The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, has once more arraigned another Accountant General for allegedly committing fraud to the tune of N289m.
Saadu Maiwada and Sani Lawal BK, both officials of the office of the Accountant General of Katsina State, were arraigned on Thursday before Justice Musa Danladi of the Katsina State High Court on a five count charge of conspiracy and criminal breach of trust.
Recall a similar case where operatives of the Commission arrested Ahmed Idris, the Accountant General of the Federation for alleged stealing and criminal breach of trust to the tune of N109, 485,572,691.9
The former AGF was first arrested on May 16, 2022 and remained in EFCC custody until his bail on 2nd June 2022.
However, during the sitting today, EFCC narrated in court that Maiwada and BK committed the fraud during their tenures as Sub Treasurer and Deputy Sub Treasurer in the office of the Accountant General of Katsina State,
They allegedly conspired and converted the sum of N289,000,000 (Two Hundred and Eighty Nine Million Naira) from the coffers of Katsina State.
Investigation by the Commission revealed that the defendants laundered the stolen funds through the account of Integrated Gas Services Limited.
Further investigations showed that in the company, the first defendant (Maiwada) is a Director.
EFCC said the sum of N49, 000,000 was also allegedly transferred from the account of Integrated Gas Services Limited to the personal account of the second defendant (Lawal BK), who is now the Deputy Accountant General of the state.
Both defendants pleaded not guilty when the charges were read to them.
One of the charges reads, “That you, Saadu Miawada and Sani Lawal BK sometime in 2017 at Katsina within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court while being entrusted with dominion over money belonging to Katsina State Government dishonestly converted to your own use the sum of N120,790,942.86 (One Hundred and Twenty Million, Seven Hundred Ninety Thousand, Nine Hundred and Forty-two Naira, Eighty-six Kobo) which was transferred from Katsina State Government Sub -Treasury Expenditure Account number 1012424374 domiciled in United Bank for Africa (UBA) PLC to Integrated Gas Services Company Limited’s Fidelity Bank account no 4010693761 (CO1717299) and you thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 297 of the Penal Code Law of Katsina State 2021”.
In view of their pleas, counsel for the prosecution, Aisha Tahar Habib, prayed the court for a trial date.
However, Counsel for the defendants, J B Israel made an oral bail application on behalf of his clients but the prosecution objected, demanding for a formal application as the court is a court of record.
The judge admitted the defendants to bail in the sum of N5, 000,000 (Five Million Naira) each.
They were also ordered each to provide a surety with a landed property within Katsina and present letters of introduction from a traditional ruler as the matter was adjourned till July 24, 2023 for trial.