Jonah Jang

By M. Peter – Jos

The Plateau State High Court has ruled that a former governor of the state, Jonah Jang has a case to answer in his ongoing trial on alleged illegal diversion and misappropriation of funds to the tune of N6.3bn.

The case filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) against Jang and Yusuf Pam, a former cashier in the office of the secretary to the state government, saw the presiding Judge, Justice Daniel Longji dismissing the “no case submission” filed by the defendants.

Justice Daniel Longji, who is retiring from service, ruled that both Jang and his alleged accomplice Mr. Yusuf Pam, has case to answer.

The anti-graft body had in a 17 count charge, alleged that Jang diverted the sum of N4.3bn being amount sent by the Central Bank of Nigeria, for empowering youths and women on small and medium enterprises, with another N2bn meant for the State Universal basic education (SUBEB).

But the former governor through their counsels filed application seeking the court to rule that the EFCC has no case against the accused persons and sought the court to rule in their favour on grounds that EFCC witnesses failed to prove the allegations against them.

However, Justice Daniel Longji ruled that; “The 1st accused (Jonah Jang), has a case to answer, it is also my candid view that the two accused person has a case to answer. However, I have to transfer the case file to the office of the Chief Judge of the State, for reassigning because I am retiring.”

Counsel to Jang, Edward Pwajok SAN who stated his client would appeal the ruling, applied for the court to sustained the earlier bail granted to the accused and Justice Longji granted the oral application, saying all conditions also subsists.

However, the counsel to EFCC, Rotimi Jacobs, represented by Gideon Azi expressed satisfaction about the ruling.