Alleged fraud: EFCC Withdraws amended charges against Kano businessman, Zaura

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By Maduabuchi Nmeribeh, Kano

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Wednesday, withdrew amended charges levelled against Kano businessman and politician, Abdulssalam Abdulkarim Zaura.

The Presiding Judge of the Kano Federal High Court 2, Justice Muhammad Nasir Yunusa, accepted the request by EFCC to withdraw its amended charges against Zaura in the alleged fraud case before the Court.

The defendant, popularly known as A.A. Zaura, was the senatorial candidate of APC for Kano Central Senatorial District in the 2023 general elections.

Our Correspondent reports that the EFCC had sought the withdrawal of its amended charges against A.A. Zaura, during Wednesday’s sittings, having failed to produce before the Court, prosecution witnesses to prove the criminal charges against the defendant.

Zaura is being held by the anti-graft agency for alleged financial fraud in the sum of $1.2 million deal in a snail-pace retrial involving a Kuwait national.

At the resumption of the matter before Justice Mohammad Nasir Yunusa on Wednesday, Counsel to EFCC, Aisha A.T. Habeeb, told the court that the withdrawal of the application already served on the defendant became necessary to forestall further prolongation of the case.

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However, A.A Zaura, through his Counsel, Isyaka M. Dikko, had filed a Motion on Notice, seeking to strike out the amended charge for lack of merit.

He also prayed the Court to stay proceedings of the trial pending the hearing and determination of an application on a related matter before the Supreme Court.

Our Correspondent reports that the application before the Supreme Court is challenging the Appeal Court judgement that ordered the retrial after the defendant was discharged and acquitted.

However, the EFCC lawyer cited previous matters that disallowed criminal trials and allowed concurrent proceedings.

In his ruling, Justice Yunusa ordered the parties to supply the court with the necessary documents to back their claims.

The Judge adjourned the case to July 13, 2023, for ruling on the application.

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