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Arms procurement scam: EFCC wants separate trial for Dasuki, others

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Thursday told an FCT High Court that it would ask to separate the trial of former National Security Adviser (NSA), Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd) from that of seven other defendants.

The EFCC arraigned Dasuki in 2015 on two separate cases alongside other defendants before Justice Hussein Baba-Yusuf.

The ex-NSA is standing trial on alleged misappropriation of arms procurement funds.

In the first case Dasuki was charged alongside a former Minister of State for Finance, Bashir Yuguda; a former Governor of Sokoto State, Attahiru Bafarawa, his son, Sagir and his company, Dalhatu Investment Limited, on a 25-count charge of criminal breach of trust and misappropriation of public fund to the tune N19.4 billion.

While in the second, the ex-NSA is standing trial on a 19-count charge of money laundering and breach of trust to the tune of N13.5 billion alongside a former General Manager of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Baba- Kusa and two firms: Acacia Holdings Limited and Reliance Referral Hospital Limited.

A former Director of Finance and Administration, Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), Shuaibu Salisu, who is also listed as a defendant, was later removed from the charge.

At the resumed sitting in the case FCT/HC/CR/43/2015, EFCC counsel, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), expressed frustration over the continued absence of Dasuki, who is the first defendant in the case.

He told the court that the prosecution had filed a motion dated November 4, seeking the continuation of trial in Dasuki’s absence, adding that the prosecution was served with a counter affidavit on Thursday morning.

Jacobs, however, said the best thing to do in the present circumstance was the unbundling of the case so that Dasuki would be separated from other defendants.

He lamented the frustration with the continuation of the case, and said: “we can’t be in the same place for four years without moving.”

He, therefore, told the court that the charge against the defendants might be amended to remove Dasuki’s name to enable other defendants to face their trial without further delays. (NAN)

 

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