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Kano High Court sets date for arraignment of former governor Ganduje on bribery charges

Legal Battle Looms as Ganduje Faces Allegations of Corruption Totaling $413,000 and N1.38bn

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In a significant development marking the intersection of politics and justice in Nigeria, the Kano State High Court has scheduled April 17 for the highly anticipated arraignment of Dr. Abdullahi Ganduje, the former governor of Kano State and current National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC). Ganduje, along with his wife, son, and five others, faces a litany of charges related to bribery amounting to $413,000 and N1.38 billion.

According to the Judicial Summons issued by Justice Usman Na’aba, sitting in Courtroom 4, Ganduje and his co-defendants are expected to appear at 9 am to respond to eight counts of bribery allegations. The charges implicate Ganduje in acts of corruption allegedly committed during his tenure as governor, including soliciting and receiving kickbacks from contractors and misappropriating public funds.

The accusations against Ganduje have sparked a heated exchange between the Kano State Government and his camp. Governor Abba Yusuf, who succeeded Ganduje, has urged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to expedite the release of its findings on the alleged bribery video involving Ganduje. Yusuf’s call for transparency underscores the heightened scrutiny surrounding the case and the broader implications for accountability in Nigerian politics.

However, Ganduje’s camp has vehemently rejected the charges, dismissing them as politically motivated and beyond the jurisdiction of the state government. Chief Oliver Okpala, Ganduje’s Senior Special Assistant on Public Enlightenment, characterized the allegations as an “afterthought” and emphasized the primacy of federal agencies in prosecuting such matters. Okpala’s remarks underscore the legal complexities surrounding the case and the potential for jurisdictional disputes to shape its outcome.

The charges leveled against Ganduje span a range of alleged offenses, including official corruption, conspiracy, and misappropriation of public funds. The detailed allegations paint a damning picture of Ganduje’s tenure as governor, implicating him in schemes to solicit bribes, misuse government resources, and undermine the public trust.

Notably, the Kano State Attorney General, Muhuyi Magaji, invoked constitutional provisions empowering his office to file the charges against Ganduje and his co-defendants. Magaji’s assertion of legal authority highlights the state government’s determination to pursue accountability and uphold the rule of law, despite potential political ramifications.

As Ganduje prepares to face trial, the case has ignited debate over the intersection of law and politics in Nigeria. The outcome of the trial could have far-reaching implications for the country’s anti-corruption efforts, political dynamics, and democratic institutions. Amidst mounting public scrutiny and legal maneuvering, the impending arraignment of Ganduje underscores the fragility of Nigeria’s democratic governance and the imperative of upholding the principles of justice and accountability.

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