Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Ex-Taraba Governor Bags 14 Years In Jail

The Federal Capital Territory High Court has sentenced a former governor of Taraba state, Jolly Nyame, to 14 years in prison without an option of fine. The presiding judge, Justice Adebukola Banjoko, found the former governor guilty of corruption charges after been charged by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) with 41 counts of misappropriating the sum of N1.64bn in 2007.

Nyame was also found guilty of breach of trust involving his alleged fraudulent approval of N250m for the purchase of stationery and office equipment of December 30, 2004. Earlier, the court’s surroundings wore an unusual look with policemen checking vehicles on the road and at the gate leading to the court.

The trial had largely been stalled by the successive appeals by Nyame challenging the validity of the charges instituted against him by EFCC in July 2007. The trial began to gain some speed when the Supreme Court laid the defendant’s appeals against the validity of the charges to rest by dismissing it in 2016.

The prosecution’s case against Nyame revolved around alleged diversion of N1.64bn of Taraba state’s funds while he was governor. It alleged that the alleged criminal breach of trust was in breach of section 315 of the Criminal Code Act, the act of criminal misappropriation.

The prosecution led by Rotimi Jacobs (SAN) had on November 22, 2016, closed its case against Nyame after calling 14 witnesses. Nyame, testified in defence of himself and called additional three witnesses. The former governor decked in a dark brown kaftan with a cap entered the courtroom at about 9.02am.

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