One of the defendants in the trial of former Governor Ibrahim Shehu Shema of Katsina state, has said that he was threatened, intimidated and harassed by the operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC in the process of obtaining his statement to implicate the former governor.
At the last adjourned date, Alhaji Ibrahim Dankaba, the 4th defendant in the trial had told Justice Maikaita Bako of the state high court that his statement to the EFCC during interrogation was obtained under duress.
Others standing trial alongside Shema and Dankaba are former Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Sani Makana and former Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Lawal Safana.
While cross-examining the EFCC witness, Abubakar Buba, Counsel to Ibrahim, Mr. Napoleon Idenala, told the witness that his client was threatened, intimidated by Buba and his senior colleague, one Habu Fari Mohammed.
But Buba denied the allegation, saying he was not aware of such development.
While giving evidence, Buba had told the court that the 4th defendant wrote his statement voluntarily.
He said he was part of the team that interrogated the defendant, adding that he was interviewed based on new discoveries in the allegations against him.
“In the statement, the defendant erroneously wrote January 25th, 2015 instead of January 25th, 2016, which I corrected before he signed and I counter-signed. It is not true that the statement was obtained under duress”, Buba said.
But while under cross-examination, Buba consistently denied some questions Idenala put to him on the kind of treatment meted out to his client before the statement was obtained.
Idenala had among other questions asked, if Buba was aware that his client was detained in a police station in Katsina State for two days when a search was conducted in his house and if he was aware of the health condition of his client who was taken to clinic while in detention’, if he was aware that some operatives of the EFCC and well-armed policemen stormed his house in Katsina during a search operation.