About 72 hours after the verdict of the Supreme Court, which okayed the trial of former governor of Katsina State, Alhaji Ibrahim Shehu Shema, the ex-governor has come out to openly declare that he is not opposed to an open and fair trial.
According to a statement from the Head of Media of the former governor, Olawale Oluwabusola, Alhaji Shema, also a lawyer, is always ready to defend himself in court adding that his grouse has been against what was playing out in the allegations and trial by ambush.
Shema had approached the court to challenge his trial by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, saying he is entitled to be given the proof of evidence against him in the matter and other documents filed by the commission to enable him prepare his defence properly.
Last week, the apex court gave the anti-graft agency the go- ahead to prosecute the former governor.
The apex court, in it judgment delivered by Justices Sidi Bage, said it was satisfied that Shema has a case to answer.
But the court, however, in a minority judgement delivered by Justice Ejembi Eko, agreed that he should be provided with statement of claims, bank statements, documents and list of witnesses relevant to the case.
Oluwabusola said, “The former governor of Katsina state, Alhaji Ibrahim Shema has received the news of the judgement of the Supreme Court as a welcome development with the decision of the court affirming his right to be provided with the statement of claims, bank statements, document and list of witnesses relevant to the charges filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and Katsina State Government.
“Ibrahim Shehu Shema has never been opposed to fair trial. His grouse has been against what was playing out in the allegations and trial by ambush.
“Now that the highest court in the land has spoken, he expects the EFCC and the Katsina State government to comply with and provide necessary documents to prepare his defence as provided by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“The former governor is always ready to defend himself and prove his innocence on universal principles of rule of law and fair hearing against the politically motivated smear campaign of calumny being orchestrated by the Katsina state government using agencies of state and federal government as tools to cow the opposition”.