Federal High Court in Abuja on Wednesday directed a member of the House of Representatives representing the Kaura-Namoda Federal Constituency of Zamfara State, Sani Umar Dangaladima, to return to court on December 4 to answer questions over his suretyship for Faisal Maina, who was said to have jumped bail in his ongoing money laundering trial.
Faisal is a son of a former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reformed Task Team, Abdulrasheed Maina, who is also facing separate charges of money laundering involving about N2bn before the same court.
Justice Okon Abang had on Tuesday summoned Dangaladima to appear in court to show cause why he should not be imprisoned if he failed to either produce Faisal or pay the N60m bail bond to the Federal Government.
In honour of the summons issued on Tuesday, the surety appeared before the court with his lawyer, Mohammed Sheriff, on Wednesday.
The lawyer said his client drove from Zamfara State upon hearing the news of his summons on Tuesday without waiting to be formally served with the court order.
He pleaded with the judge to grant a short adjournment to enable him to file his client’s defence.
The prosecuting counsel, Mr Mohammed Abubakar, did not oppose the application for adjournment.
Abubakar confirmed that the surety truly came to court on his own as the prosecution had yet to serve the summons on him.
Ruling, the judge said the lawmaker showed “tremendous respect” for the court by coming to court before he was served the summons.
He adjourned till December 4 for Faisal to open his defence and for the legislator to show cause why he should not be made to forfeit the N60m bail bond or be remanded in prison instead.
Faisal’s father, Maina, who is facing separate N2bn money laundering charges, is also said to have jumped bail.
The judge, Justice Abang, who is presiding over the father’s and the son’s trials, had revoked the bail granted them, ordered their arrest, and directed that their trials would proceed in absentia.
On Monday, the judge sent Maina’s surety, Senator Ali Ndume, to jail over his inability to produce the fleeing defendant.