– A former Katsina state governor, Dr Ibrahim Shema, has accused his successor of witch-hunt
– Shema says Governor Aminu Masari masterminded his recent ‘abduction’ by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)
– The governor has however denied his predecessor’s claims
A former Katsina state governor, Dr Ibrahim Shema has accused his successor, Governor Aminu Masari of masterminding his recent ‘abduction’ by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
EFCC operatives on Tuesday, February 7 besieged the premises of the Katsina High Court where they picked the former governor up.
According to Daily Trust, Shema’s media aide, Oluwabusula Olawale, said the development was an extension of the “ongoing witch-hunt and intimidation using state and federal institutions.”
He described the EFCC’s move as “a sheer personal vendetta and a wicked attempt to humiliate and harass the immediate past governor.”
He continued: “We are saying it for the umpteenth time that Shema is not afraid of court trial. He has submitted himself to the court and he is ready to defend himself in an atmosphere of fair hearing, justice and rule of law.
“We are calling on the international community and well-meaning Nigerians to call Governor Aminu Bello Masari to order on his use of state and federal institutions for political intimidation and harassment before he truncates democratic institutions in Nigeria.”
But in a swift reaction, Governor Masari speaking through his spokesman, Abdu Labaran, dismissed the allegation, adding that the governor had no hands whatsoever in the ongoing travails of Shema.
His words: “If I remember well, there was a time Shema went on air challenging and daring Masari to take him to court; and now that the judicial process is taking its course, he is blaming the governor in a situation he has no control over or knowledge.
“Shema should bear his cross or look for other scapegoats but not Governor Masari.”
Shema is standing trial before Justice Maikaita Bako alongside three others, Rufai Safana, Sani Makana and Lawal Dankaba on 22 count charge bordering on alleged financial misdemeanor of about N11 billion.
Meanwhile, the PDP has condemned the continued trial of Shema. The opposition party said it was disheartening that the former governor was only being persecuted in the guise of anti-corruption fight by the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti state had also condemned the federal government for its action against Shema.
According to the governor, Shema’s trial was only part of a plot to ruin the opposition and its members ahead of President Buhari’s re-election campaign in 2019.
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