EFCC on trail of ex-Gov. Shema over N60 bn mismanaged

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Katsina ex-Gov. Ibrahim Shema is now a wanted man after he narrowly escaped arrest on Aug 14.

The EFCC began a manhunt for Shema over allegation levelled at him by his successor Aminu Masari who said he mismanaged about N68 billion belonging to Katsina when he was in office between 2007 and 2015.

According to sources Premium Times quoted, in 2012 alone, Shema allegedly diverted about N18 billion from government coffers into his private accounts for undisclosed reasons.

“The officials said Mr. Shema further raided local governments monthly allocation accounts which were being jointly run with the state government, leaving little for developmental projects and clearance of local government employees’ wages and salaries,” the online newspaper reported, adding that a sum of N50 billion is believed to have been mismanaged this way.

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The EFCC sources said Mr. Shema had been evading the anti-graft office for close to a year; and narrowly escaped being arrested on Wednesday.

The former governor has been parrying off the EFCC invitation since December 2015, saying he wasn’t in the country, according to the commission’s officials.

“He wrote back to us that he would visit as soon as he returned, but he never did. Another two subsequent invitations were sent to him which he failed to honour.”

Shema’s lawyer, Wole Olanipekun, however, was said to have requested for a reschedule of the invitation in July, and the agency has not responded in anyway.

“From all indications, it appears like the same issue which Governor Bello Masari had petitioned EFCC about,” Shema’s spokesperson Oluwabusola Olawale said, describibg the allegation as false.

He said Masari, out of malice, has equally set up a Commission of Inquiry to investigate the matter, and there’s a pending court case on it.

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