Fraud: Ex-minister Turaki pleads not guilty, granted bail

Kabiru Turaki

A Federal High Court in Abuja has granted bail to a former Minister for Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs, Kabiru Turaki.

Mr Turaki, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, was arraigned on Monday by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on 16 counts of fraud-related charges.

Also arraigned alongside him is his former special assistant, Sampson Okpetu, and two firms allegedly owned by Okpetu – Samtee Essentials Limited and Pasco Investment Limited.

Turaki was minister from 2013 to 2015. He was also the Supervising Minister of Labour from 2014 to 2015.

In the charge marked FHC/ABJ/CR/61/2020, EFCC alleged that Turaki used the two companies belonging to his aide to illegally siphon funds.

The defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Following their application, Justice Inyang Ekwo admitted them to bail and adopted the terms and conditions attached to the administrative bail earlier granted them by the EFCC.

The judge directed the EFCC to transfer terms of the bail to the court’s registry.

He barred the defendants from travelling outside the country without the permission of the court.

The case was adjourned until June 22 for commencement of trial.