A High Court in Minna, the Niger state capital, has granted former governor of the state, Babangida Aliyu, and his ex-chief of staff, Umar Nasko, bail.
Both men had been remanded in prison by the court on Tuesday last week after the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission arraigned them on charges of corruption and fraud.
The former governor and Nasko are being tried for allegedly embezzling N3 billion of the state funds while in office. Aliyu and Nasko allegedly diverted about N1.09bn, which was 16 per cent shares of Niger State in the North South Power Company Limited.
The alleged crimes are believed to be in contravention of sections 97 and 312 of the Penal Code. One of the counts reads:
That you, Dr. Muazu Babangida Aliyu, being the governor (also known as chief servant) of Niger State from 2007 to 2015; Umar Mohammed Nasko, being the former Commissioner for Environment/Chief of Staff to Dr. Muazu Babangida Aliyu, sometime between April 7, 2015 and December 7, 2015 in Minna within the jurisdiction of this honourable court while being entrusted with dominion over money belonging to Niger State Government dishonestly converted to your own use the sum of N1,090, 000,000, which formed part of the proceeds of the sale of 16 per cent shares of the sale of Niger State in the North South Power Company Limited and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 312 of the Penal Code.