Alleged diversion of palliative: Kano court sets aside bench warrant for arrest of LG Chair

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Alleged diversion of palliative: Kano court sets aside bench warrant for arrest of Council Chairman

A Kano Magistrates’ Court on Monday set aside an earlier bench warrant it issued for the arrest of the Chairman of Kumbotso Local Government Council, Kabiru Ado-Panshekara, for his failure to appear in court.

Ado-Panshekara was dragged to court by the Kano State Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission (PCACC) over alleged criminal breach of trust. The prosecution said Ado-Panshekara allegedly used his office as Chairman of the council, to include names not in the initial list submitted to him for distribution of the state’s COVID-19 palliatives.

The prosecution said the offence contravened Section 315 of the Penal Code and Section 26 of Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Law, 2008 (As amended). The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the court issued the warrant on May 13 when Ado-Panshekara failed to appear before court over the allegation.

When the matter came up on Monday, the Magistrate, Musa Ibrahim, said the court withdrew the earlier warrant after listening to the defence counsel, Abbas Haladu, who pleaded that Ado-Panshekara’s absence was not deliberate. Haladu told the court that the council chairman could not appear because he lost his uncle and his step-mother on May 13, just as he tendered an apology on behalf his client.

The absence of the defendant was not deliberate, it was due to a double tragedy that occurred in his family. “On May 13, the defendant lost his uncle and his step-mother who raised him; my lord, we are very sorry about his absence. “The defendant has been a very good public officer; he cannot disobey any public office,” he said. Haladu prayed the court to tamper justice with mercy, urging the court to set aside, the earlier bench warrant for his arrest.

The prosecution counsel, Mr Mahmoud Balarabe, did not oppose the application, as such the Magistrate, Ibrahim, withdrew the warrant and adjourned the case until May 27, for commencement of trial. (NAN)

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