Former Governor of Plateau state and senator representing Plateau North in the senate, Jonah Jang has been arraigned before a Jos high court today (Wednesday) by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) for an alleged misappropriation of N6.3 billion.
Senator Jang was a governor of Plateau state between 2007 and 2015 within which period he allegedly misappropriated the said funds.
Jang, who was arraigned alongside one Yusuf Gyang Pam by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on a 12 count charge, pleaded not guilty to all the counts.
Counsel to Senator Jang, Robert Clark (SAN) therefore submitted that Jang should be granted bail on self recognition, owing to the fact that he has been a governor of two states, a serving Senator and that he has been granted administrative bail five times, which he had faithfully honoured by the EFCC.
Lead Counsel to the EFCC Rotimi Jacob (SAN) however objected to Jang’s application for bail, asking the court to look at the seriousness of the offence, the nature of the charge, the evidence available, the probability of the accused appearing constantly in the trial and the weight of the punishment.
According to Rotimi (SAN) Sections 36(5) which provides that everybody who is charged with a criminal offence shall be presumed to be innocent until he is proven guilty is not in line with the Law that governs the criminal prosecution against Sen. Jang and Yusuf Pam.
He said, “Any offence that exceeds 3 years should not be treated as ordinary and presumable for bail.”
But after listening to arguments of both parties, presiding judge, Justice Daniel Longji said he would need enough time to analyze the arguments for and against the bail application in comparison with the charges. He therefore adjourned the case to the 24th May, 2018 for ruling on the bail application.
He said, ‘There is a situation here where the Law becomes an axe. I have not studied the charges and I cannot use my personal knowledge of the accused person(s) to ask him to go on bail.
“They should be remanded in prison custody pending the ruling on his bail on Thursday next week.”