Court grants ex-lawmaker, Shehu Sani 10m bail, seizes passport

AN FCT High Court on Monday granted former senator in the 8th Assembly, Shehu Sani N10 million naira bail over allegations of bribery and advanced fraud by the Economic Financial Crimes Commission.

The Court also ordered Sani to deposit his International Passport with the court and also provide a sureties with landed property within the jurisdiction of the court.

EFCC arraigned Sani over allegations that the former senator collected $25,000 from one Sani Dauda with a promise to bribe the Chief Justice of the Nation, Tanko Mohammed and EFCC Acting Chairman, Ibrahim Magu in order to influence a pending case before the court.

Sani pleaded not guilty to the allegations as they were read to him by the sitting Judge on the case, Inyang Ekwo.

Counsel to the defendant, A. Ibrahim prayed the court to grant him bail on the premise that he is not known to flout bail permissions and the bail is a fundamental right of the accused as stipulated by the Nigerian constitution.

Abbah Mohammed, counsel to the EFCC objected the bail application by the defendant, urging the court to dismiss the application because the defendant might interfere with the proceedings if granted bail.

However, Justice Ekwo stepped down hearing of the bail to enable the prosecution to study the application as argued that the application was just received on Monday.

    On resumption of the bail hearing, Ekwo granted the former senator bail and adjourned the trial to February 24, 25 and 26.

    Sani, a known critic of the All Progressive Congress (APC) and Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, many believed that his prosecution is not unrelated to his critical approach to the present administration.

    Before his arraignment on Monday, Sani has been in detention for 30 days without prosecution with only 14 days accounted for as the EFCC claimed it received court order to detain him for a period of 14 days.

    Nigerians, advocacy groups and other civil society organizations had called for his release from ‘unlawful detention’ of the anti-graft agency.

    Lukman Abolade is an Investigative reporter with The ICIR. Reach out to him via [email protected], on twitter @AboladeLAA and FB @Correction94

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