Justice Inyang Edem Ekwo of the Federal High Court Abuja has warned erstwhile senator from Kaduna State, Senator Shehu Sani that he may have his bail revoked if he continues to avoid attending court proceedings of his trial at the court. Shehu Sani was on Monday, 27th January, 2020 granted bail by Justice Ekwo, after he was arraigned in court by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC on two counts of name-dropping and receiving bribe. But Sani has since then, failed to appear in court.
The 56 year-old Justice Ekwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, this afternoon on Monday, June 29, 2020, stated that he would revoke the bail granted Senator Shehu Sani if dares to be absent in court on the next adjourned date.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, is prosecuting Shehu Sani on two-count criminal charges, bordering on name-dropping and obtaining the sum of US$25,000.00 (Twenty Five Thousand United States Dollars) from Alhaji Sani Dauda of ASD Motors, Kaduna under a false pretence that he would use the money to bribe the Acting Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, to protect Alhaji Dauda from EFCC’s investigation and convince the Commission to arrest and prosecute one Abubakar Musa who has a business issue with Alhaji Dauda.
In the course of today’s trial proceedings, Sani’s counsel, A. A. Ibrahim SAN, told the court that the defendant was not in court because his neighbour just died of COVID-19, while also citing the Kaduna State Government’s order as regarding movement restriction in the area. He said, “My Lord, the defendant is unavoidably absent in court today because one of his neighbours died of COVID-19, and the government of Kaduna State placed a restriction of movement in the area, hence making him absent. In the circumstance, we are pleading with the court to give us a date.”
The lawyer representing EFCC, who is the prosecuting counsel, Abba Mohammed, objected to the motion raised for adjournment, telling the court that he had two witnesses in court and one of them came from the same Kaduna that Senator Shehu Sani claims its Government is stopping him from attending his case in the court.
Despite his objection, Justice Ekwo adjourned the case to July 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th, 2020 for continuation of the trial.
Shehu Sani has had a running battle with Malam Nasir El-Rufai, the Executive Governor of Kaduna. This may have precipitated his premonition towards attending court proceedings in nearby city of Abuja. If not so, then the politician could be trying to stall court progress, something that is not uncommon among the country’s politicians.