Ba­farawa in­structed me to share N87m among his aides – Ex-com­mis­sioner

Daily Trust - - NEWS - From Abubakar Auwal, Sokoto

A for­mer com­mis­sioner dur­ing the Gover­nor At­tahiru Dal­hatu Ba­farawa’s ad­min­is­tra­tion, Se­na­tor Sal­ihu Bak­wai SabonBirni, yes­ter­day told the Sokoto High Court how the for­mer gover­nor al­legedly in­structed him to with­draw the sum of N89 mil­lion from the state’s Ed­u­ca­tion Re­sus­ci­ta­tion Ac­count and share it among his com­mis­sion­ers and spe­cial ad­viser.

He also told the court that an­other N29 mil­lion was with­drawn from the same ac­count for the pur­chase of ve­hi­cles.

Bak­wai, who was one of the wit­nesses in­vited by the Eco­nomic and Fi­nan­cial Crime Com­mis­sion (EFCC) to tes­tify in the graft charges against Ba­farawa al­leged that he met the for­mer gover­nor at the Sul­tan Abubakar III In­ter­na­tional Air­port, Sokoto on March 4, 2007, and that af­ter ex­chang­ing pleas­antries, he di­rected him to with­draw N89 mil­lion and give each of his com­mis­sion­ers N2 mil­lion and N1 mil­lion to each of his four spe­cial ad­vis­ers.

He said that

the com­mis­sion­ers were 12 and that since he was also a com­mis­sioner at that time, he ben­e­fit­ted from the money.

He fur­ther al­leged that Ba­farawa also in­structed him to take the re­main­ing N61 mil­lion to Al­haji Umarun Kwabo, who in turn or­dered him to give it to the then Sec­re­tary of the state Pil­grims Wel­fare Agency.

He said the money was with­drawn from the state Ed­u­ca­tion Re­sus­ci­ta­tion Ac­count, which he was one of its sig­na­to­ries at the time.

When asked about the pur­pose of the money by the pros­e­cut­ing coun­sel, Bar­ris­ter Ja­cob Ochidi, the for­mer com­mis­sioner said he did not know.

Asked how he uti­lized his own share, he said: “As a fam­ily man, I spent it on my chil­dren school fees and other do­mes­tic needs.”

How­ever, he ap­peared to be con­fused when asked about the na­ture of the in­struc­tion for the with­drawal, as he first said it was an oral in­struc­tion which was later doc­u­mented, but he quickly with­drew the lat­ter and stuck to the oral in­struc­tion.

Af­ter his tes­ti­mony, the judge, Jus­tice Bello Ab­bas, ad­journed the case to May 19.

Osita FRSC Boss

PHOTO Sani Maikatanga

PDP Na­tional Chair­man Dr. Ah­madu Adamu Mu’azu (left) with Sokoto State Deputy Gover­nor Mukhtar Sha­gari, dur­ing the PDP gover­nor’s meet­ing in Dutse, Ji­gawa State yes­ter­day.

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