A Magistrates’ Court sitting in Kano issued a bench warrant on Wednesday,for the arrest of Malam Kabiru Ado-Panshekara, the Chairman of Kumbotso Local Government Council in the state for failure to appear before it over alleged diversion of COVID-19 palliatives .
Following the refusal of the defendant to appear in court to enter his plea over a charge of criminal breach of trust,the Presiding Judge, Magistrate Musa Ibrahim,issued the warrant .
Prosecution counsel, Mr Salisu Tahir told the court that on May 9, the defendant being the Chairman of Kumbotso Local Government Council was entrusted with the 1,632 forms for the distribution of COVID-19 palliatives meant for the downtrodden but he diverted some of the forms to persons who are not eligible to benefit the palliatives.
Tahir urged the court to issue a bench warrant to the defendant for his failure to appear before the court since he was properly served court sermon to appear on May 13 at about 9:00 am.
He said that the offence contravened section 315 of the penal code law and section 26 of Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Law 2008 (As amended).
The defense counsel, Mr Ibrahim Adamu, told the court that he does not know why the defendant was not in court, mentioning that one of his aides had earlier called that they were on their way.
Adamu requested the court to stood down for 30 minutes to enable the defendant appear in court to answer his plea.
The Presiding Magistrate, Musa Ibrahim Fagge, however, overruled the request and adjourned the case till May 27th, 2020.
Recall that the Kano state government ordered a total lockdown in the state and as part of measures to curtail the spread of the coronavirus disease ,thereby rolled out the palliative material distribution to the downtrodden to cushion the effects of lockdown.
Reported by: Fatimah Oyesanmi