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Dariye’s trial witness recants EFCC’s raid on Finance Ministry

By Soni Daniel

The trial of former governor of Plateau State, Joshua Dariye, continued yesterday before Justice Adebukola Banjoko of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court, Gudu, Abuja, with a defence witness, Paul Datugum, a staff in the Office of the Accountant-General, Plateau State Ministry of Finance, failing to substantiate an alleged raid by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on the Ministry in 2005.

At yesterday’s sitting, Datugum, who claimed to have worked in the State Ministry of Education between 2000 and 2006, told the court that his predecessor in the Central Cash Unit of the Office of the Accountant-General, the late Bala Kwafur, did not hand over any document to him because “EFCC staff had invaded and taken away all the documents in the Ministry of Finance by the time I was posted there.”

Datugum, who is the seventh defence witness to be called by Dariye to prove his innocence, said: “On that fateful day, I was in the Ministry of Education when we saw people from the Ministry of Finance running helter-skelter.

‘’Then, we saw a Hilux bus parked outside the Ministry of Finance and staff of EFCC were packing documents from the Office of the Accountant-General.”

However, under cross-examination by counsel to the EFCC, Rotimi Jacobs, SAN, Datugum, who admitted that the Ministry of Education’s building was some metres from the Ministry of Finance, said he did not see the particular documents allegedly carted away by EFCC operatives.


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