Ex- Kaduna Governor puts up resistance as court orders interim property forfeiture.

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The Federal High Court in Abuja has ordered an interim forfeiture of 13 properties belonging to a former Governor of Katsina State, Dr. Ibrahim Shema.

Shema is being prosecuted on 22 counts of corruption and financial crimes by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) before the Katsina State High Court in Katsina.

But the Commission, through an ex parte application, filed before Justice Gabriel Kolawole of the Federal High Court in Abuja, on October 6, 2017, sought a temporary forfeiture of the said assets/properties “pending conclusion of investigation and determination of criminal charges that might be filed against the suspect.”

Justice Kolawole on November 1, 2017 granted the order of interim forfeiture of the properties directing the ex-governor to, within seven days of being aware of the court order, to apply by a motion on notice to the court order to either discharge or vary the orders.

He ruled that the order of forfeiture shall operate pending when fresh criminal charges would be instituted against Shema, named as suspect in the EFCC’s ex parte motion.

However, Shema, through his lead counsel, Mr. Joseph Daudu (SAN), on Monday filed a motion before the Federal High Court seeking an order setting aside the interim forfeiture order made on November 1.

He sought for an order discharging the interim order(s) of the court made on November 1, 2017 against his properties arising from the respondent’s application titled, ‘Ex Parte Originating Motion’ filed on October 6, 2017.

Daudu contended that the properties were legitimately acquired by his client, adding that the ex parte application through which the EFCC obtained the interim forfeiture order was a brazen attempt to acquire the ex-governor’s properties in the absence of a conviction.

The affected properties are a five-bedroomed duplex at Plot 1072, Asokoro, Abuja; a large farmland at Dutsi-Ma, Katsina State; 710 hectares of farmland at Chikaji, Igbabi-Kaduna; a fully-built duplex for residential purposes at House 5, Idanre Hills, off Kerang Spring, Maitama Extension, Abuja; and 1.05 hectares of land at Plot 352 Idu Industrial Layout, Abuja.

They also include an underdeveloped plot of land at Plot 8505, E35 Karaway, Abuja; two blocks of 12 flats consisting of three bedrooms each at 8, Attabara Street, Off Cairo Street, Wuse II, Abuja; and a bungalow of four bedrooms at 5, Sullubawa Road, Unguwan Sarki, Kaduna; and a bungalow of four bedrooms at 2, Safana Road, Kaduna.

The rest are a bungalow of four bedrooms at 8, Jaba Road, Kaduna, office chambers of three rooms at E2 Waff Road, Kaduna; and a fully built duplex of four bedroom for residential purposes at 5, Sambo Close, Unguwan Rimi, Kaduna; completed duplex with boys quarters, 4, Oba Akenzuwa Street, off Yakubu Gowon Road, Asokoro Abuja.

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