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Alleged N1.940bn fraud: Ex-governor Aliyu, former commissioner arraigned

- The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) re-arraigns Babangida Aliyu and a former environment commissioner, Umar Nasko

- The former governor and his ex-commissioner are facing eight counts of alleged money laundering

- The court grants bail to the two defendants and adjourns till July 4, for hearing

A former governor of Niger state, Babangida Aliyu, and his then environment commissioner Umar Nasko, have been arraigned for alleged money laundering.

Aliyu and Nasko were arraigned before a Federal High Court in Minna, the capital of Niger, on eight counts of criminal conspiracy and laundering of over N1.940 billion ecological funds released by the federal government to the state in 2014.

Legit.ng reports that the offences are contrary to section 18(a) of the money laundering act, 2011 (as amended) and punishable under section 15(3) of same law.

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They were reportedly arraigned following the transfer of their cases to Justice Aminu Aliyu as the former presiding judge had been moved.

Daily Trust reports that the two pleaded not guilty when the charges were read to them.

Olajide Ayodele, a counsel to the first defendant, said he had filed an application for bail. He also prayed the court to grant same.

In his part, the counsel to the second defendant, Daniel Omako, urged the court to exercise its discretion by granting his client bail.

Boniface Bassey, the prosecution counsel, told the court that he would leave the issue of bail to the discretion of the court.

Justice Aliyu thereafter ruled to restore the bail earlier granted by Justice Yellim Bogoro and adjourned the matter to July 4, for hearing.

Legit.ng earlier reported that the acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, recently identified corruption as one that encourages insecurity in the country.

Magu said this at a one-day National Democracy Day anti-corruption summit organised by the EFCC in Abuja on Tuesday, June 11. Magu also noted that since 2015, the commission has secured an estimated 1,204 convictions.

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Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka
Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka

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