On Monday, June 22, 2020, Justice Aisha Kumaliya of the Borno State High Court, convicted and sentenced, Assistant Director in Borno State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Usman Abaji to six months imprisonment with N600, 000 option of fine for obstruction of justice.
The Director in Borno State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Abaji was prosecuted by the Maiduguri Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC on one- count charge of willful obstruction of the Commission to exercise its powers to investigate and prosecute in a matter involving one Ibrahim Goni Bama, contrary to Section 38 (2) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Establishment) Act.
They arrested Ibrahim Bama as evidence of the investigations linked him with financial crimes but was later released on administrative bail to Abaji, who stood as a guarantor for him. Upon discovery that Bama had ran away Commission alerted Abaji, his guarantor who failed to produce Bama.
The one-count charge filed against Abaji : “That you, Usman Abaji of Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Borno State, sometime in October, 2019 at Maiduguri, Borno State within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, did willfully obstruct the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in exercise of its power to investigate/prosecute Ibrahim Goni Bama by entering a bond for the sum of N25 million to produce him before the EFCC at every date he is required until the six cases against him are finally disposed of; which you failed to do so when called upon by the EFCC.
“You thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 38(2) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (Establishment) Act 2004 and punishable under section 38(2)(b) of the same Act.”
He pleaded guilty
Justice Kumaliya, found Abaji guilty as charged and sentenced him to six-month imprisonment with N600, 000 option of fine.