EFCC has described as “shocking and unacceptable”, the ruling by Justice Bello Abbas of the Sokoto State High Court which on July 31 discharged and acquitted a former governor of Sokoto State Attahiru Dalhatu Bafarawa and four others of a 22 count charge of conspiracy, criminal misappropriation, theft and receiving of stolen funds.
In a statement on Tuesday by its spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, the EFCC said it was unfortunate that despite the nine witnesses it presented before the court, the judge failed to convict the accused persons
Those charged along with Bafarawa but acquitted by the court were Beedash Nigeria Limited, Nasdabap Nigeria Limited, Alhaji Nasiru Bafarawa and Alhaji Salihu Gummi.
“In the course of the trial, the EFCC had called nine witnesses and presented several documents that were admitted in evidence while the defendants called only six witnesses.
“Surprisingly, Justice Abbas discharged and acquitted the accused persons of all counts on the premise that the evidence presented by the prosecution were mere hearsay and that there was no documentary evidence to back up the claim of witnesses.
“The commission believes that the judge erred in law and has mandated its counsel to immediately appeal the ruling at the Court of Appeal.
“The judgment of Justice Abbas is the climax in the series of twists and turns that the trial had witnessed over the last nine years or so.”
Meanwhile, Bafarawa, who is aspiring to be President in 2019 on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, thanked Nigerians for believing in him and also the judiciary for being the last hope of the common man.