EFCC Arrests Former Jigawa State Governor, at Book Launch in Abuja
A former Jigawa state governor, Mr Saminu Turaki, was on Tuesday arrested by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) while attending a book launch at the International Conference Centre in Abuja.
The launch of the book titled, ‘The First Regular Combatant: Brigadier General Zakariya Maimalari’, which was written by Haruna Poloma, also had former President Olusegun Obasanjo in attendance.
Other eminent personalities who attended the book launch include former Head of State, Gen Yakubu Gowon; the National Security Adviser, Babagana Moguno; the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari; and the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai.
Mr Saminu Turaki was Jigawa state governor between 1999 and 2007. He was arrested and arraigned at the Federal Capital Territory High Court in 2007 on a 32-count charge bordering on stealing and misappropriation of N36 billion while he was governor.
The EFCC had also accused the former governor of using N12bn out of the N36bn to fund former President Obasanjo’s failed third term bid in 2006.
The case was later transferred to the Federal High Court, Dutse in Jigawa state after he challenged the jurisdiction of the FCT court.
The Saminu Turaki arrest on Tuesday may have been long in coming. Following his refusal to present himself for trial since 2011, EFCC operatives stormed Turaki’s house in May 2016 attempting to execute a warrant for his arrest warrant but failed to do so.
Turaki who was also a member of the Senate from 2007 to 2011 was thereafter declared wanted by the EFCC.
Another former Jigawa state governor, Sule Lamido is also being prosecuted by the EFCCfor alleged corrupt practices while in office and recently by the police for inciting violence.
Beyond the Saminu Turaki arrest, the Punch reports that Obasanjo had earlier at the book presentation said the mastermind of the January 1966 coup was not from the Eastern Region but from the West (later Mid-West Region) of Nigeria. He also called on military officials to stay away from politics while equally urging leaders of the various ethnic groups in the country to work for the unity of the nation.
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