appeared in court with an application to take over the case from the EFCC.

    “Not done yet, the AG made another appearance four hours later and entered a nolle prosequi, which his lordship acted on and discharged Nasko.

    “For the EFCC, the road has not closed. The commission is proceeding in its appeal against Aliyu and Beji at the Court of Appeal with all its evidence against them,” the commission stated.

    It added that it would continue to discharge its duties in line with its mandate of tackling all economic and financial crimes in Nigeria without fear or favour.

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