The trial of Senator Shehu Sani’s alleged $25,000 fraud resumed in court on Tuesday with a prosecution witness, Alhaji Sani Dauda continuing his testimony.
Dauda, who is a prosecution witness six (PW6) and the victim in the alleged $25,000 fraud told Justice I.E. Ekwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, how Senator Sani knelt and begged him to alter his statement with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on how he allegedly duped him.
Sani, who represented Kaduna Central senatorial district at the 8th Senate, is facing prosecution by the commission on two-count criminal charges bordering on name-dropping, influence-peddling and obtaining the sum of $25,000.00 from Dauda, under a false pretence that he would use the sum to bribe the acting chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, in order to shield the plaintiff from investigation and prosecution and to prompt the commission to arrest and prosecute the plaintiff’s estranged son-in-law, one Abubakar Musa.
Dauda, in his testimony before the court, said that Sani, after allegedly defrauding him of the money, came to his office, knelt, held his legs and begged him to change the statement he gave to the EFCC, concerning the fraud.
According to him, Sani made the entreaties in the presence of his brother, Dr. Ibrahim, who came along with him to his Kaduna residence.
Continuing, Dauda quoted Sani as saying: “You are like a father to me, my mom and dad knew you for more than 20 years, and you’re also my godfather”.
He said the senator pleaded that he needed him (Dauda) to change the statement because of his political career.
According to Dauda, “I then told him I cannot change my statement because I was the one who took the case to them (EFCC). Then his brother, Ibrahim told me that he knew one Permanent Secretary, named Shinkafi who is Magu’s friend and he will inform him about the situation, and that he will get back to me on Sunday”.
Dauda also said that Sani assured him not to worry about what would be Magu’s reaction, claiming that the EFCC boss was his friend and that he would just call and talk to him.
“I was in my farm that fateful Sunday when Shehu Sani came and told me that Shinkafi said I should write a letter of withdrawal to EFCC, I then told him I can’t. Since that day, I never saw him again. He switched off his phones as I could not reach him. I then texted (sic) him three times but no response”.
Narrating how he later confirmed that Sani defrauded him, Dauda said that, “I contacted one of my friends, Murtala who knew the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) and he confirmed to me that the CJN didn’t know anything about the matter, then I realized he has duped me.”
Dauda also told the court that when he was coming back from the lesser hajj, aboard Emirate Airline, en route Dubai, that he met Magu and told him about the issue, and that Magu said he knew nothing about the issue. It was at this point, according to him, that Magu advised him to meet his secretary and write a petition on the issue.
Justice Ekwo discharged the witness from the dock and adjourned the matter till July 8, 2020, for continuation of trial.
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