Image

Lai Mohammed Caught In 10 Billion Naira Fraud Scandal, As ICPC Raids NBC |The Republican News

Minister of information and culture, Lai Mohammed

by Our Reporter

The Independent Corrupt Practices And other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has raided the offices of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) over N10billion  fraud perpetrated under the supervision of Nigeria’s Information Minister Mr Lai Mohammed and suspended Director-General of the commission, Mr Ishaq Modibbo Kawu.
Sources to Pointblanknews.com revealed that a N10 Billion loan released to the commission since December last year was diverted to a private account and has so far yielded interests estimated in excess of One Billion Nara already.

According to the source, following a tip off, the ICPC early last week  raided the commission’s headquarters in Abuja and impounded several files, computers and gadgets belonging to the commission.

Lai Mohammed since assumption of office as a minister in Mohammed Buhari’s government has allegedely been enmeshed in a series of financial scams including the recent has jeopardized the Nigeria’s Digital Switch Over (DSO) Project that has been operating in fits and starts since 2016.

Pointblanknews.com reported that the Minister in 2015 admitted extorting N13.5 Million from the NBC to embark on a foreign trip.

Investigation by our correspondent revealed that N10 Billion was a loan provided to help offset debts owed to contractors who have been building infrastructure to enable the DSO project commence in the earnest.

The DSO is the process of upgrading the present analogue television broadcast systems to digital terrestrial television (DTT). The project is founded on an international protocol signed by Nigeria among several countries in the Group A batch of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in Geneva in 2006. The protocol gave a deadline of July, 2015 to fully switch over from analogue to digital.

Almost all countries of the world have since eradicated analogue television broadcast and transited to the digital platform leaving Nigeria.

Nigeria first started the process in 2008 but made no progress. In 2016 the Nigerian Government faced with the vulnerabilities of solely operating an obsolete technology relaunched the program with fanfare in Jos Plateau State, but it was quickly marred with scandals of fraud and embezzlement of funds involving the Minister Mr Mohammed and the then DG NBC DG Mr Ishaq Modibbo Kawu

Mr Kawu was suspended from office and he’s still facing criminal charges at the Federal Court in Abuja, Capital of Nigeria while Mr Mohammed who approved the scam still seats pretty in office.

The project again stalled and contractors who had worked on the project since commencement with belief that payment will be made timely to enable then service bank obligations and sustain the tempo of the project were unable to continue following the reported fraud which led to the Nigerian government halting further action on the project to investigate the scams.

But the NBC it was gathered raised alarm on the likely difficulties to be faced by Nigeria if the project continues to stalemate. These included local television stations not been able to access spare parts any longer for their equipment.

Given the urgency, Nigeria’s Federal Executive Council (FEC) presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari approved the sum of N10 Billion Naira as loan to the NBC with a total of N9.4 billion to be used as payment to contractors and N600 Million as recurrent fund for the NBC to prosecute project.

But the contractors never got the money even though it was fully released in the first week of January until two weeks ago when they began to receive payments in trickles. In fact, the money never even got to the NBC Accounts- even now!

Rather Mr Mohammed was said to have allegedly entered into some dubious arrangement with officials of the hierarchy of the finance ministry to divert the money to an interest yielding account for an initial 90 days which was again rolled over in the month of March for a second time until the contractors became restive.

Even the decision to hurriedly liquidate the money from fixed

deposit and pay the contractors it was gathered as a result of a tip off to the Minister that the contractors may have contacted the anti-graft agencies.

Indeed one of the companies was said to have alerted the ICPC and EFCC  to complain that the NBC was fraudulently withholding the money. But the ICPC which swung into action immediately after receiving the complaint was said to have discovered during its preliminary investigation that the money never got to the NBC.

Beside, even the N600million approved for the commission to run the project has been coveted by Mr Mohammed and diverted to the ministry where he contrived  a scheme to personally and directly control the funds.

He quickly set up a ministerial task force on DSO – ploy that not only effectively usurped the role of the NBC and Digiteam a body of experts already put in place by Nigeria’s federal government to liaise with the NBC with an ultimatum to deliver the DSO Project latest be June 2022, but also ensured the money was not subject to audit and official control of the ministry. Taking no chances Mr Mohammed appointed himself the Chairman of the task force  and unilaterally assumed the power of disbursing the N9.4 Billion and also appropriating the N600 Million which was clearly marked for the NBC.

Among the five contractors listed for payment are Messrs Inview to collect N908,000,000, Messrs Intergrated Television services (ITS)  to collect N3,773,046,000;…Messrs Pinnacle Communications 1,936,572,305 Messrs SES 2,148,762,245 and Messrs Outsource with about N800,000,00.

Mr Mohammed is known to have an undue interest in Inview managed by one Toyin Zubairu said to be his business patner.

The said Zubairu was the CEO of the Defunct HITV, a company Mr Mohammed was implicated in as Legal Adviser before it was mismanaged to liquidation by Zubairu. Mr Mohammed has scheduled Zubairu’s Inview for a payment of N908 Million in the N9.4billion just removed from the private interest yielding account.

Reliable industry sources informed Pointblanknews.com that the N908M payment is a fraud as Messrs Inview had already been paid N1.2 Billion for the same services in 2015.

Beside, Mr Mohammed was alleged to have used his power as the  minister to intimidate the NBC into paying N350 Million to Mr Zubairu as Digital Access Fee for accessing a platform which the commission paid Zubairu to build for it.

“It’s like I pay a contractor to build a house for me. Then when I moved into the house a bully comes and began forcing me to start paying rent to the contractor for occupying my own house- even after I have fully paid him for his work as contractor” a distraught service provider in the DSO project lamented to Pointblanknews on Monday after the ICPC raid.

Beside the ICPC, it is reliably learnt that Mr Mohammed had always used the NBC as a personal cash cow and had been crafty enough using his political influence to make DGs of the NBC fall guys whenever the scams were busted.

First was the Emeka Mbah, DG between 2013 to 2016 before he was arrested and detained by the EFCC for an alleged N15 Billion Fraud. He was alleged to have kept the said N15 Billion in Zenith Bank to generate interest rather than follow the rule of the Treasury Single Account Policy of the government.

Mr Mbah was able to prove to the EFCC that he did nothing without the highest approval. He produced evidences of minutes of meeting with Mr Mohammed presiding where it was agreed to lodge the money in Zenith Bank allegedly as guarantee to contractors engaged by the commission to produce Set-top Boxes to be used for the DSO Program. He produced the Minister’s approvals .

Curiously the EFCC spared Mr Mohammed who approved the dubious lodgement and Mr Mbah was hauled before a federal court in Abuja to face charges bothering on corruption! The scandal led to his sack by the President Buhari who immediately appointed Mr Kawu on the recommendation of Mr Mohammed. Mr Kawu and Mohammed are both from Kwara State in North Central Nigeria.

But just two years into his tenure Mr Kawu’s quickly came to grief when another  scandal of N2.5 Billion involving Mr Mohammed erupted. A private company Pinnacle Communications was surreptitiously awarded N2.5 Billion on the approval of Mr Mohammed for no work done whatsoever. It was called “seed money” to enable the company prepare to provide digital telecommunication services to the DSO project.

Mr Mohammed who at the time was a graduate of 40 years and a lawyer with 30 years’ experience quickly claimed he was deceived by Mr Kawu into signing the approval for the whooping N2.5 Billion. He claimed he really knew nothing about the scam and only relied on the recommendations of Mr Kawu. But Mr Kawu and Mr Lucky Omoluwa, CEO of Pinnacle hotly disputed Mr Mohammed’s claim of ignorance. They presented proof that there was series of meetings between the NBC, Pinnacle Communications and Mr Mohammed who presided at all the meetings. Beside he went on foreign trips sponsored by the contractors and still collected official allowances and estacodes for the same trips.

Infact, Mr Kawu was said to have been convinced that the decision to originate the memo followed a verbal directive from Mr Mohammed who wasted no time in rushing to approve the money without raising any questions.

Sources at the commission reveal that N150 Million of the money paid to Pinnacle was traced to the personal account of Jimi Mohammed, son of the Minister now a member of  the Lagos State House of Assembly.

But despite the overwhelming evidence of his culpability, like  what happened in the previous case, Mr Mohammed is confident that his political weight and connections as a major player in the ruling party will again save him.

Lai Mohammed this time became arrogant and was reported to have thoroughly harassed the investigators from the ICPC and several times either dictated the scope and mode of interrogation or even refused to be interrogated all together.

Expectedly the ICPC arraigned only Mr Kawu and even recommended his suspension from office. Mr Mohammed a co-suspect in the scam was not only excluded but was actually reported to have desperately worked to secure presidential approval on the ICPC recommendation to suspend his fellow suspect with dispatch.

Observers are concerned that the President Buhari’s administration notoriously known  for treating allegations of corruption from cronies with “deodorant” and those of opposition members with harsh “pesticides” may again weigh in and allow Mr Mohammed escape once more with the glaring cases of corruption that is presently raging.

Mr Kawu a brilliant journalist, veteran broadcaster and respected ace columnist of several years standing is still embroiled in the criminal trials, desperate to establish his innocence while Mr Omoluwa, the Chairman of Pinnacle Communications a successful business man of several years wasn’t that lucky. He died in the course of the prosecution with his name tainted. Mr Mohammed has remained tenaciously on his seat to be engaged in several other financial scams confident that he’s a sacred cow in a so called anti-corruption government that has so far glossed over every reported case of corruption reported against its high ranking appointees. (Pointblanknews.com)

Continue reading
Image

BREAKING NEWS: Bukola Saraki Arrested By EFCC Over Renewed Allegations Of Corruption |The Republican News

Mr Saraki, a former Kwara State governor, was detained on Saturday, sources familiar with the development said.

By Taiwo-Hassan Adebayo 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has held a former president of the Nigerian Senate, Bukola Saraki, in custody over allegations of theft and money laundering, PREMIUM TIMES can report.

Mr Saraki, a former Kwara State governor, was detained on Saturday, sources familiar with the development said, a situation that may trigger another episode of troubles for the politician.

As senate president between 2015 and 2019, Mr Saraki spent a considerable time facing allegations of corruption and false declaration of assets. He was acquitted by the Supreme Court in June 2018.

However, in his new case with the EFCC, PREMIUM TIMES understands, Mr Saraki is to answer questions over alleged theft and laundering of public funds using a network of cronies and proxy companies.

The suspected proxies, who executed purported contracts for Kwara State under Mr Saraki, allegedly made returns, for many years, to the former governor, forming an organised network of dirty money flow.

The funds involved were huge, running into hundreds of millions in naira and hundreds of thousands in foreign currencies at various times, sources said.

Anti-graft investigators have obtained a list of the proxy companies involved and analysed a pattern of suspicious transactions between them and Mr Saraki, PREMIUM TIMES learnt.

One of them has been reportedly responsible for funding Mr Saraki’s lifestyle, including paying over a hundred million to settle the bills for rent and renovation of Mr Saraki’s Maitama residence, PREMIUM TIMES’ investigation showed, based on interviews with persons familiar with the property. (PremiumTimes)

More details later…

Continue reading
Image

IGP Baba Usman Orders Internal Review Of Allegations Against DCP Abba Kyari |The Republican News

Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba

The Nigerian Police Force has reacted to the allegation of fraud involving super cop, Abba Kyari.

The Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba, in a statement, ordered an “internal review of the allegations” against a Deputy Commissioner of Police, Abba Kyari, by a United States court.

The police made this known in a statement on Thursday, signed by the Force Public Relations Officer, CP Frank Mba.

Hushpuppi Narrates How He Paid DCP Abba Kyari To Jail Disloyal Fraud Gang Member |The Republican News

Earlier, reports emerged that the United States District Court for the Central District of California alleged that a suspect, Ramon Abbas, aka Hushpuppi, used Kyari to arrest and jail a co-conspirator, Chibuzo Vincent, after the latter threatened to expose an alleged $1m fraud committed against a Qatari businessman.

The Nigeria Police statement was titled, ‘Alleged Indictment Of DCP Abba Kyari: Inspector-General Of Police Orders A Review Of The Information’

It read, “Sequel to the receipt of allegations and indictment processes from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) against one of the personnel of the Nigeria Police Force, DCP Abba Kyari, the Inspector General of Police IGP Usman Alkali Baba psc (+), NPM, fdc has ordered an internal review of the allegations.

How DCP Abba Kyari Flew To Dubai Spent Stupendous Lifestyle With Hushpuppi —FBI |The Republican News

“The Nigeria Police Force reaffirms its commitment to the pursuit of justice and the strengthening of its professional relationship with the FBI and other international partners.

“Further developments on this case will be communicated to members of the public accordingly.”

Continue reading
Image

BREAKING: Ghana Security Agents Intercept 978 Bars Of Gold Worth N8.2b Allegedly Belonging To ex-Governor Yari Of Zamfara |RN

Sahel Online paper has reported that, a total of  978 Bars of Gold which allegedly belong to the former Governor of Zamfara state Abdul Aziz Abubakar Yari, valued approximately at 8.2 Billion Naira, has been intercepted at Kokota International Airport Accra Ghana by the Ghanian Customs official’s.

Sahel online reporter Peter Amu, reported that, The Bars of Gold was carefully sealed in 9 Cartons of Rothmans en route to United Arab Emirates UAE in Company of one of the former Governor Lagos based loyalist.

At as the time of filling this report, Ghanian Anti corruption agencies are carrying out an investigation. Meanwhile, Mr. Jide Oke who accompany the suspicious Bars of Gold is currently under the Airport detention facilities.

Recall some years back, the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC uncovered a five Star Hotel in Lagos which allegedly belong to the former Governor of Zamfara state Abdul Aziz Abubakar Yari. In the process, an investigation shows that, Yari built the Hotel with Zamfara state bailouts funds that was meant to pay salaries and outstanding retired Civil Servants gratuities. (Sahel Online)

Continue reading
Image

Fraud In Buhari’s Gov’t As N1.5 Trillion, $9m Traced To NIMASA Boss, Bashir Jamoh’s Personal Accounts |RN

United Kingdom investigators have bursted another corruption scandal in the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration involving the Managing Director, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Bashir Jamoh, where various sums including N1.5 Trillion and another $9,557,312.50 have been traced to his personal accounts.

Pointblanknews.com investigation revealed that N1.5 Trillion was found in a Fidelity Account 4020949836 linked to Bashir Jamoh, who is also the father-in-law of Sabiu Yusuf aka Tunde, President Muhammadu Buhari’s Personal Assistant.

Curiously, the Fidelity account with N1, 505,890,450,000.67 has Hamza Ibrahim Jamoh with BVN 22151837650 and Cell phone number 08034517410. While the BVN number revealed a different identity, the cell phone linked to the account is linked to the DG of NIMASA, Jamoh, according to Pointblanknews.com investigations.

Pointblanknews.com investigations revealed that the N1.5trillion was after few months cleared from the account to avoid investigations on the lodgment of such huge amount.

In a four page document titled due diligent report on Bashiru Yusuf Jamoh, the Director-General NIMASA, which pointblanknews.com has copies, the report exposed another lodgment of $9,557,312.50 into Access Bank account 0710814478 also belonging to him.

The investigation also exposed other infractions by the agency’s boss which also include award of contracts to companies which he has interest in.

The investigation, according to the report focused on fraud, money laundering and breach of the Nigeria code of conduct act. This same investigation, it stated spans across all the Agencies under the Ministry of Transport having started with the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA.
GLOBAL INVESTIGATORS UNITED KINGDOM, the investigation agency that signed the report investigated the bank transactions of Alhaji Jamoh focusing on inflows/Credit and Debits on his bank statements.
It found the transaction’s records of BASHIR YUSUF JAMOH showing the payment of $9,557,312.50 (Nine million, five hundred and fifty-seven thousand, three hundred and twelve dollars and fifty cents) into his personal accounts from Central Bank of Nigeria in violation of the Treasury Single Account, TSA.

“Most baffling is that CBN transferred millions of dollars into the personal account of BASHIR YUSUF JAMOH.
“Records shows the withdrawal of $5,425,200.00 (Five million, Four hundred and twenty-five thousand and two hundred dollars only) by CASH WITHDRAWAL from ACCESS Bank, Burma Road, Apapa, Lagos.
“BASHIR YUSUF JAMOH set up a company TALENT EXPERTISE INTL. LIMITED with RN: 1488830 to solicit for jobs from NIMASA. Being the director of a company and awarding contract to own company in violation of the code of conduct act section 3 part of the Third Schedule of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and code of conduct for public officers involved in procurement, Part X1, section 57, Sub-section (2) of the Procurement Act, 2007.”

According to the report, BIXBY OIL LIMITED has also paid money into his account, and the following payment into the account of the company was captured.
BANK: GUARANTEE TRUST BANK PLC
ACCOUNT NO: 0423084514
ACCOUNT NAME: TALENT EXPERTISE INTL. LIMITED CUSTOMER ADDRESS: 6, EKET CLOSE, AREA 8 GARKI, FCT ABUJA CURRENCY: NAIRA
TRANSACTION DATE: 06/06/2019
TRANSACTION AMOUNT: N37,516,363.63 MILLION TRANSACTION DESCRIPTION: CREDIT/INFLOW
FROM: R 304741016 DEPARTMENT NIMASA
PURPOSE: COURSE FEE FOR CAPACITY BUILDING TRAINING TRANSACTION REF: 930474101602050146461375163636
SERIOUS SUSPICIOUS TRANSACTIONS
ACCESS BANK PLC
ACCOUNT NO: 0710814478
CURRENCY: UNITED STATES DOLLARS
TRANSACTION DATE: 05/02/2019
TRANSACTION AMOUNT: $9,557,312.50 MILLION TRANSACTION DESCRIPTION: CREDIT/INFLOW
FROM: B/O CBN NIMASA CURRENT COLLATION US TRANSACTION REF: S069035198A701 INFLW/GT19/07972
ACCESS BANK PLC
ACCOUNT NO: 0710814478
CURRENCY: UNITED STATES DOLLARS
TRANSACTION DATE: 20/02/2019
TRANSACTION AMOUNT: $5,425,200.00 MILLION TRANSACTION DESCRIPTION: DEBIT/WITHDRAWAL WITHDRAWN BY: BASHIR YUSUF JAMOH BY CASH PMNT @ BURMA ROAD APAPA BRANCH
TRANSACTION REF: 6464979
BANK: ACCESS BANK PLC

ACCOUNT NO: 0710814478
CURRENCY: UNITED STATES DOLLARS
TRANSACTION DATE: 12/03/2018
TRANSACTION AMOUNT: $8,856,317.28 MILLION TRANSACTION DESCRIPTION: CREDIT/INFLOW
FROM: B/O CBN SUNDRY USD SUB BULK ACCOUNT TRANSACTION REF: NIMASA CBN 21703 INLW/GT18/13676
The UK group said with reference to the allegations against Bashir Yusuf Jamoh, it is important that he be suspended from office immediately, and forensic audit carried out on the financial activities of NIMASA.
“We recommend that a panel be set up to look into the accounts of NIMASA CABOTAGE 2% SURCHAGE account Number 56595 with ACCESS bank. Also, to ascertain reasons why NIMASA is still using Commercial] Banks to receive funds instead of the TSA with Central Bank of Nigeria.
“The Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele should be invited by Security Agencies to give reasons why payment of such huge amount was paid into Bashir Yusuf Jamoh’s account.
“We also recommend that Bashir Yusuf be prosecuted for financial crimes and money laundering as established by our investigations.”

Pointblanknews.com investigation revealed that Jamoh is Buhari’s direct in-law. His wife, Hajiya Zulai, is the daughter of the President’s sister and it was while living at Buhari’s Kaduna home that Zulai and Jamoh met.

Jamoh who untill recently was the Executive Director, Administration and Finance in the agency took over office from Dakuku Peterside.

It is not known yet the purpose for the huge sum in a personal account and why the security agency is yet to investigate the fund, but information available to pointblanknews.com has it that the money was meant to be laundered.

Relatives to President Buhari has been in the spotlight over corruption in this present administration.

Recently, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) declared Gimba Yau Kumo, a former son-in-law of President Muhammadu Buhari, wanted over an alleged $65 million fraud.

Kumo, a former managing director of the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria, married Fatima, the president’s daughter, in 2016 at Daura Katsina.

Continue reading
Image

BREAKING NEWS: Okorocha Arrested By EFCC, Media Aide Claims He Was Invited |The Republican News

Senator Rochas Okorocha

Former Governor Of Imo, Senator Rochas Owelle Okorocha  Arrested By EFCC Over Money Laundering.

Okorocha was arrested On Tuesday April 13 2021 at his office Unity House located at Area 11 in the  Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja.

Former Governor of Imo State Rochas  Owelle Okorocha has been arrested by the  Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC)

A source speaking with The Republican News confirmed the arrest adding that it took about 5hrs before EFCC officials were able to effect the arrest.

Wilson Uwujaren, the EFCC Spokesperson also confirming the news said,

“ Former Governor Rochas Okorocha has been arrested by our men”

In a hurriedly release press statement, which seems to be a PR damage control stunt, his media aide, Sam Onwuemeodo claims that he was invited and he honoured the invitation.

The press release obtained by The Republican News reads as follows.

PRESS RELEASE

RE: SENATOR ROCHAS OKOROCHA AND HIS REPORTED INVITATION BY THE EFCC

We have been inundated with calls by Media Houses and Concerned Nigerians and beyond, trying to Confirm the reported invitation of Senator Rochas Okorocha by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC, later today, being April 13, 2021,

The truth is that, Okorocha left as the governor of Imo State on May 28, 2019. And shortly after his exit as governor, Imo State Government wrote Petitions upon Petitions against him.

The EFCC investigated the petitions and has been in various Courts of the land with Okorocha, to that effect.

And if the EFCC has decided to invite Okorocha for Clarifications on the matters already in Courts, especially with a new Chairman at the helm of affairs at the Commission, there is nothing wrong with that.

The matters between EFCC and Okorocha over his governorship in Imo, have been pendent in various Courts of the land.

At the end of the day, we would know whether the Commission will be withdrawing the Cases in Courts, or would Continue with the Cases already in Courts.

But to us, the Commission is doing its job and should be given the needed cooperation. And Okorocha being a law-abiding Citizen, would always cooperate with the Commission over the Matters in Courts. EFCC is not a slaughter House, but a very responsible institution and should be seen as such.

We have no reason to complain about the invitation of today, which Okorocha honoured as patriotic and responsible Nigerian.

Like we Stated earlier, the Commission didn’t invite Okorocha today, for the first time.

Sam Onwuemeodo
Special Adviser on Media to the former Governor, Senator Rochas Okorocha

Continue reading
Image

Ibori’s £4.2m Loot Should Be Returned To Delta State, Falana Counters Malami |The Republican News

Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana

by Ayodele Oluwafemi

Femi Falana, a senior advocate of Nigeria (SAN), says the loot recovered from James Ibori, former governor of Delta, should be returned to the source, which is the state.

Falana stated this when he featured on a Channels Television programme on Wednesday.

Commenting on the position of Abubakar Malami, attorney-general of the federation, who had said the recovered loot will be channelled into federal projects, Falana said the money should go to Delta, since it was meant for the development of the state.

On Tuesday, the United Kingdom made a commitment to return £4.2 million loot recovered from Ibori to the federal government.

Catriona Laing, British high commissioner to Nigeria, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to that effect with Malami.

But speaking on Wednesday, Falana argued that since the Ibori loot in question left the coffers of Delta state, the federal government has no locus standi to decide how the recovered money is spent.

“Having acknowledged the role of the federal government, the fund has to return to the source. Factually, between 1999 and 2003, the Delta state government like other state governments in Nigeria received its statutory allocation on a monthly basis and paid same into the account of the government. From that account, some amount was alleged to have been diverted and taken to the United Kingdom,” he said.


“As the honourable attorney-general had said, the money is over £100 million. What has been released now is the first tranche of £4.2 million. Since the money left the coffers of the Delta state government, it has to be returned once this fund is recovered.

“The federal government has no locus standi with respect to how the money is spent. That is left for the people of Delta state to monitor the government of that state to ensure that the fund is not relooted.

“In fact, the memorandum of understanding referred to by the attorney-general signed in London, smacks of colonialism. Britain cannot decide on how recovered loot should be spent.

“What I expect the attorney-general or the federal government — in the circumstance — is to collaborate with the Delta state government to ensure that the banks that housed the looted wealth of Delta state or the banks involved, are made to pay collosal damages and interests for denying the people of Delta state the opportunity to use the money for development.”

Continue reading
Image

EFCC Goes Deeper Into Tinubu’s Probe, Asks For Asset Declaration Form From CCB |The Republican News

Bola Ahmed Tinubu


By Eniola Akinkuotu, Abuja

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has deepened its probe into All Progressives Congress stalwart, Bola Tinubu, The PUNCH has learnt.

To this end, the EFCC has written a letter to the Code of Conduct Bureau, requesting copies of Tinubu’s asset declaration form.

A copy of the letter which was published by online news medium, The Peoples Gazette, revealed that the investigation into Tinubu began last year after the removal of erstwhile Chairman, Ibrahim Magu.

The letter marked CR/3000/EFCC/LS/Vol4/322, dated November 6, 2020 was signed by the then Lagos zonal head, Abdulrasheed Bawa, who is now the Chairman of the EFCC.

The letter read in part, “In view of the above, you are kindly requested to furnish the commission with the outstanding requested information of Bola Ahmed Adekunle Tinubu.

“This request is made pursuant to Section 38(1) and (2) of the EFCC Act 2004.”

Attempts to speak with the EFCC Spokesman, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, proved abortive as he did not respond to calls.

However, a senior EFCC official confirmed the authenticity of the letter, adding that it was part of a wider probe.

The official, who wished to remain anonymous, said the probe was sequel to some petitions written against Tinubu since 2018 which Magu had failed to act on.

The source said, “The letter is authentic. The EFCC is in receipt of several petitions against Tinubu, including one involving alleged fraud in Alpha Beta Consulting.”

A former Managing Director of Alpha Beta Consulting, Mr. Dapo Apara, had written petitions to the EFCC, accusing the firm of tax evasion and being run by Tinubu albeit by proxy.

Apara had also instituted a lawsuit against Tinubu.

In his statement of claim, he stated that Tinubu controlled the company which was receiving 10 per cent of the taxes collected on behalf of the state.

The former MD said as the head of the company, he began looking into its finances and he made many startling discoveries such as mysterious transfers of over N20bn to various companies.

He stated, “N550m payment to Ocean Trust Ltd vide payment instruction dated the 15/5/18, N850m payment to Ocean Trust Ltd vide payment instruction dated the 14/3/15.”

The claimant said N960m was spent on purchasing HITV’s 300,000,000 shares.

However, Alpha Beta Tax consultancy firm, Alpha Beta LLP, denied allegations levelled against it by Apara, adding that he had diverted about $5m during his time as managing director by inflating a contract which was worth about $300,000 and then diverted a separate N6bn to personal use. (Punch)

Continue reading
Image

Reactions Trail Judge’s Judgement Over Temporary Forfeiture Of Properties Illegally Acquired By Okorocha |RN

Reactions have continued to trail yesterday’s judgement in Imo that Okorocha forfeiture of properties acquired is wrong and that the government is wrong to have gone to seal properties without proper application and directions.

We have found out from the reactions of the court that it is true that the government in power is always in charge but also the same government should no that nobody is above the law and as such Imo government is expected to seek redress accordingly.

They did not place the facts before the Judge as the matter is before an appellate court and as such the judgement should be quashed.

An Owerri High Court presided over by Hon. Justice E.F Njemanze, today 24/2/2021 granted an Order of Interim forfeiture against all the property illegally acquired by former Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha.

Ruling on an ex-parte application for an order for interim forfeiture, filed by L.M Alozie (SAN) on behalf of the Imo State Government, Justice Njemanze granted the order as prayed.

Some of the properties included in the order are: Eastern Palm University, Ogboko, Royal Palm Luxury Hotel, Akachi Road, Old Magistrates Quarters, Orlu Road and many other properties listed and recommended by Justice Duruoha-Igwe panel on illegally acquired landed property.

The Judge Ordered the Applicant, to publish the list of properties in two national and local newspapers to enable anyone who wants to stop making the Order permanent, or who has any interest in any, to apply to the court, and show cause, why, the order will not be made permanent.

By this recent development, we have investigated the proceedings and have this hint that the properties forfeited will henceforth bear Imo state government property and not Okorochas’ pending the final decision by the court.

Meanwhile, Barrister Obinna Amagwula has a contrary view on a radio chat where he insisted that the matter should not be taking to any other court since there is a pending order at a high court in Abuja.

Senator Okorocha loses out as court grants interim forfeiture of properties illegally acquired in Imo
That the order of forfeiture is unnecessary, hence on the 13 days of September 2019 a federal high court judge released this same property to the owners. That the court may not be aware that the same matter is pending at an appellate court of competent jurisdiction.

He further stated that those areas of land in the contest was a verge belonging to the state government which was converted and developed by the then governor Okorocha to make Imo fine.

Besides, it is true that the government has the right to allocate land for possible development.

That the obvious is that the matter is already in court.That the affidavit was not inclusive in the order and there is no fact but that the court may have been deceived.

That the government should wait for the EFCC report than a pending suit to conflict with the judicial procedure. Any order gotten therein will be paused. We need to see the order and the affidavit hence there is a suborder. (9News Nigeria)

Continue reading
Image

BREAKING NEWS: Rochas Okorocha Arrested, Detained At State CID In Owerri For Vandalism [Video] |The Republican News

Senator Rochas in police Hilux truck before being taken to police station in Owerri

Sen. Rochas Okorocha has been arrested by Imo state government for personally leading the destruction and vandalism of security vehicles and breaking into the property of Imo State government.

The former Governor this afternoon led armed thugs to break into the property of the state government, destroying security vehicles and other state government properties.

Rochas Okorocha being arrested in Owerri

He is currently being held and detained at the state Cid.

Details later…

Continue reading