The auditor general for local government, Yobe State, Alhaji Idris Yahaya, is to spend five years in prison, following his conviction, yesterday, by Justice Muhammad Lawu Lawan of the Yobe State High Court.
He was convicted after being found guilty of a one count charge of criminal misappropriation to the tune of N19.9 million preferred against them by the Maiduguri Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
In a press statement signed and issues by head, media and publicity, EFCC, Wilson Uwujaren, which was made available to LEADERSHIP in Damaturu, Yobe State capital, stated that, Yahaya received funds from the Office of the Auditor General for Local Government and Emirate Affairs, Yobe State, for the purchase of an official vehicle, a 2015 Toyota Corolla, and diverted part of the money to his personal use.
According to the statement, the one count charge reads: ‘’That you, Yahaya Lawal Idris, being the Auditor General for Local Government, Yobe State, between the 20th to 21st day of May, 2017 at Damaturu, Yobe State within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, received the sum of N19,900,000 via your personal account number 1001480930 with account name Alhaji Yahaya Idris domiciled in United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) from the Local Government Audit Account Number 5030030060 domiciled in Fidelity Bank Plc for the purchase of a brand new Toyota Corolla 2015 Model, did dishonestly misappropriated the gross sum of N10 million.”
The statement also said that the convict who was first arraigned on Wednesday, November 9, 2022, had pleaded not guilty to the charges, setting the stage for his full trial. In the course of the trial, counsel for the EFCC, Mukhtar Ali Ahmed called four witnesses and tendered documents which were admitted in evidence.
Delivering judgement yesterday, Justice Lawan held that the prosecution has proved the case against the defendant and convicted him as charged. He consequently sentenced him to five years imprisonment with an option of fine.
The judge further directed the convict to pay the sum of N10.1 million in restitution to Yobe State Government through the EFCC or serve additional two years in prison.