Free Turaki from Detention, Counsel Tells EFCC

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Ugo Aliogo

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has been urged to free the former governor of Jigawa State, Sen Ibrahim Turaki.

Turaki, who was governor between 1999 and 2007, was recently picked up at the venue of the public presentation of a book on Brigadier Zakariya Maimalari, the first regular combatant officer in the Nigerian Army.

The counsel to Turaki, Olusegun Jolaawo, in a letter made available to THISDAY, stated that Turaki has been in detention since he was arrested by operatives of the commission on July 4, in execution of a warrant issued by the Federal High Court in Jigawa State and has since been in custody.

According to the letter, the warrant upon which the former governor was arrested was in respect of a suit with no: FHC/DT/CR/2017 of the Federation Republic of Nigeria vs Sen. Ibrahim Turaki and Federal High Court, Dutse, the Jigawa State.

It also stated that there is no record before the court of a motion of notice challenging the jurisdiction of the court.
The letter further noted that an amended notice of appeal has been filed and the record of the appeal was compiled and transmitted which entered on March 21, at the Court of Appeal, Kaduna Division.

“We have also filed our appellant’s brief while waiting a date for hearing of the appeal, in view of the fact of the pendency of the motion for stay at the trial court. The fact that the appeal has been entered, the tradition is for parties to await the outcome of the appeal before taking any step to execute the process.

“The issuance which is being challenged, so as to avoid prejudicing or overreaching the decision of the Court of Appeal, and that of the trial Court in respect of the motion of stay of execution of the warrant.

“Despite the above, our client has been arrested and detained at your headquarters since July 4, without been brought before the court to determine what order will be made by the court in the circumstance. His continued detention is in breach of his fundamental rights enshrined in Chapter IV of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) and is unacceptable with all due respect.”