BY AMOS DUNIA, ABUJA – The Federal Government on Thursday told an Abuja High Court that it was turning an earlier co-accused Mr. Salisu Shuaib in the trial of former National Security Adviser (NSA), Col Sambo Dasuki to a witness.
The Federal Government brought a 25-count amended charge against Dasuki just as he was granted bail again by Justice Hussein Baba Yusuf of an Abuja high court after denying all the charges.
Dasuki, who served under former President Goodluck Jonathan, was re arraigned along with a former Minister of State for Finance, Bashir Yuguda, former Sokoto State governor, Attahiru Dalhatu Bafarawa, his son, Sagir Dalhatu and their family company, Dalhatu Investment Limited.
However, like the charge of Wednesday, former Director of Finance and Supply in the Office of NSA when Dasuki served as NSA, Mr Salisu Shuaib, was dropped from the list of accused persons.
Counsel to the federal government, Mr Rotimi Jacobs SAN, confirmed to newsmen that after the examination of the report of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in the alleged money diversion, it became imperative to drop Shuaib from the charge.
Jacobs said that instead of being a co-accused person, the former Director of Finance will now be used to as a witness to testify for Federal Government in the trial of the five defendants.
Like the re-arraignment of Wednesday, Justice Hussein Baba-Yusuf ordered that the five defendants should continue to enjoy the bail granted them in 2015 when they were first arraigned on the alleged offense.
Part of the charges against Dasuki was that he misappropriated and engaged in alleged criminal breach of trust by dishonestly transferring the sum of N3.5billion into the account of Dalhatu Investment Limited, an offense punishable under Section 315 of the Penal Code.
Yuguda was alleged to have dishonestly misappropriated a whooping sum of $9.8million, an equivalent of N1.9billion and another N200million he allegedly transferred to the bank account of Jabbama Ada Global Services, an offense punishable under Section 315 of the Penal Code Act.
On their part, Bafarawa, Sagir and Dalhatu Investment were charged with dishonestly receiving the sum of N4.6billion from the Office of Col Dasuki, an offense punishable under Section 97 of the Penal Code.
Aside the five defendants, prominent politicians were named in the charge as beneficiaries of the alleged Public fund diversion.
They are a former governor of Oyo State, Senator Rashidi Ladoja, former Chairman of the defunct National Republican Convention, Chief Tom Ikimi and one Robert Azibola, a cousin of Former President Jonathan as well as former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim.
However, all the five defendants pleaded not guilty to the amended charge dated May 11, 2018 and signed by Mr Chile Okoroma, Director of Legal and Prosecution Department of the EFCC.
Meanwhile, Justice Baba-Yusuf has adjourned trial of the defendants to July 9 and 10.