Dasuki faces illegal arms charge today

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The Federal Government will Tuesday (today) arraign a former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.), on only one- count of illegal possession of firearms before a Federal High Court in Abuja, for allegedly being in possession of firearms without license, The PUNCH has learnt.

Our correspondent also confirmed on Monday that the former NSA, who was scheduled to appear before Justice Adeniyi Ademola, had last week filed his bail application in anticipation that the court will hear it immediately after taking his plea on Tuesday (today).

A reliable source, who had a copy of the charge in his possession, said its content was exactly the same with the statement recently released by the Department of State Services to announce that it had preferred a charge against the former NSA.

Dasuki’s counsel, Mr. Ahmed Raji, SAN, confirmed to our correspondent on Monday that the prosecution preferred only one count against the accused person.

“It’s only one count. It’s a count relating to possession of firearms without license,” Raji said.

The DSS had said in its statement that it charged Dasuki with possession of firearms without license, an offence punishable under section 27(I)(a)(I) of the Firearms Act Cap F28 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004, based on the evidence so far obtained.

Findings by our correspondent showed that the Federal Ministry of Justice had since taken over the case.

It was learnt that the trial ought to have commenced last week but it could not go on because of the directive of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Mahmmud Mohammed, to various heads of court not to sit throughout the week to enable lawyers and interested judges to participate in the just-concluded one week-long Annual Bar Conference of the Nigerian Bar Association.

The DSS had on July 16, 2015 searched the ex-NSA’s residences in Asokoro, Abuja and Sokoto, where its operatives claimed to have recovered seven high calibre rifles, including magazines and military gears in the houses located at 13, John Khadya Street, and 46, Nelson Mandela Street, both at Asokoro, Abuja; and 3, Sabon Birni Road, Gwiwa Area, Sokoto, Sokoto State.

The agency also said that it recovered 12 new vehicles, including five bullet-proof cars from Dasuki’s house, the ownership of which could not be explained by the embattled former NSA, and which investigators believed must have been purchased with proceeds of corruption.

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