A former Jigawa State Governor, Saminu Turaki, who has had a bench warrant issued on him since 2014, was arrested at a book launch in Abuja on Tuesday.
PREMIUM TIMES reported the arrest of the former governor on Tuesday afternoon and the EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, later confirmed the arrest.
Mr. Turaki was picked up at the venue of the public presentation of a book on Zakariya Maimalari, the first regular combatant officer in the Nigerian Army.
Although he has been declared wanted for the past three years, the former Jigawa governor still moved freely across Nigeria, including in public events.
The ex-governor, who was in office between 1999 and 2007, was declared wanted by the agency in 2014 after allegedly failing to present himself for trial since 2011.
He faces a 36-count charge bordering on criminal conspiracy, stealing, money laundering and misappropriation of public funds before the Federal High Court in Dutse, his state capital.
“The court had issued a warrant directing the Inspector General of Police or his officers, and the EFCC to arrest Turaki and bring him before the court,” an EFCC source told the News Agency of Nigeria.
“Justice S. Yahuza gave the order after Turaki consistently failed to attend trial.
“But attempts to execute the warrant failed as Turaki remained elusive.”
“On May 19, 2016, operatives of the commission acting on a tip-off had stormed the 16 Denis Osadebey Street Asokoro, Abuja, home of the former governor but he slipped through their hands.”
A source at the EFCC earlier told PREMIUM TIMES Mr. Turaki would not be released until he was taken to court on the day of the next hearing.