By Emmanuel Nduka
A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on Monday convicted and jailed the former Chairman of the Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT), Abdulrasheed Maina, for 8 years.
In the verdict given by Justice Okon Abang, the jail term totaling 61 years, will run concurrently.
Mr Maina was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on a 12-count charge on October 25, 2019, for allegedly stealing pension funds, and money laundering allegation.
According to the EFCC, Maina committed criminal offences punishable under sections 11(2) (a), 15(3), and 16(2) (c) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act, and also acted in breach of the Advance Fee Fraud Act.
On November 26, 2019, the court granted bail to Maina in the sum of N1bn, and ordered him to produce two sureties who must be serving senators.
The two sureties according to the court must be prepared for a N500m bond each, and must always be in court with the defendant at each adjourned date of the trial.
Maina complained that the bail condition was “stringent, excessive and impracticable” and subsequently applied for variation.
Subsequently on January 28, 2020, Justice Abang exercised discretion of the court and judiciously reduced Maina’s bail conditions to N500m with a serving Senator as surety.