by Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna
The Magistrate Court, Ibrahim Taiwo Road, in Kaduna State, has ruled that it has no jurisdiction to hear the case of cyber crimes instituted against a business man and former Governorship aspirant, Alhaji Jafaru Sa’ad, Galadimawan Ruwan Zazzau.
The Chief Magistrate, Hassan, gave the ruling on Wednesday evening after the prosecuting and defense counsels finished addressing the court on a case of cyber crime leveled against the defendant by the State Government.
Alhaji Jafaru, a former Governorship aspirant in Kaduna State, was arranged before the Chief Magistrate’s Court 1 on charges bordering on alleged abatement and conspiracy to commit Cyber crime by Governor Nasir El-Rufai-led Government.
In an interview with the lead counsel to the defendant, Barr Jafaru Abbas Ibrahim, and his partner, Barr Baba Lawal Aliyu, the duo said the alleged Cyber crime offence was a personal discussion.
“According to First Information Reports (FIR), the state commissioner of finance, Mohammed Bashir Saidu, called one Galadima in Zaria. After he finished the discussion, Bashir Saidu erroneously forgot and, maybe, called Galadimawan Ruwan, which is Jafaru Sa’ad the suspect. And when Sa’ad picked the call, Bashir Saidu apologized, and said it was an error but maybe forgot to off his call from his end on his GSM.
“And Jafaru Sa’ad, having had the kinds of conservation going on, decided to record it, and that was all,” they said.
Barr. Ibrahim, the lead counsel to the suspect, in an interview also said “In this case, the suspect, Galadimawan Ruwan, was arraigned before the Chief Magistrate’s Court for the offence of cyber crime Act 2015.
“We objected to the arraignment on grounds that magistrate has no jurisdiction to hear and even take cognisance of the offence.
“And the Chief Magistrate invited us to address him, and after addressing him, he agreed with our view that, Section 50 of the cyber crime Act 2015, expressed that ‘it’s only Federal High Court that is vested with exclusive jurisdiction to try anything under cyber crime,’ and that’s exactly what happened this afternoon. And magistrate, therefore, declined he has no jurisdiction,” Barr. Ibrahim said.
On the part of Kaduna State Government, even though the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Bayero Dari, declined comment on grounds that he was instructed not to say anything in the court, his opponent, however, said the only option left for them is to go to Federal High Court.
Barr. Ibrahim maintained that’ “Their next line of action naturally is either to prepare charges and take him to Federal High Court or terminate the case, because only Federal High Court can hear the matter, and that’s the court they don’t want to go, from their body language, because no court can hear it except them.”
The suspect, Jafaru Sa’ad, was arraigned on charges of abatement and conspiracy to commit cyber crime before Chief Magistrate Hassan in Court 1, Ibrahim Taiwo Road Kaduna, on Tuesday.
Findings revealed that the suspect, Jafaru Sa’ad, Galadimawan Ruwan, who differed with government on appointment of Zazzau Emirate tussle, was detained for over a week by the state for recording and releasing the said audio to the public, including security.
The audio conversation had to do with alleged discussion on the armed thugs that attacked the protest rally of the Organized Labour held in Kaduna recently, which went viral.