Diezani in fresh money laundering case

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Wednesday charged Diezani Allison-Madueke, former minister of petroleum resources, and three others with money laundering.

Others charged alongside Allison-Madueke, who was described in the charge as “still at large”, are: Christian Nwosu, Yisa Olarenwaju and Tijani Bashir.

The three men are officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The charges were read over to the three accused, who were present in court, and Nwosu, pleaded guilty to the charges, while Adedoyin and Bashir pleaded not guilty.

Rotimi Oyedepo, the prosecutor, then informed Mohammed Idris, the trial judge, that Nwosu had elected to enter into plea bargain with the EFCC.

Oyedepo added that already Nwosu had made a refund of N5 million and surrendered the title document of a landed property he purchased for N25 million in Delta state.

Reacting, Nwosu’s lawyer, Adeku Nbangba, confirmed the position and pleaded with Idris to temper justice with mercy in deciding the fate of the accused.

The judge adjourned till April 7, for sentencing and ordered that Nwosu be remanded at the EFCC custody.

Meanwhile, the judge granted bail in the sum of N50 million each to Adedoyin and Bashir, adding that they should deposit their international passport with the court’s registrar.

The prosecution had alleged that the accused committed the offence on March 27, 2015 by accepting bribe from the ex-petroleum minister.

They were also alleged to have conspired to take possession of the sum of about N264 million which sum they reasonably ought to have known formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful act of gratification.

The accused were also said to have made cash payments of the sum of about N235 million, which sum exceeded the amount authorised by law, without going through a financial Institution.

EFCC further alleged that Bashir (fourth accused) also made cash payment of about N70.1 million to Adedoyin (third accused) without going through a financial institution and which sum exceeded the amount authorised by law.

The prosecution also alleged that Bashir also directly took possession of the sum of about N165 million which sum he ought reasonably to have known formed part of an unlawful act of gratification.

In count seven, Nwosu (second accused) was alleged to have directly used the sum of N30 million which he ought to have known formed part of an unlawful act of gratification.

The offences are said to have contravened the provisions of sections 15 (3), 16 (2) and 18 (a) of the money laundering prohibition amendment Act, 2012.


Source: The Cable

EFCC Arraigns Sa’ad Ahmed Madaki For N200m Fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) today, April 4, 2017, arraigned one Sa’ad Ahmed Madaki before Justice Jude Daggard of the Federal High Court, Kano on one count charge of obtaining money by false pretense.

The charge reads, “That you, Sa’ad Ahmed Madaki, sometime in 2011 at Kano within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court with intent to defraud, did obtain the sum of N200,000,000 (Two Hundred Million Naira Only) from one Auwal Abdulkadir on the pretext that you would produce industrial plastic and sack packaging machinery and equipment for the said Auwal Abdulkadir, which pretense you knew to be false and you thereby committed an offense contrary to section 1(1)(a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under section 1(3) of the same Act”.

After listening to the charge, the defendant pleaded not guilty and the case proceeded to trial with the prosecution calling the nominal complainant as a witness.

According to the complainant who was led into evidence by the prosecution counsel, N.K Ukoha, the defendant induced him to part with the sum of N200,000,000 (Two Hundred Million Naira Only)  under the pretext that the money was for the establishment of Polythene Bag Making Company. He disclosed to the court that the defendant collected the money from him in tranches between 2000 and 2011.

The second prosecuting witness, an operative of the Commission who is the investigation officer of the case, told the court that the defendant was transferred to the Commission by the Department of State Services who arrested for alleged terrorist activities.  The DSS released the defendant to the Commission upon realizing that his activities verged on financial crimes.

PW2 further informed the court that upon receipt of the case, the case was assigned to his team and the team immediately swung into action by inviting the complainant, Auwalu Abdulkadir, who reported and gave a statement. The defendant also volunteered a statement and reduced same into writing. The witness revealed that on conclusion of their investigation, it was discovered that the defendant fraudulently obtained the sum of N200,000,000 from the complainant under the pretext that the money was for the establishment of Polythene Bag Making Company.

Prosecution counsel N.K. Ukoha showed the witness the DSS referral letter and the statements made by both complainant and the defendant at the EFCC and DSS respectively for identification. The witness identified same and Ukoha applied to tender same in evidence.

The defense counsel objected to the admissibility of the statement. He argued that they were not made voluntarily but under duress.

Ukoha, in his response, said the statement were not even confessional, that it is only when statements are confessional that the admissibility issue could be raised.

The court ruled that the referral letter from DSS was not objected to and since it was attached with the statement of the defendant as well as the nominal complainant’s, both documents were admitted into evidence and marked exhibit P1.

In respect of the statement made to the EFCC,  Justice Daggard ordered for a conduct of trial within trial and adjourned the matter to May 15th 2017 for continuation of trial.


Source: Sahara Reporters

Former EFCC boss Ribadu to speak on Panama Papers

A former chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Nuhu Ribadu, will on Thursday be part of a panel to discuss the Panama Papers leak as they affect Africa.

The forum is organised by the European Parliament Inquiry Committee, PANA, following revelations published by a consortium of international media, including PREMIUM TIMES, showing secretive offshore companies used by powerful individuals and criminals to hide wealth, evade taxes and commit fraud.

The event will hold in Strasbourg France on Thursday, April 6.

The committee, which had been working since July last year had held a series of public hearings with the journalists who revealed the Panama Papers, representatives of international organisations, academics, the business society.

The Members of the Committee have now decided to hold a hearing on “The impact of the schemes revealed in the Panama Papers on developing countries”.

Information from the European Parliament in Brussels, Belgium, reveals that members of the PANA Committee will use the meeting to get a better understanding of the impact of money-laundering and tax evasion on developing countries.

“The Members of the Committee will hear about the experience and findings of relevant stakeholders (journalist and experts in taxation and money-laundering) in this area, with a focus on the level of cooperation between EU and African authorities, the difficulties faced by them and the deficiencies observed in the existing legal framework in this field (including, if appropriate evidence of no respect of EU law),” one of the released information said.

Mr. Ribadu will be part of a panel that will discuss Panama Papers and Africa alongside Carlos Lopez, a former UN representative, as well as Alvin Mosloma, the founding executive director of Tax Justice Network Africa.

Others are Jean Ziegler, an author from Switzerland, Will Fitzgibbon, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, ICIJ, reporter focusing on the Panama Papers impact in Africa and De Pasquale, an Italian prosecutor.


Source: Premium Times

FG Seeks Arrest Warrant On Former AGF, Mohammed Adoke.

The Federal Government is seeking an arrest warrant on a former Attorney
General of the Federation, Mohammed Adoke.

This request was presented by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) which today charged the former Attorney General, with illegal transfer of more than 800 million Dollars for the purchase of Oil Prospecting License, OPL, 245 to a former Minister of Petroleum, Don Etete and Malabu Oil.

At the commencement of trial at the Federal High Court in Abuja, the EFCC informed Justice John Tsoho of an application for a warrant of arrest of the former AGF, seeking an advice on whether the application could be made orally or by way of a motion.

Justice Tsoho however refused to grant the arrest warrant, saying it would not be proper to do as the defendant was not before the court.

The counsel to the EFCC, Johnson Ojogbane said he asked for a long judgment to enable him bring the defendants before the court, adding that he intends to also amend the charges.

The Federal Government is embroiled in a legal tussle over the ownership of OPL 245, which claims was transferred to international oil giants, Shell and ENI in questionable circumstance.


Source: Channels TV

EFCC Boss Magu sues Sun Newspaper of libel, seeks N5 billion.

The acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, has accused the Sun Newspaper of libel, and is demanding a N5 billion naira compensation.

Wilson Uwujaren, Head Media and Publicity, EFCC, said this on Thursday in a statement in Abuja.

He said Mr. Magu was seeking the compensation for “libellous imputations and statements” made against him in a story published in the March 25, 2017 edition of the Saturday Sun.

“The publication was captioned “Magu Under Fresh Probe over 2 Abuja Mansions”.

The spokesman said that Mr. Magu’s solicitor, Wahab Shittu, noted in a letter that the authors of the story “willfully and maliciously made false, destructive, and defamatory statements” against him.

He said that the paper quoted unidentified sources.

Mr. Uwujaren said the writers of the “offensive” report, had maliciously alleged that Mr. Magu owned “two mansions on different streets in highbrow Maitama area of Abuja”.

“This is a case which they could not substantiate, and which in fact was false, and nothing but the figments of their imaginations.

Mr. Magu denied owning a property in Maitama.

The Sun said it would inform its lawyers to examine the veracity of Mr. Magu’s case.

“There’s nothing I want to say about that other than that if there’s any letter from Mr. Magu the company will invite its lawyers who will look at the issue,” Femi Babafemi, editor of Saturday Sun whose title was responsible for the story, told PREMIUM TIMES by telephone Friday afternoon.

When asked, specifically, if the newspaper stood by its report, Mr. Babafemi said, “I’ve just told you what I need to tell you.”

EFCC drags PDP lawmaker Nse Bassey Ekpenyong to court over certificate forgery

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday arraigned a member of the House of Representatives, Nse Bassey Ekpenyong for alleged certificate forgery and alteration of his West African School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) result.

His arraignment came a few days after the authorities of the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria cleared Senator Dino Melaye of a similar allegation.The EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren said in a statement yesterday that Ekpenyong was arraigned before Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court sitting in Uyo, Akwa-Ibom State on a nine-count charge of forgery and altering of certificate.

Ekpenyong, who represents Oron Federal Constituency of Akwa-Ibom State was alleged to have forged an Abia State Polytechnic Ordinary National Diploma (OND) certificate and uttered a December 1999 WASSCE certificate and thereby committed perjury before an electoral tribunal where he claimed that the certificates were genuine,” the statement said.

The defendant pleaded not guilty to the charges when they were read to him.He was then granted bail in the sum of N10 million with one surety in like sum. The surety must depose to an affidavit of means, provide two recent passport photographs and three years tax clearance certificate.

The surety is expected to write an undertaking to produce the defendant throughout the trial and all the documents of the surety must be verified by the Registrar.Meanwhile, Ekpeyong would be remanded in prison custody pending the perfection of his bail. The case was adjourned till April 12 and 26 and May 3 and 4, 2017 for trial.

5 ‘Yahoo’ LAUTECH students handed over to EFCC in Ibadan

The Ibadan Zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Monday, 20th March, 2017 took over five suspected internet fraudsters arrested by men of the Oyo State Joint Security Task Force, ‘Operation Burst’ for further investigation.

The suspects, which includes Oyewole Oyeleye Olatunji (28), Adeniran Adeyinka Yusuf (29), Samuel Olumide Adeola (29), Israel Adeola (24) and Olorunyemi Savior Imonah (24) were arrested March 13, 2017 during a routine surveillance at Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) Ogbomosho.

They were thereafter interrogated at the Operation Burst headquarters, Agodi where they confessed to have defrauded some American women through various romance scam using different dating sites. They also confessed to have obtained different sums from their victims.

At the point of arrest, four HP Laptops, three Nokia phones, four I phones, one Infinix Hot Note Phone, a Flash Drive and four Military camouflage T-shirts were recovered from them.

Investigations have also revealed that the suspects have various incriminating documents in their Laptops and Phones. They were posing on the dating sites as American Soldiers and using different identities to defraud unsuspecting American Ladies.

Oyewole confessed to have been posing as Billy Philip, Johnson Moron and Montegro respectively.
According to him, he collected itune cards from one Stephanie and has been using the card to chat with Holly Donis, Dona Rissmiller and Mona Venziano among others who were also Americans.

Adeniran also posed as Cheryl Ann and Cindy Grant on Facebook and engaged unsuspecting ladies in dating. He had also used the medium to defraud and obtain Dollars from one Cherly Chambers.

Samuel has been posing as Gome, Rundell, and Klaus. He confessed to have collected itune card and different sums of dollars from Linda and Patricia on a dating site.

Israel had online affairs with Jeannie Mae Sherman and obtained different sums running into several thousands of dollars and itune cards from her and another One Thousand, Two Hundred and Fifty One Dollars itune cards from Lritz Ortiz. While Olorunyemi using the names Terry Elizabeth and Bunt Janice Muriel had also swindled unsuspecting victims to the tune of Two Hundred Dollars and Three Hundred Dollars itune cards.

The suspects will be charged to court as soon as investigation is completed.

EFCC arrests internet fraudster for defrauding American national

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on March 27, 2017, arraigned one Gbenga Yusuf John, a suspected Internet fraudsters, before Justice A. M. Nicol-Clay of the State High Court sitting in Igbosere, Lagos on a three-count charge bordering on conspiracy and forgery.

The accused person, while posing as an American working in Nigeria, conned a U.S lady whom he met on a dating site by claiming that he owns a number of rental properties in Southwest Florida, USA.

Upon their meeting, the accused person allegedly told the victim that he was currently in Africa to give aid to victims of Ebola disease and sought her assistance in managing his rental deposit while he was away.

Consequently, the victim allegedly processed the rental deposits and received thousands of dollars in postal money order mailed directly to her by the accused person.

The unsuspecting victim allegedly deposited all the cheques, acquired cash and then transferred the funds through Western Union to Yusuf.

One of the counts reads: “Gbenga Yusuf John on or about the 26th day of February, 2006 in Lagos within the Lagos Judicial Division, had in your possession a document dated Tuesday, February 3, 2015 in which you represented yourself as James Carter, born and raised in the United State of America but presently reside in Nigeria where you are doing electronic business which representation you knew or ought to have known to be false having regard to the circumstances of this case.”

The accused pleaded not guilty to the charges.

In view of his plea, the prosecution counsel, M.Aliyu, asked the court for a trial date and prayed that the accused person be remanded in prison custody

However, counsel to the accused, S.O. Obaje, who did object to the submissions of the prosecution, pleaded with the court for a short date to file his application for bail.

After listening to both parties, Justice Nicol-Clay remanded the accused person in prison custody and adjourned the matter to June 20, 2017 for hearing of the bail application and the continuation of trial.

Magu is terrorising us because we rejected him – Senator Francis Alimikhena

Francis Alimikhena, senator representing Edo north, has accused Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) of “terrorising” senators because they rejected his nomination.

Alimikhena said this on the floor of the senate on Tuesday while contributing to a debate where the senate agreed to suspend the confirmation of resident electoral commissioners (RECs) of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

He expressed supported for the idea of not screening the REC nominees sent by President Muhammadu Buhari until the executive explained its reason for retaining Magu.

“When doing something, do it well. What if we refuse one the nominees? That is the question the distinguished senators are asking the executive,” he said.

“There is no need for us not to confirm one, and when he goes back, they say, ‘you can continue to act’. So, if we disqualify a candidate and the person continues to act, why did they send the names here in the first place? Let’s not act on these names until the explains what happened to Magu.

“We disqualified Magu and he is still acting, and they are bringing nominees to confirm… The EFCC chairman that we disqualified in this chamber is behind all the problems in the paper today. He is behind all manner of allegations against us in the media. Magu is terrorising us because we disqualified him.”

When told to react to the allegation of the senator, Wilson Uwujaren, spokesman of the EFCC, said he had nothing to say.

“Report what you heard in the senate,” he told TheCable on telephone before ending the conversation abruptly.

On March 15, the senate rejected the nomination of Magu for the second time in three months.

The upper legislative chamber had cited an indictment on the anti-graft czar by the Department of State Services (DSS).

The DSS had accused Magu of being unfit to head the commission.

“Magu has failed integrity test and will constitute a liability to the anti-corruption drive of the current administration,” the agency had said in a report submitted to the senate.

The presidency is yet to react publicly to the issue of Magu’s rejection by the senate.

The lawmakers shifted the confirmation of 27 RECs by two weeks based on the disagreement with the presidency.


Source: The Cable

Magu drags The Sun Newspaper to court, denies owning house in Maitama.

The acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, has denied owning any house or houses in the Maitama area of Abuja.

Reacting to a report captioned, Magu Under Fresh Probe over 2 Abuja Mansions, which appeared in The Sun Newspaper of March 25, the EFCC boss dismissed the story as a work of fiction that threatens legal action against the newspaper and the authors of the story.
The report which appeared on page 9 of the newspaper, among others, claimed that Mr. Magu is being probed regarding the ownership of two mansions in the Maitama area of Abuja allegedly linked to his wife.

Relying on ghost sources, the newspaper claimed that “the houses being investigated are located in Danube Street, Maitama and Missouri Street, off Colorado Close, Ministers Hill.” It added that “the two houses were said to have been bought last year.”

Mr. Magu stated that neither himself nor his wife own any property in Maitama. He urged Nigerians to disregard the report as false and designed by the authors to achieve motives that are obvious.

“I don’t have any mansion anywhere in Maitama. Would I have two mansions in Abuja yet choose to live in a rented apartment in the same community? The Sun can take over the properties if they have evidence that they belong to me or my wife”, Mr. Magu said.

The acting chairman disclosed that he is taking legal action against the newspaper.

“This is another calculated attempt to smear my reputation. They may have gotten away with such false reports in the past but I will not let this go unchallenged. I have already briefed my lawyers to institute legal action against The Sun Newspaper,” Mr. Magu declared.


Source: Premium Times

Ex-Governor Nyako diverted N1.2 Billion to private companies -Witness

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Friday, through its seventh witness, presented documents in court to show the transfer of about N1,384,525,000 allegedly diverted from the Adamawa State government, during the tenure of Murtala Nyako, to the account of Crust Energy Limited.

Mr. Nyako, a former governor of the state, is facing a 37-count charge along with his son and serving senator, Abdulaziz, Abubakar Aliyu and Zulkifikk Abba, before Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Abuja.

They are alleged to have committed the fraud using Blue Opal Limited, Sebore Farms & Extension Limited, Pagoda Fortunes Limited, Tower Assets Management Limited and Crust Energy Limited, as conduit pipes.

The witness, Chinedu Ayogu, a compliance officer with Diamond Bank, while being led in evidence by O.A. Atolagbe, told the court that the bank received request with respect to some companies linked to the defendants.

“We received a request from the EFCC to provide the account opening packages of Sentinel Production and Exploration Limited and the statements of account which consisted of the Naira and Dollar accounts, and we complied,” Mr. Ayogu said.

Mr. Ayogu identified the various documents sent to the EFCC in response to the anti-graft agency’s request, which were subsequently tendered as exhibit against them.

There was no objection from counsels to the defendants, as to their admissibility, and they were accepted and marked as exhibit AD.

Under cross-examination, Mr. Ayogu said at various times, several amounts of money were credited into the account of Crust Energy Limited.

Mr. Ayogu said: “On May 2, 2013, Crust Energy Limited was credited with N160 million, N79 million on May 13, 2013, and another N79 million on May 14, 2013, N150 million on May 23, 2013, and another N150 million on June 7, 2013, N120 million and N100 million on July 16, 2013, N508,500,000 on November 19, 2013, and N38,025,000 on December 10, 2013.”

According to Ayogu, the documents also indicated that “on August 13, 2013, Belmark Ent. IFO Sentinel Exploration was credited with $4,500,000. On November 19, 2013, Belmark Ent. IFO Sentinel Expl was credited with $3,000,000. On December 12, 2013, Sentinel Exploration E/O Belmark Ent. Was credited with $220,000”.

While adjourning to May 2 for continuation of trial, Justice Abang fixed March 28 to hear an application brought by Mr. Abba seeking release of his international passport.


SOURCE: News statement by Wilson Uwujaren, Head Media & Publicity, EFCC.

BVN fraudsters sent to 6 months in prison

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC today secured the conviction of Innocent Clinton and Emmanuel Okanni before Justice Sa’ad Muhammad of the Gombe State High Court on a two-count charge bordering on conspiracy and theft.

The convicts, who hail from Orlu Local Government Area of Imo State, specialised in duping innocent people by obtaining their bank verification numbers using the trick that their accounts had been closed due to BVN issues.

Messrs. Clinton and Okanni were arrested by operatives of the Gombe Zonal office of the EFCC in Imo State following a petition by Ibrahim Gwamna, alleging that on December 7, 2016, he received a call from one Kingsley who presented himself as a staff of Diamond Bank and asked him whether his mobile banking was working to which he answered in in the negative.

Later, he received a text message purportedly from Diamond Bank instructing him to call a particular phone number as customer care in order to lodge his complaint.

Few minutes after complying, he received an alert that the sum of N864, 000.00 was transferred from his account into the convicts’ accounts.

Upon arraignment today, the two men pleaded guilty to the charge and were accordingly convicted and sentenced to six months imprisonment each.

They however received the option of N30, 000 fine.


Source: Premium Times

President Buhari cannot re-nominate Magu – VP, Nigeria Bar Association

The debate on the second rejection and re-nomination of the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu for confirmation by the National Assembly is not over yet.

Vice President of the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Monday Ubani yesterday said President Muhammadu Buhari cannot re-nominate Magu to the Senate based on the internal rules of the National Assembly regarding such issues.

He said if that was the case, then there could be a problem, adding that he may not know what is on President Buhari’s mind as Magu had been rejected for the second time by the Senate.

“Under the law, the president can re-nominate Magu, but going by what Senator Dino Melaye said, there are internal rules in the Senate that specify how many times a candidate can be re-nominated for confirmation,” he said.

He added that there are two options for the president. Either he exploits the lacuna in law that provides for perpetually retaining the EFCC boss in acting capacity or he nominates another person for the job.

Another lawyer, Charles Lambo pointed out that the presidency’s insistence on Magu was an illegality and a breach of trust between the executive and the legislature.

“This is because section 171 of the constitution gives the president powers to appoint certain officers, which are subject to confirmation of the Senate without which they act in nullity and the EFCC Act also confirmed that the position of Chairman must be confirmed by the Senate,” he added.

He further explained that for Magu to remain in acting capacity after the Senate has rejected him twice was an illegality and advised the presidency to obey the Senate resolution on the matter.

Unlike Ubani who argued that the presidency can exploit the lacuna in the law, Lambo believes it cannot be possible, even as he made referred to Professor Itse Sagay statement that Magu can continue in Acting capacity indefinitely.

“But this is democracy and cannot be possible under the constitution,” he stressed.


Source: The Guardian

BREAKING: Court grants ex-NNPC chief Andrew Yakubu bail

A Federal High Court in Abuja on Tuesday granted bail to Andrew Yakubu, a former head of Nigeria’s state oil firm, NNPC.

Mr. Yakubu was arrested by the anti-graft EFCC after about $9.8 million cash was found in his house in Kaduna.

The court granted Mr. Yakubu a N300 million bail while he was also asked to produce two suretees.

Details later…

President Buhari can re-nominate Magu for confirmation as EFCC boss – Ndume

The Chairman Senate Committee on Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Senator Mohammed Ali Ndume, says President Muhammadu Buhari can re-present Ibrahim Magu for confirmation as the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to the Senate.

He said the president, having earlier cleared Magu based on a report by the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami should go ahead to stand by his conviction that the Acting Chairman of EFCC committed no infraction contrary to the allegations leveled against him by the DSS.

Ndume stated this in an interview on a television station yesterday. He said his support for Magu to continue to head the EFCC was not because he had any personal interest in him, but because of the need to sustain the momentum on the anti-corruption battle he has been fighting.

He also faulted the voice vote employed by the Senate President, Bukola Saraki which led to Magu’s rejection, contending that the Senate president in line with tradition should have differed voting on Magu to another legislative day after he had been screened.

Ndume lamented that the rejection of Magu by the Senate was premeditated, wondering why it had to write to the DSS to demand for an advisory on Magu just a day to his scheduled screening.

“As a Senate, our job is limited only to confirmation of nominees. We are not supposed to investigate anybody. We are not supposed to be a court. The tradition is that if there is a nominee before us, Senators from that state will take a position and that is the first hurdle.

Ndume lamented that the All Progressives Congress (APC) failed to intervene on the issue of Magu by calling for a meeting of the party’s Senate caucus, a reason he said there was a disconnect among its members in the Senate on the issues at stake.


Source: The Guardian

“Magu can serve in acting capacity indefinitely”, Presidential committee tells Buhari.

The Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption has advised President Muhammadu Buhari not to remove the acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, whose confirmation was rejected by the Senate on Wednesday.

The committee further stated that Magu could continue in acting capacity indefinitely.

It was learnt that the committee had resolved to communicate its resolution to the President in writing.

The Chairman of the PACAC, Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN), told The PUNCH that the resolution was unanimous and that members were of the view that removing Magu would negatively affect the war against corruption.

He said, “I had a telephone conference with all members of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption and we unanimously agreed that Magu is the best candidate in this country for that position and that he should continue acting indefinitely until he is confirmed and there should be no change whatsoever; otherwise, there will be a major setback in the fight against corruption.

“We observed that those who do not want him are those who are opposed to the fight against corruption. So, we are 100 per cent behind him.”

Meanwhile, the Presidency, on Thursday, said it would not respond to the rejection of the nomination of Magu until it received a formal communication from the Senate on the development.

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, stated this on his Twitter handle.

“The Presidency will respond to the non-clearance of Magu as EFCC boss after it receives official communication in writing from the Senate,” Adesina wrote.

The Senate had, on Wednesday, rejected Magu’s nomination for the second time.

Also, a rights advocacy group, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, described as illogical, the manner in which the Senate rejected Magu as the substantive EFCC chairman.

In a statement on Thursday by its Executive Director, Adetokunbo Mumuni, the organisation described as a slap on Nigerians the rejection of Magu by the Senate “on the pretext of conflicting and inconsistent reports on him (Magu) by the government of President Muhammadu Buhari.”

SERAP posited that the Senate and the President had failed their legitimate governmental purpose of working together to promote and enhance the independence, integrity and effectiveness of the country’s main anti-corruption agency, the EFCC.

It argued that what the Senate should have done was to have “critically engaged with the two reports by the Department of State Services and provided Magu with meaningful opportunity to be heard,” before rejecting him.

“The entire process for the submission of Magu’s name for confirmation by the Senate, and the purported confirmation hearing by the Senate is utterly unsatisfactory,” SERAP declared.

The organisation argued that while it conceded that it was within the right of the Senate to accept or reject the nomination of anyone, such a right must be exercised “constitutionally, reasonably, logically and rationally.”

“He (President) should then take rational and reasonable measures to re-nominate him for confirmation.

“We also urge the Senate to carry out its duty to confirm Magu in line with constitutional and international requirements and without any political or ulterior considerations whatsoever,” SERAP demanded.

The statement read in part, “But by providing conflicting and inconsistent reports to the Senate on Magu’s confirmation, the government of President Buhari has not taken a logical, fair, and reasonable constitutional and international measure to promote, advance, establish and maintain an independent and effective EFCC.

“And the Senate, on its own part, would seem to have acted mala fide by picking and choosing the least favourable DSS report to reject Magu’s nomination.

“The proper and reasonable action the Senate should have taken in the circumstances of this case would have been to invite the leadership of the DSS to appear before it to explain the manifest contradictions and inconsistencies in its reports.”


Source: PUNCH

Senate awaits new nominee after rejecting Magu again

After about two hours of intense questioning, the Senate yesterday rejected the second nomination of Ibrahim Magu as the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

His first nomination for confirmation was rejected in December 15, 2016 over a damning status report sent to the Senate by the Department of State Services (DSS).

This second rejection may slow down the anti-corruption crusade of President Muhammadu Buhari while he is searching for a replacement for Magu. Besides, it may lead to a frosty relationship between the executive and legislative arms of government that could hinder good governance.

An attempt by former Senate Leader, Ali Ndume, to oppose the procedures adopted to screen and disqualify Magu was swiftly overruled by Senate President Bukola Saraki.

Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu, who threw the first question was very categorical about the need for the acting EFCC boss to provide detailed explanations on the DSS report which had noted his alleged corrupt practices, including paying a rent of N20 million per annum

But Magu tried to evade answering the question as he told the lawmakers that he would not want to rubbish a sister security agency. Not even the insistence of Saraki that Magu should answer the question swayed the EFCC boss. Unknown to Magu, the question on the DSS report was coming back in a more damning form.

But before the matter was re-introduced, Shehu Sani (APC, Kaduna central) had reminded the nominee that it was the ‘Ides of March” and even prayed for him.

Sani said: “Today is the Ides of March, a very memorable day in the history of Roman Empire when Julius Caesar was executed when he came to the Senate. So, may the Lord be with you.”

Re-introducing the DSS report, Dino Melaye (APC, Kogi West) suddenly rose and drew the attention of Magu to a second report which he said was received by the Senate on Tuesday evening.

Melaye said: “I have before me two reports from the DSS, one addressed to the Senate in October and the second one written to this chamber and was received by the office of the Clerk of the Senate at 5:02p.m. just yesterday.

“Magu, nominee for the position of the chairmanship of the EFCC, having gone through these reports, the first report indicted you but because of the letter from Mr. President you are here again.

“Just yesterday this report was received from the DSS, paragraph 14 of the report reads thus: ‘In the light of the foregoing, Magu has failed the integrity test and will eventually constitute a liability to the anti-corruption drive of the present administration.’ “

Melaye continued: “The DSS is to us what the FBI and CIA are to the U.S. and we cannot ridicule, we cannot undermine and we cannot put in abeyance the report of the DSS. Anyone who wants to be chairman of EFCC must have the character and characteristics of the wife of Caeser, you must be unblemished, you must be pure, you must be stainless.”

Melaye disclosed that there was a case where EFCC operatives raided a particular house and some Certificates of Occupancy (Cs of Os) taken and those Cs of O were later found in the market. He said the police had investigated and two of the documents had been returned to the owner.

“Do you still think, after this report and as a result of what has happened to the Cs of O of an innocent Nigerian, you are still qualified to be the chairman of EFCC or we take you to Golgotha?”

Magu replied that he was hearing the allegation for the first time. “It is not everything that is done in the EFCC I have knowledge of, the EFCC is too big. If not now, I didn’t know there was a case pending against EFCC staff in a police station. I will now go back and investigate it and give you a feedback.”

In a remark after the screening, Saraki said: “Let me first of all thank all of you on your contributions to this matter and the way the matter was carried in an open and transparent manner. What we are seeing here is democracy at work. I believe that what we have done on our own part, was to follow the constitution and due process. And we hope that the Executive will quickly act and bring in a new name as soon as possible so that the activities of the agency are not deterred.”

Meanwhile, if an amendment of the Act that established the EFCC eventually sails through at the National Assembly, the influence of President Buhari on the affairs of the anti-graft agency will be whittled drastically.

Yesterday, the House of Representatives took a significant step towards achieving this goal as four consolidated bills proposing a series of amendments to the EFCC Act passed the second reading at the plenary presided over by the Speaker, Yakubu Dogara.

The amendment which is also to make the commission more independent and effective is being jointly sponsored by Bede Uchenna Eke, Bassey Ewa, Oladipupo Adebutu and Kolade Oladele.

The new law will prescribe a stiffer penalty of 20 years for any person who commits financial or economic crime, create more stringent ways of removing members and chairman of the EFCC board and establish an asset confiscation and recovery unit as well as a financial investigation and intelligence unit.


Source: The Guardian

Fayose paid N75m into Ozekhome’s account from N1.2bn Dasuki’s funds – EFCC

The EFCC on Wednesday told a Federal High Court in Lagos that Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, made a payment of N75 million to a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Chief Mike Ozekhome, from the N1.2 billion the governor received from a former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission said it froze Ozekhome’s account because the money was suspected to be proceeds of crime. Ozekhome had urged Justice Abdullazeez Anka to unfreeze his firm’s account which the court ordered at EFCC’s instance on Feb. 7.

Opposing the application, EFCC’s lawyer, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo, argued that Ozekhome ought to have reasonably known that the money he received as part payment for legal fees was proceeds of “fraudulent activities”.

He said: “EFCC received an intelligence showing that one Mr Ayodele Fayose received N1.2 billion from the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) through the then Minister of State for Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro.”

He said Obanikoro conveyed the money in an aircraft to Akure airport for delivery to Fayose in neighbouring Ekiti. Oyedepo said it was investigated and it was discovered that the sum of N137 million was paid into an account no. 1003126654 operated by Fayose on June 26, 2014.

“On August 22 and 27, 2014, the sum of N50 million and N118 million was also credited to the account.” Oyedepo said having discovered that the funds were proceeds of crime, EFCC approached Justice Mohammed Idris of Lagos division for an order to freeze the account pending conclusion of investigations.

The lawyer said that the order by Justice Idris was not appealed by either Fayose or the bank where the money was lodged. “The N75 million is from the proceeds of the alleged crime fraudulently taken from the ONSA and kept in Fayose’s account from where it was transferred to Ozekhome. “ EFCC is empowered to freeze any money suspected to be proceeds of crime even if it is not in possession of the person committing the unlawful act.”

He argued that nothing had been showed to contradict the fact that the money came from ONSA, adding that Ozekhome could not also claim not to know the source of the money. Arguing his application to unfreeze the account, Ozekhome said it was not a lawyer’s duty to investigate the source of his legal fees. Besides, he said as at the time Fayose paid him the money, the governor’s account had been unfrozen by an order made by Justice Taiwo Taiwo of the Ekiti Division of the court on Dec. 13. 2016.

He said that the judge on Jan. 31 also refused EFCC’s application to stay execution of the judgment of Dec. 13, 2016. Ozekhome said EFCC obtained the order freezing his account 47 days after Fayose transferred the N75 million. “The account frozen by Justice Idris had been unfrozen by Justice Taiwo and made operational after it was found that material facts were suppressed,” he said.

The Senior Advocate said that the N75 million was part payment for the professional fees having handled eight cases for Fayose and his aides.

He said that the total sum owed his chambers by Fayose was N250 million and that he wrote Fayose demanding payment of the fees, and that the governor sought for his understanding because his account was frozen.

He also said when Justice Taiwo unfroze Fayose’s account, he (Ozekhome) sent the governor a reminder to pay the money after which he made the N75 million.

“There was no encumbrance on the account from which the money was transferred,” Ozekhome said, recalling that the bank in Ekiti also allowed Fayose to withdraw N5 million in cash from the account.

He said it was wrong for the EFCC to conclude that the money was a proceed of crime when Fayose, who enjoys immunity as a sitting governor had not been tried or convicted. Justice Anka fixed April 3 for ruling.

BREAKING: EFCC Intercepts N49 Million Cash At Kaduna Airport [Photos]

In what can be described as another huge success for the agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has intercepted five sacks containing N49m at the Kaduna International Airport following a tip off.

Disclosing this to newsmen on Tuesday at the agency’s Kaduna Zonal office, Ibrahim Bappa said that the notes recovered were wrapped in Nigerian Security and Minting  Plc (NSPM) labels.

“The report which was made at about 8pm stated that during the routine baggage screening of supposed check in baggage, five sacks were sighted unattended to and without tags containing fresh bulk items suspected to be money from the aroma perceived from the sacks. The owner of the money later showed up but couldn’t  state the exact money in the sacks or present document authenticating the genesis of the monies,” he said.

Speaking further, he said that  the individual who failed to give concrete explanation, disappeared before the arrival of EFCC operatives.
Bappa said that the sacks were found to contain 200 bundles of N200 notes totaling N40m and 180 bundles of N50 notes totaling N9m.

The recovered money was handed over to  officials of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for custody in EFCC’s recovery account.

‘I will prove my innocence’ – Former NNPC GMD, Andrew Yakubu

Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) ex-Group Managing Director Andrew Yakubu has said he will prove his innocence over allegation of false declaration of assets, even though the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has not charged him with any offence.

Yakubu accused the EFCC of denying him access to medical attention, which he said he desperately needed.

The former NNPC boss is being detained by the EFCC, following an alleged recovery of $9,772,800 and £74,000 cash from him, which he claimed was a gift.

A Federal High Court has directed that Yakubu, who has been transferred from EFCC’s facility in Kano to Abuja, forfeit the money to the government.
In a statement issued in Abuja, counsel to Yakubu, Ahmed Raji (SAN), said “within this time also, our client has been denied access to adequate medical attention which he desperately needs”.

Raji said even though his client voluntarily presented himself to the anti-graft agency, he has not been charged with any crime either by the EFCC or any agency of government.

The lawyer said the statement became necessary in view of media report alleging that his client is facing charges for under-declaration of assets and illegal transactions.

He said: “Within this time, no formal charges has been brought against our client by the EFCC or any other government establishment for any offence whatsoever as widely spread in media reports.

“Our client has been detained by the EFCC for more than a month since he voluntarily presented himself to them at their invitation and has fully cooperated with investigations.”

He stressed that his client was determined to prove his innocence and willingness to clear his name in due course.

Diezani Indicted In Fresh 450million Naira Fraud.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has named former Minister of Petroleum, Mrs. Diezani Allison-Madueke, in the five count amended charge made against a former governorship candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Mr. Mohammed Dele Belgore (SAN), and a former Minister of Planning, Professor Abubakar Sulaiman.

At the resumed trial of the two defendants before a Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday, the EFCC prosecutor, Mr. Rotimi Oyedepo urged the court to allow the amended charge be read for a fresh plea to be taken.

In the five count charges, Mrs Allison-Madueke was alleged to have conspired with Belgore and Sulaiman on or about March 27, 2015, to directly take possession of 450 million Naira, which they reasonably ought to have known, forms part of the proceeds of unlawful act.

The trio were also alleged to have taken the said funds in cash, which exceeded the amount authorized by law, without going through the financial institutions.

Belgore and Sulaiman were also alleged to have paid the 50 million Naira to Sheriff Shagaya, without going through the banks.

The offences according to the prosecutor, Mr. Oyedepo, are contrary to Sections 18(a), 15(2)(d),1(a), 16(d) and punishable under sections 15(3) and 4, 16 (2)(b), and 16(d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act, 2012.

The defendants pleaded not guilty to all the charges and the EFCC swiftly called its first witness, Timothy Olaobaju, a banker.

In his evidence, the witness, Olaobaju told the court that the former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs Diezani Alison-Madueke, stashed a sum of $115,010,000 in his bank with instructions for the money to be changed it into naira and distributed among certain individuals in the 36 states of the federation.

The beneficiaries according to the witness included the two defendants who both received 450million Naira and filled a receipt form to acknowledge the payment.

The receipt form filled by the defendants were then tendered by the EFCC and admitted by the courts as exhibits in the case.

Lawyers to the defendants took turns to plead with the court for an adjournment, to enable them adequately prepare for the cross-examination of the witness.

The court granted their request and adjourned the matter till Tuesday, March 14, 2017 for cross-examination of the witness, and continuation of trial.


Source: Channels TV

Obasanjo and Jonathan are alive, they have not denied their roles in Malabu – Adoke

Mohammed Adoke, former attorney-general of the federation (AGF), has written a letter to Abubakar Malami, minister of justice, maintaining his innocence in the controversial Malabu oil deal.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has alleged that Adoke exchanged more than $2.2 million in a bureau de change in Abuja as part of his own share, an allegation he denied.

Adoke wondered why the anti-graft agency singled him out for prosecution when he did not commit any illegality.

He said at least three presidents were involved in the deal, and that apart from Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, former Presidents Olusegun Obasanjo and Goodluck Jonathan have not denied scrutinising the terms of settlement in the deal.

Adoke said he was being vilified for choosing to serve his fatherland.

“I anxiously want to know where I went wrong that I have been singled out by the EFCC for prosecution,” he wrote.

“I also want to know the effect of section 5 of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended with respect to the vesting of all the executive powers of the federation in the president to exercise by himself and or through his ministers and appointees.

“What is the effect of section 5 of the constitution on persons who act pursuant to lawful Presidential approvals? This is more so as two out of the three presidents that had the opportunity to scrutinise this settlement (Presidents Obasanjo and Jonathan) are alive. Have they disowned the settlement? Has our predecessor in office, Chief Bayo Ojo, SAN distanced himself from the settlement he brokered?

“Have the honourable ministers of petroleum resources and finance at the time of implementation of the settlement (Mrs Diezani Allison-Madueke, CON and Dr. Olusegun Aganga, respectively) disowned the settlement or their signatures? It is my respectful view that Nigerians deserve answers to these questions as it will help them and my humble self to understand the actions and the machinations of the EFCC masquerading to be acting in the national interest while surreptitiously deploying state resources and machinery to promote the personal agenda of their cohorts.”

Adoke appealed to Malami to ensure that state institutions are not hijacked and used as a tool for vendetta.

He also said he was ready to face justice if anything incriminating is found on him.

“I wish to use this medium to appeal to the honourable attorney-general of the federation to be mindful of his overarching powers over public prosecution and the need to ensure that state institutions do not become persecutors or instruments in the hands of those pursing personal vendetta,” he said.

“The constitution and the traditions of our noble profession demand your oversight over public prosecution.

“Consequently, if you find that I had breached my oath of office or abused my office, please do not hesitate to bring me to justice.

“However, if it is the contrary, as I strongly believe, that certain individuals who had vowed to even scores with me are now being aided by state institutions such as the EFCC; I deserve protection from these unwarranted attacks and dehumanising treatment that I am being subjected to merely because I chose to serve my fatherland.”


Source: The Cable

EFCC slams 6-count charge against former NNPC boss, Yakubu

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Friday slammed a six-count charge on a former Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mr Andrew Yakubu.

The charge was contained in court papers filed on March 9 at the Federal High Court Abuja.

According to the charge sheet, made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Yakubu was accused of failing to make full disclosure in his Assests Declaration form of the sums of 9,772 800 dollars and 74,000 pounds contrary to Srction 27 (3)(a) of the EFCC act 2004.

He was also accused of receiving a cash payment of the said sums without going through a financial institution thereby committing an offence under the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2011.

The former NNPC boss was further charged with receiving the same amount when he fully knew that the said fund formed part of proceed of unlawful activity.

This, according to the charge sheet, run counter to Section 7 (4) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act 2006.

The EFCC had in February found about $9.8m and 74,000 pounds kept in a run down bungalow in Sabon Tasha a suburb of Kaduna, which it said was concealed by Yakubu.

A court in Kano later ordered the forfeiture of the money to the federal government following a motion filed by the anti-graft agency.

However, the former NNPC boss has filed a case in another court in Kano seeking the vacation of the earlier court’s order.

He claimed that the money was proceeds of various gifts given to him while he was working with the NNPC


Source: The Guardian

EFCC witness can testify in Orji Kalu’s trial – Court

A Federal High Court, Lagos, yesterday ruled that the United Bank for Africa (UBA) member of staff, who is a witness for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), is competent to testify in the suit filed against the former governor of Abia State, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu.

The ruling of the trial judge, Mohammed Idris, followed an objection raised by the defence team on the competence of a top UBA member of staff to give evidence in the trial as a witness.

The defence team, led by Mike Ozekhome (SAN), had argued that the witness was not listed as one of the witnesses by the EFCC.However, the court agreed that the witness was not listed and therefore ordered the EFCC to file an additional proof-of-evidence that will include the name of all witnesses and summary of their statements.

After the ruling, the prosecutor, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), urged the court to allow him insert the name of the witness he intends to call in the matter on the ground that the witness came from Abia State, and that it may not be easy for him to bring her back to Lagos.

He said: “I appeal to the court and the counsel to allow me use my hand to insert the name of the witness in the additional proof-of-evidence. She came all the way from Abia State and some counsel came from Abuja too.”

But Ozekhome urged the court not to grant the prosecutor’s application, saying: “The prayer is aimed at upturning the ruling of the court.”Justice Idris, after listening to both parties, restated that Section 379 (1) (a) of ACJA is mandatory because it was introduced through legislation and is meant to protect the right of the litigant, the defendant and the public.He, thereafter, adjourned the matter to April 10, 11, 12 and 13, 2017 for continuation of trial.


Source: The Guardian

Andrew Yakubu, ex-NNPC GMD, demands N1bn and apology from EFCC.

Andrew Yakubu, former GMD) of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), has asked a federal high court in Abuja to order the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to pay him N1bn as a compensation for the violation of his rights.

In a fundamental rights enforcement suit filed through his counsel, Adeola Adedipe, Yakubu is praying the court to shield him from further investigation by the EFCC.

He is also demanding that the EFCC and attorney-general of the federation (AGF) tender a public apology to him in two widely published national dailies for the violation of his rights.

Ahmed Mohammed, the judge, has fixed Thursday for the hearing of the suit filed by Yakubu against the EFCC and the AGF.

On February 3, operatives of the anti-graft agency raided a building of the former NNPC chief, and recovered the sum of $9.8m and £74,000 stashed in a fire-proof safe.

On February 8, Yakubu reported to the EFCC Kano zonal office where he allegedly admitted being the owner of both the house and the recovered money.


Source: The Cable

Court adjourns Patience Jonathan’s suit against EFCC

A federal court in Lagos has, again, adjourned the suit filed by former first lady, Patience Jonathan, seeking to unfreeze bank accounts she claims belong to her.

The judge adjourned proceedings to April 6 after counsels requested more time to study an affidavit filed by Mike Ozekhome, counsel to the fourth and fifth defendants.

Mrs. Jonathan had sued the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission after the agency froze the bank accounts containing a total of $15 million.

She is demanding $200 million as damages.

Details later.


Source: Premium Times

2015 Elections: 202 INEC Workers Indicted by EFCC for Alleged Fraud

The Independent National Electoral Commission has said that 202 of its members  of staff who were indicted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission for allegedly receiving part of the N23bn bribe money ahead of the 2015 elections would learn their fate next week.

The INEC’s National Commissioner in charge of the South-South, Mrs. May Agbamuche-Mbu, said that the final report of an administrative panel set up by the commission to review the indictment of the personnel by the EFCC would be considered by the commission at its meeting next week, the PUNCH reports.

According to her, the 202 INEC personnel whose names appeared on the EFCC’s report were drawn from 14 states.

She stated also that the 29 members of staff of the commission were indicted and recommended for disciplinary action by the Administrative Panel’s report on the December 20, 2016 rerun election in Rivers State led by Prof. Okechukwu Ibeano.

She said that the cases involving the indicted members of staff were before the commission’s disciplinary committee.

Agbamuche-Mbu added that the commission had fulfilled its promise to overhaul its office in Rivers State.

She said the reorganisation affected the administrative secretary, all heads of department, deputy directors, and assistant directors as well as all the 23 electoral officers in charge of the commission’s local government offices.

Agbamuche-Mbu said that all the affected members of staff would be redeployed out of Rivers State immediately.

Agbamuche-Mbu added that five more RECs would be leaving the commission by March 4, 2017 (Saturday) in addition to the 28 that had already left after completing their tenure.

She listed those leaving the commission in March to include “Prof. Jacob Jatau (FCT), Mr. Segun Agbaje (Ondo), Mr. Austin Okojie (Bayelsa), Baba Abba Yusuf (Adamawa) and Mr. Nasir Ayilara (Niger).”

Investigation further revealed that three RECs are billed to leave the commission after serving out their tenure in July.

A top source in the commission listed those exiting the commission in July to include Aniedi Ikoiwak (Rivers), Baritor Kpagih  (Delta) and Habu Zarma Hinna (Taraba).

With the departure of the three RECs in July, INEC would be left with a REC, Abdulahi Kaigama of Kaduna State, if no REC had been appointed for other 36 states.


Source: The Herald

BREAKING: Ex-NNPC boss, Andrew Yakubu drags EFCC to court.

Former Group Managing Director of the National Nigerian Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Andrew Yakubu has dragged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over forfeiture order.
It would be recalled that earlier last week, Justice Zainab Bage Abubakar of the federal high court Kano, while ruling on an ex pate application filed before it by the EFCC’s counsel, ordered that the $9.8 million and 74,000 pounds recovered from Mr. Yakubu be forfeited to the federal government.
Mr. Yakubu was dragged before Justice Zainab by the commission after it recovered $9.8 million and 74,000 pounds from his residence in Kaduna state.
However, Mr. Yakubu has also dragged the commission to another federal high court sitting at Court road, Kano seeking redress on the forfeiture order.
Counsel to the former NNPC boss, Mr. Ahmed Raji, who spoke through Barrister Abdulkarim Kabiru Maude said his client had applied for motion on notice seeking the court to vacate the forfeiture order earlier granted by Justice Zainab.
The EFCC’s spokesperson at the Kano Zonal office, Idris Nadabo, while confirming the development, said the case is coming up on the 7th March, 2017 at the Federal High court sitting at Court road, Kano.
Source: Daily Trust

EFCC files corruption charges against Shell, Eni over $1.3 billion offshore block deal

Nigeria’s anti-graft agency on Thursday filed corruption charges against oil majors Shell and Eni over a $1.3 billion offshore block deal.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) accused 11 defendants of “official corruption”, according to court documents.

Shell, Eni and Agip, Eni’s Nigerian subsidiary, are alleged to have corruptly given the “aggregate sum of $801 million” to Nigerian businessmen and politicians. This is the latest probe into the controversial 2011 oil deal that highlights endemic corruption within the sector.

Italian prosecutors are also looking into the purchase of the OPL 245 block prospecting license. OPL 245 is located in deep offshore waters in the Gulf of Guinea estimated to hold at least 9 billion barrels of crude reserves.Oil majors Shell and Eni have both denied wrongdoing.

“Eni did not do anything wrong,” said the chief executive of Eni Claudio Descalzi to the Financial Times in February.

“At every stage, we have acted in compliance with all applicable law?.?.?.?Eni and Shell paid the government of Nigeria, and were not involved with the government decision on how to use such money.”

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari secured a historic first win for an opposition leader when he defeated Goodluck Jonathan in the 2015 presidential elections. He campaigned on a platform to target rampant corruption and has said “mind-boggling” sums have been stolen from the public purse.

His government has arrested a series of high-ranking officials from Jonathan’s administration on corruption charges but few have been convicted.


Source: The Guardian

Fayose paid Ozekhome from his share of Dasuki’s loot – EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has begged Justice Abdulaziz Anka of the Federal High Court in Lagos not to give Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN) access to his account in Guaranty Trust Bank which has a balance of N75m.

The anti-graft agency claimed that the money, which was paid to Ozekhome as legal fee by the Governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose, was part of the N2.26bn arms procurement fund, which a former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.), allegedly looted.

The EFCC claimed to have traced N1.22bn out of the N2.26bn Dasuki loot to Fayose.

The anti-graft agency claimed that Dasuki routed the money to Fayose through a former Minister of State for Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro.

The EFCC said this in a counter-affidavit it filed in opposition to an application by Ozekhome seeking the unfreezing of his account.

Ozekhome’s GTB account, having a balance of N75m, had since February 7, 2017, been frozen by the EFCC on the order of Justice Anka.

But Ozekhome had approached the court stating that the EFCC misrepresented facts to obtain the freezing order and urged Justice Anka to lift the freezing order.

The SAN had contended that the action of the EFCC was unconstitutional, had no legal justification, and was a gross violation of sections 36, 37 and 41 of the 1999 Constitution.

In response, however, the EFCC, in a counter affidavit deposed to by one of its prosecutors, Idris Mohammed, lamented that though it had earlier secured an interim order from Justice Mohammed Idris of the Federal High Court in Lagos to freeze Fayose’s account, the governor, through Ozekhome, went before Justice Taiwo Taiwo of the Ado Ekiti Division of the Federal High Court to obtain an order to unfreeze the account.

The EFCC prosecutor said despite the fact that Fayose was aware that it had immediately appealed Justice Taiwo’s ruling, the governor still went ahead to dissipate part of the contentious funds, paying a sum of N75m to Ozekhome who helped him to secure Justice Taiwo’s unfreezing order.

The EFCC said Ozekhome ought to have “reasonably known that the N75m was transferred to him” from Fayose’s account, which the EFCC claimed was used to retain proceeds of crime and alleged kickbacks from some contractors in Ekiti State.

The EFCC urged Justice Anka not to unfreeze Ozekhome’s account.

Justice Anka adjourned till 7, 2017 for hearing in the case.


Source: politics.naij.com

EFCC Seizes More Property Allegedly Linked To ExCustom CG Dikko

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) says it has recovered some vehicles and tricycles in a warehouse allegedly belonging to a former Comptroller-General of Customs, Abdullahi Dikko.

The Head of Operations, Kaduna zonal office of the ant-graft agency, Bappa Ibrahim, disclosed this to journalists on Tuesday in Kaduna State.

He said the vehicles and other items were allegedly recovered from Dikko’s property located at Nnamdi Azikwe by-pass in the state capital.

According to the Mr Ibrahim, this recent recovery will not be the first since the inception of the zonal office a month ago.

He added that the recovery was sequel to an intelligence report received that stolen money and properties suspected to be proceeds of crime were being warehoused at the former Customs boss’ premises.

Mr Ibrahim said upon receipt of the report, a team was put together from the Kaduna Zonal Office of the commission to carry out investigation on the matter.

He listed the items allegedly recovered from Mr Dikko to include a Nissan truck laden with imported rug carpets, a white colour Nissan Urban Bus, 2006 model also loaded with imported rugs, tricycles and motorcycles, as well as two empty fire proof safe.

The latest recovery by the EFCC is coming barely one week after the commission recovered 17 vehicles of different brands hidden inside a warehouse allegedly belonging to the former Comptroller of Customs.

They include black colour BMW 525i series – 2010 model, ash colour Hyundai Velester – 2012 model and a dark blue BMW 325i – 2003 model.

Others are black colour Land Cruiser Prado Jeep – 2014 model, a black colour Mercedes G wagon – 2013 model and a black colour BMW 335i series – 2012 model.

Also recovered were silver colour Porsche Cayene – 2009 model and gold colour Honda Accord – 2013 model.

According to the EFCC, investigation revealed that the warehouse in question actually belongs to Mr Dikko.

Mr Ibrahim has called on the public to assist the anti-graft agency with useful information about corrupt public officials, adding that the EFCC will not relent in the fight against corruption in Nigeria.


Source: Channels TV

SUBEB Asks EFCC To Hunt Non-teaching Staff Defrauding Cross-River Government

The Cross River State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) has asked the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to go after all non-teaching staff who do not carry out their duties, but yet receive salaries monthly.

The SUBEB Chairman, Dr. Stephen Odey, said the call was made in a bid to fight corruption to a standstill in the education sector.

He made the remark during the personnel verification, biometrics/image capturing and promotion interview of teaching and non-teaching staff in Boki Local Government Education Authority (LGEA) in Cross River State.

Dr. Odey condemned the high number of non-teaching staff in Boki LGEA, stressing that those who claimed to be teachers due to political settlement have contributed greatly to the near collapse of basic education in the state.

He described the development as unacceptable in the present dispensation, and appealed to the EFCC to help sanitise the sector for the benefit of future generations.

“The number of non-teaching staff here is ridiculous. This is as a result of political settlement and politics should not be played with basic education.

“The basic education sector is important for the future of our children; it is not a joke.

“You see a school of 80 pupils with six teachers and 11 non-teaching staff, or the other school with 14 non-teaching staff doing absolutely nothing.

“People are just sitting at home and collecting money from the government which is stealing.

“Why should the EFCC not come after people like them who are constantly defrauding the government?” he questioned.


Source: Channels TV

Arms scam: Obanikoro’s wife loses Abuja mansion to FG

A Federal Capital Territory High Court, sitting in Jabi, Abuja, has ordered that Alhaja Moroophat Obanikoro, the wife of a former Minister of State for Defence, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, should forfeit her property pending the outcome of investigations into her husband and children.

The court also rejected a prayer asking the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to pay her the sum of N200m for violating her fundamental human rights.

Obanikoro’s wife has, however, headed for the Appeal Court to challenge the court judgment.

As part of investigations into the $2.1bn arms scam, involving the Office of the National Security Adviser, the EFCC had traced the transfer of about N4.7bn to the Diamond Bank account of Sylvan McNamara, a company allegedly owned by Obanikoro’s two sons – Gbolahan and Babajide.

Out of the N4.7bn, Obanikoro allegedly gave N3.880bn to Ayodele Fayose and Senator Iyiola Omisore in July 2014, when they were the Peoples Democratic Party governorship candidates in Ekiti and Osun states respectively.

Part of the money allegedly given to Fayose was said to have been converted to $5.377m and handed to him at Spotless Hotel, Ado-Ekiti, in the presence of the then Ekiti State PDP Secretary, Tope Aluko, and other party stalwarts.

Obanikoro allegedly kept over N600m to himself.

The EFCC subsequently seized a house in the Ikoyi area of Lagos State allegedly belonging to Obanikoro’s sons – Gbolahan and Babajide – and a property located at 44 Mamman Kotangora Crescent, Katampke Extension, Abuja, belonging to their mother.

However, Obanikoro’s wife argued that she bought the property over seven years before the alleged arms scam took place.

She said the EFCC had no right to punish her for any crime allegedly committed by her husband and urged the court to award her N200m.

Obanikoro’s wife demanded “an order setting aside the sealing of the property; an order directing the EFCC to tender an unreserved public apology for the unlawful and unconditional invasion of the aforesaid property and the sum of N200,000,000 as general damages for the unlawful and unconstitutional invasion of the property.”

In an affidavit, deposed to by one Jackson Edet, the EFCC claimed that Obanikoro’s wife could not claim to be ignorant of her husband’s alleged crime.

The commission said Moroophat’s husband and her sons collected over N600m from the ONSA for a non-existent contract.

The EFCC argued that investigation had shown that, “the property belongs to Musiliu Obanikoro and he paid for the statutory charges for the property.”

The commission added, “That a lawyer, Tejumola Adeboye, who volunteered a statement to the commission, stated that he managed the said property and remits the rent to MON Integrated Services (a company allegedly owned by Obanikoro, which is also under probe).”

In his ruling, the Justice Y. Halilu said he could not stop the EFCC from doing its work, adding that all Nigerians must unite in the fight against corruption.

He added, “I shall refuse the application because it is most unmeritorious and specially packaged to deceive this court. God forbid.”




Former finance minister being investigated over $1.2 Billion fraud – EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) disclosed on Monday that it was investigating former Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Justice Minister, Mohammed Adoke (SAN) and a former Finance Minister in relation to $1.2billion fraud.

Although the EFCC was silent on the identify the ex-Finance Minister, it said the fresh investigation was informed by its discovery of the role Adoke allegedly played in the Malabo Oil deal, through which some prominent Nigerians allegedly defrauded the Federal Government.

The EFCC stated that Adoke is presently being investigated along with “the Finance Minister for fraudulently using Federal Government’s excrow account to receive the bribe money paid by the applicants to Malabu Oil and Gas Ltd.”

The commission made this disclosure in its counter-affidavit in reaction to applications by Nigerian Agip Exploration Limited (NAE) and Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company Ltd (SNEPCO), seeking the vacation of orders made by a Federal High Court in Abuja on January 26, 2017 for the temporary forfeiture of Oil Prospecting Licence (OPL) 245, subject of the controversial Malabu Oil deal.

The EFCC first referred to the alleged $1.2b fraud in its application for the temporary forfeiture orders.
It stated, in the application, how Shell, Agip, former Petroleum Minister, Dan Etete, Adoke and others allegedly short-changed the Nigerian government through the Malabu Oil deal.
“Shell and Agip went into a fraudulent agreement with Malabu Oil and Gas in which the companies will pay signature bonus of $210m to the Federal Government of Nigeria while the sum of $1.2b would be paid to the owners of Malabu Oil and Gas Ltd,” it said.

The EFCC added that, contrary to Shell’s claim that the $1.2b was for compensation, the investigation revealed that “the money was a bribe to Dan Etete and his cronies.

“Shell was aware, at the time of consummating this transaction, that Dan Etete, the owner of Malabu Oil and Gas Ltd, was already a convict and hence, was not willing to pay the said sum of $1.2b directly to Dan Etete and or Malabu Oil and Gas Ltd.

“One Mohammed Adoke, who was the Federal Government’s counsel in series of arbitration instituted by Shell in London on the said oil well and, who later became the AGF, conspired with Shell/Agip to route the payment of the said sum of $1.2b bribe money through FG’s excrow account with JP Morgan Chase Bank,” EFCC said.

In its counter-affidavit, which was argued yesterday, the EFCC said, although it has filed charges against Adoke and some others, its fresh investigation was informed by new revelations.
It said investigation so far conducted “revealed that the 1st applicant (Agip) conspired with others to defraud the Federal Government of Nigeria of the sum of $1.2b that should. Rightly have gone to the Federation Account,” it said.

The EFCC added that contrary to claim by Agip and Shell that the forfeiture orders were wrongly granted by the court, its investigation revealed that the applicants (Agip and Shell) and others conspired to fleece the Nigerian government of over $1b in bribery and revenue.
Arguing the counter affidavit yesterday, EFCC’s lawyer, Johnson Ojogbane, urged the court to dismiss the applications by Agip and Shell for lacking in merit.
Ojogbane contended that contrary to the claim by the applicants, OPL 245 was a tangible asset which was a subject of criminal investigation and prosecution.
Ojogbane said, “OPL 245 is an oil block. It is a tangible oil block. The order my lord gave was to prevent any step or action on the oil block,” he said.
Ojogbane contended that the argument by Konyinsola Ajayi (SAN) and Babatunde Fagbohunlu (SAN) for the applicants, on the constitutionality the temporary forfeiture order was completely misconceived.
He added that “Section 44(2)(k) Constitution allows the temporary taking of property for the purpose of any examination or inquiry.

“So it does not in any way offend the Constitution. The OPL 245 is a subject of criminal investigation and prosecution. It is not just investigation, there is a charge pending now before this court.
“The application is not just to preserve the res (the subject matter), the activities surrounding OPL 245, is criminal. It can be described as proceeds of crime.
“Other charges will be following. With th forfeiture, we are stopping criminality from progressing,” Ojogbane said.
Ajayi (for Shell) argued that the OPL 245 was not such property that could be seized by an order of court as contemplated under Sections 28 and 29 of the EFCC Act, on which the EFCC relied in applying for the forfeiture orders.

Ajayi said: “What we have is a chosen action, a mere licence, an intangible right that is incapable of destruction or being moved. It is a licence over thousands of miles on the ocean. The ocean cannot be destroyed.

“Nothing can be destroyed; nothing can be taken away, nothing can be put under the seal of the EFCC, nothing can be seized by the EFCC,” he said.
Ajayi maintained that by virtue of sections 28 and 29 of EFCC Act, the Chairman of EFCC, in whose name the ex parte application filed by the anti-graft agency was initiated, was not the proper person to institute the action.

Sections 28 and 29 of the EFCC Act, he argued, envisage that the ex parte application for interim forfeiture is filed in the name of the EFCC and not its chairman.

“Having been brought by an improper person, the jurisdiction and powers of the court have not been activated,” he said.
Ajayi further contended that the order of interim forfeiture was unnecessary as without it, neither Shell nor Agip could take any action on the OPL 245 except it was authorised by the Federal Government.

He contended that under Section 28 of the EFCC Act, certain conditions precedent, including arresting of suspects and tracing of the assets had not been complied with before the application for forfeiture was filed.

Fagbohunlu (for Agip) argued that an order of forfeiture could not be granted through an ex parte motion except through a motion on notice.
He said, “Is it possible for the EFCC to attach and subsequently forfeit asset of a subject in the proceedings which from start to the end is on an exparte basis?“My response is that the answer that my lord should give is an emphatic no,” he said.

Fagbohunlu contended that it was against the spirit of the Constitution for an asset to be seized from someone without being heard.
He added: “Sections 28 and 29 of the EFCC Act do not even purport that the proceedings for forfeiture of an asset can be conducted on ex parte throughout.

“There is nothing in section 28 that says an interim order can be applied for through ex parte.That application has to be on notice.
What then follows is the forfeiture proceedings which can be done ex parte,” Fagbohunlu said.
Justice John Tsoho adjourned to March 13 for ruling.



Two ex-Ministers under probe for $1.2bn fraud – EFCC

NIMASA fraud: EFCC withdraws charges against four accused

A Federal High Court in Lagos on Friday struck out the names of four accused charged with N3.4 billion fraud alongside a former Director-General of NIMASA, Patrick Akpobolokemi.

Mr. Akpobolokemi, a former D-G Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, was charged with nine others on a 40-count charge bordering on fraud.

Other accused charged with him are: Ezekiel Agaba, Ekene Nwakuche, Felix Bob-Nabena, Warredi Enisouh, Governor Juan, Ugo Frederick and Timi Alari.

Also charged with him are two companies: Al-kenzo Ltd., and Penniel Engineering Services Ltd.

They were arraigned before Justice Saliu Saidu and had all pleaded not guilty to the charges and granted bail by the court.

However, following the transfer of Mr. Saidu from Lagos to the Port Harcourt division of the court, the case was re-assigned to Justice Ayokunle Faji.

On Friday, the prosecuting counsel, Festus Afeyiodion, informed the court of an amended 22-count charge, in which the names of four accused had been withdrawn.

The four accused withdrawn from the charges are: Governor Juan, Ugo Frederick, Timi Alari, and Penniel Engineering Services Limited.

He urged the court to strike out the names of the four accused, while a fresh plea by the remaining accused should be taken.

The counsel to Mr. Juan, Ige Asemudara, expressed mixed feeling while reacting to the withdrawal.

Mr. Asemudara said that his client had been tormented, embarrassed, and emotionally tortured for the past two years on account of the charges.

He said that the damages done to Mr. Juan’s career and his family, were monumental, but gave all the glory to God.

Consequently, Justice Faji granted the prayers of the prosecution, and struck out the names of the four accused.

Meanwhile, another defence counsel, E.D. Onyeike, raised an objection to the appearance of the prosecutor (Afeyiodion) on the grounds that he could not prosecute without a fiat.

The court has, however, fixed March 17, for arguments on whether or not the prosecutor had a right to prosecute.

In the charge, the accused were alleged to have committed the offences between December 2013 and July 2015.

They were alleged to have converted over N3.4 billion belonging to NIMASA to their personal uses.

The offences contravened Sections 15 (1), (3), and 18 (a) of the Money Laundering (prohibition) Amendment Act., 2012.


Source: NAN

EFCC disowns ‘auctioneer’ of seized petroleum products.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has dissociated itself from one Messrs Pinnacle Trading and Investment Nig. Ltd. allegedly parading itself as its authorised auctioneers.

The spokesman of the EFCC, Wilson Uwujaren, issued the disclaimer in a statement in Abuja on Friday.

Mr. Uwujaren said the company was claiming to have been appointed by the commission to auction impounded petroleum products aboard the MT Good Success and MT Asteris.

He stated that the letters of engagement being paraded by Messrs Pinnacle Trading and Investment Nig. Ltd were fraudulent.

According to him, the commission is currently investigating the origin of the alleged spurious letters with a view to bringing the perpetrators to book.

He said the commission had not authorised anyone to act on its behalf in respect of the MT Good Success and MT Asteris vessels, warning members of the public to refrain from any related activity.

“It would be recalled that the vessels and their operators were arrested by the Nigerian Navy for engaging in illegal activities and handed over to the EFCC.

“By virtue of two judgments of Justice I.N. Buba of the Federal High Court, Lagos, on Dec. 15, 2015, their operators were convicted.

“The vessels and their contents totaling 4,882.097 metric ton of Premium Motor Spirit and Crude oil, were forfeited to the Federal Government,’’ Mr. Uwujaren said.

He emphasised that the EFCC had neither entered into any contract with, nor appointed Messrs Pinnacle Trading and Investment Nig. Ltd., to act on its behalf on any matter.

The EFCC spokesman urged the public to report anyone parading himself as an auctioneer or agent regarding the MT Good Success and MT Asteris vessels and their contents to the commission or the nearest police station.


Source: NAN

Ex-Airforce Boss Amosu Objects As EFCC Tenders Incriminating Documents In Court

Former Air Marshal Adesola Amosu (Rtd) yesterday objected to a move by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to tender some bank documents that showed how connived with some others to defraud the Nigeria Air Force (NAF).

At the resumed trial, counsel for the commission, Rotimi Oyedepo, sought the court’s leave to call on Tosin Owobo, an operative of the EFCC who is also a witness in the ongoing trial, to tender some letters obtained during investigations.

Owobo revealed that he obtained some documents from Heritage Bank, First City Monument Bank (FCMB), Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB), Skye Bank, United Bank for Africa (UBA), Fidelity, Keystone and Diamond Bank, that showed details of how monies were moved by companies linked to the former Chief of Air Staff.

Mr. Oyedepo then asked to tender one of the letters from FCMB as evidence before the court Bolaji Ayorinde, counsel to Amosu, objected.  He claimed that the letter cannot be taken as evidence having been certified by EFCC and signed by the witness who is not the maker of the letter.

According to Ayorinde: “The witness is not the maker of the letter even though he claimed to have come across it in the course of an investigation. He cannot tender a document certified by him in favor of his commission.”

He argued that only the bank, being the originator, could certify the documents, and urged the court to reject them as being inadmissible.

Norrisson Quakers, the counsel to the second defendant, expressed the same view, adding that since the letter was not a public document but originated from a private institution, it cannot be admitted in evidence.

Quakers further claimed that EFCC was not in the position to certify the document, adding that one of the criteria for certifying any document was the cost of certification, which was not shown by the prosecutor.

Affirming that the witness was the same person who certified the letter, he called on the court to let it “fly out through the window”.

Oyedepo, responding to the defense lawyers, attempted to withdraw the letter.

“I will not be joining issues with the senior advocates and my learned colleagues because I still have questions to ask the witness,” he said.  “So, because of time, I move to withdraw the letter.”

Ayorinde objected, saying that although the prosecutor could withdraw the letter if he so wished, the court must mark it as rejected.

Mr. Quakers also added that the prosecution could not withdraw the letter after the defense had objected to its admissibility and that Mr. Oyedepo ought to have withdrawn it before counsel argued. He also claimed that the move by the prosecutor to withdraw the letter showed the potency of their argument.

In ruling, Justice Ibrahim Idris agreed that the prosecution could not withdraw a document that had been argued, and could only argue the objection.

The matter was subsequently adjourned to February 24.

Amosu was arraigned alongside a former NAF Chief of Accounts and Budgeting, Air Vice Marshal Jacob Adigun, and a former Director of Finance and Budget, Air Commodore Olugbenga Gbadebo, for money laundering and conspiracy.


Source: Sahara Reporters

“I cannot proceed with this trial”, Olisa Metuh tells judge.

Former National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Olisa Metuh has told an Abuja Federal High Court that he will not proceed with his trial.

Metuh’s stance followed the ruling of Justice Okon Abang rejecting his application to compel the Department of State Services (DSS) to produce former NSA, Col. Sambo Dasuki to testify in the case.

Justice Abang in his ruling accused Metuh of using different tactics, including all manner of adjournments beyond the five stipulated under the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA,2015)  to   delay the trial.

He therefore dismissed the application for lack of merit and an after thought. He ordered Metuh to continue his defence.

But Meruh’s counsel, Onyechi Ikpeazu (SAN) expressed disappointment with the ruling of the court, and the comments by the court against Metuh.

“The court has in a very surprising manner accused the the first defendant of using all manner of delay tactics,” he said. There is absolutely no way the first defendant will trial any further in the court.”

Metuh had in December 2016 applied for a subpoena to compel Dasuki to appear and testify in the charges the N400 million transfered to him is a proceed of unlawful act.

Video evidence of $1M cash recovered from Badeh presented in court by EFCC.

A Federal High Court sitting in Maitama, Abuja, presided over by Justice Okon Abang on Wednesday admitted in evidence the search warrant used by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, in conducting a search on a house located at No. 6, Ogun Rivers Street, Maitama, Abuja belonging to a former Chief of Defence Staff, Alex Badeh. during which $1million cash was recovered in his wardrobe.

Mr. Badeh is standing trial alongside Iyalikam Nigeria Limited on a 10-count charge bordering on money laundering, criminal breach of trust and corruption to the tune of N3.97 billion.

He allegedly abused his office as CDS by using the dollar equivalent of the sum of N1.4 billion removed from the accounts of the Nigerian Air Force to purchase properties in choice areas of Abuja between January and December, 2013.

At the last sitting, the EFCC through its PW15, Mohammed Goji, told the court how a search conducted on the house of the former CDS led to the recovery of the money.

Attempt by the prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Jacobs to tender the search warrant, a red box and the waybill as evidence was, however, objected to by Mr. Badeh’s counsel, Lasun Sanusi.

Mr. Sanusi argued that the documents were purportedly obtained from an illegal search.

According to him, the law gave the owner of the property the impetus to nominate a representative to witness such search if he or she could not be present.

“It is on record that the defendant was still in detention when the purported search was done in his house at Maitama which is a clear violation of the law.

“My Lord, we are not against the court admitting the search warrant as evidence but we vehemently oppose to the admissibility of the other items,’’ he said.

In response, Mr. Jacobs argued that Section 149 and 150 of ACJA which deals with house search warrant permitted the presence of two witnesses and the person the warrant is addressed to. He went further to explain how the witness can be any one in the neighbourhood.

Justice Abang in his ruling on the admissibility of the documents at the resumed sitting on Wednesday held that, “the first search warrant dated February 3, 2016 and executed on February 11, 2016 was not objected to” and it’s marked at exhibit T103.

The judge also held that issue of the legality of the item “is premature at this time” adding that, “it’s an issue for evidence in the final address”.

Consequently, the documents were admitted as exhibits T104, T105, T106 respectively.

Under further cross-examination, the PW15 insisted that the search was conducted in line with the enabling law and was recorded in a video clip.

Mr. Jacobs sought to tender the clip in evidence saying, “I will like to tender the DVD containing the search in evidence”, but its admissibility was again objected to by Mr. Sanusi, who said the document never came as part of the proof of evidence.

Mr. Sanusi added that, “we are seeing it for the first time in court even in civil cases we are to be given a copy of evidence so that we don’t fall into an ambush”.

He, therefore, asked for adjournment to enable him go through the evidence with his client.

Justice Abang after listening to the submissions of both counsel ordered the prosecution to oblige the defence with a copy of the clip and other documents they might wish to tender as evidence in the course of the trial.

The judge, thereafter, adjourned to March 20 – 23 for continuation of trial.


Source: Premium Times

Obanikoro sues EFCC over seizure of property, demands apology.

A former Minister of State for Defence, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, has sued the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) at the Federal High Court, Lagos over the seizure and detention of his property.

The ex-minister and his family are seeking a court’s declaration that the forceful seizure of their personal effects constitutes a gross violation of their rights.

The applicants include Obanikoro’s wife Moroophat, his sons Gbolahon, Babajide and wife Fati. The applicants are praying the court for an order, setting aside the forceful detention of their properties on June 14, 2016.

EFCC claimed Obanikoro received suspicious payments from the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) through companies linked to the family.

For instance, the Commission said that about $1million was transferred from the ONSA to Mob Integrated Services on March 18, 2015. But, the family, through their counsel, Mr. Lawal Pedro (SAN), said the documents and properties seized by the EFCC had nothing to do with the ONSA.

They claimed that the Commission violated Regulation 13 of the EFCC (Enforcement Regulation) 2010, which provides that it shall “apply and obtain” a court order to enter and search any premises.

However, EFCC has urged the court to dismiss the suit, insisting that it acted in accordance with the provisions of the law. Justice Abdulazeez Anka has fixed March 28 for ruling.

EFCC to interrogate Dino Melaye, AMMC on Saraki’s ‘invisible’ N125m house.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) will invite Dino Melaye, chairman senate committee on FCT, for questioning over an “invisible” N125 million building purportedly rented for the senate president, TheCable has learnt.

The commission will also invite officials of the Abuja Metropolitan Management Council (AMMC) for interrogation.

The property is said to be located at Plot 973, Mban Close, off Pope John Paul Street, Maitama, Abuja, rented at N50 million per year on a two-year tenancy, with fees and VAT bringing the total cost to N125 million.

But the building could not be traced by TheCable after several searches.

TheCable had reported that the AMMC – in league with Melaye’s committee – rented the property from Legendark Consultants for the senate president.

The senate president, who lives in his own house at Lake Chad Crescent, Maitama, has since denied knowledge of the deal.

TheCable had also reported that a second house purportedly rented for Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu at Plot 22, Vaal Street, off Rhine Street, Maitama, Abuja, is unoccupied.

Ekweremadu still lives at his personal residence at the Apo Legislative Quarters, and his media aide, Uche Anichukwu, said he is not aware of the property.

Curiously, the key players in the affair refused to pick up calls or reply to SMS from TheCable.

However, an official of the EFCC has told TheCable that the agency will invite the principal actors for questioning “anytime from now”.

TheCable understands that officials of the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), which superintends the AMMC, have confirmed that payment was actually made for the property.

But Melaye has described the documents as “made in Taiwan”.


Source: The Cable

Native doctor arrested for alleged N2.4 million scam

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Wednesday, arraigned Bala Tangalu before Justice A. B. Mohammed of the Federal Capital Territory High Court sitting in Jabi, Abuja on a 2-count charge of conspiracy and obtaining by false pretence to the tune of N2.5 million.

Mr. Tangalu, a self-styled native doctor, also known as Babalawo, was arrested following a petition by one Dozie Ugonna, who alleged that he was scammed of over N2.5 million by the accused and his cohorts.

According to the petitioner, the money was meant for the purchase of materials to neutralize some harmful charms purportedly contained in a carton filled with United States dollars.

The offence is contrary to Section 8 (a) and punishable under Section 8 (C) and 1 (3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act No. 14, 2006.

The accused person pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Upon his plea, counsel to the EFCC, Elizabeth Alabi, asked the court to fix a date for trial and remand the accused in prison custody pending trial.

She urged the court to consider the weight of the offence, which according to her carries a minimum of seven year jail term.

However, counsel to the accused, Yusuf Abdullahi, told the court he had a pending bail application before the court. He added that the accused had been granted administrative bail by the EFCC which he had not breached and urged the court to adopt same bail condition.

Justice Mohammed granted bail to the accused in the sum of N2 million with two sureties in like sum. The sureties must be a civil servant or a community leader.

The case has been adjourned to March 20, 2017 for trial.


Source: Premium Times

BREAKING: EFCC ‘recovers’ 17 vehicles from Dikko, ex-customs CG.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) says it has recovered 17 exotic vehicles from Abdullahi Dikko, a former comptroller-general (CG) of Nigeria customs service.

The vehicles were said to be found in Dikko’s warehouse at Nnamdi Azikwe street in Kaduna.

The anti-graft agency said the recovery was made after it recieved an information “proceeds of crime” were being stored in the warehouse.

“Upon receipt of the intelligence, a team of operatives from the Kano zonal office were deployed to carry out the investigation,” the EFCC said in a statement.

“On arrival at the location, two individuals who were discovered to be the custodians of the property, Dantala Mohammed and Ahmed Balarabe were presented with a search warrant.


“Upon executing the search warrant, a total of seventeen amongst them brand new cars, shuttle buses and SUVs were discovered.

“Consequently, the vehicles and the two individuals who are now also suspects in the investigation were conveyed to the commission’s zonal offices in Kaduna and Kano respectively for further investigation which revealed that the warehouse in question actually belongs to the former customs boss.”

The vehicles were listed as:

i. Black colour BMW 525i series, 2010 model with chassis number WBAFR7108BC262936.

ii. ASH colour Hyundai Velester, 2012 model with chassis number KMHTC6AD4CU056038.

iii. Dark Blue BMW 325i, 2003 model with chassis number WBAEV31090KL48386.

iv. Black colour Land Cruiser Prado Jeep, 2014 model with chassis number JTEBU3FJ50K082080.

v. Black colour Mercedes G wagon, 2013 model with chassis number WDB4632361X207661.

vi. Black colour BMW 335i series, 2012 model with chassis number WBA3A91040F268895.

vii. Silver colour Peugeot 406, 2002 model with chassis number VF3BBRFNR81519018.

viii. Black colour Land Cruiser Prado Jeep, 2014 model with chassis number JTEBU3FJ10K082352.

ix. Yellow colour Toyota FJ Jeep, 2007 model with chassis number JTEZU11F68K001301.

x. Black Toyota Avensis, 2013 model with chassis number SBIBL76L20E037245.

xi. Dark ash colour KIA Cadenza, 2011 model with chassis number KNALN414BC5093288.

xii. Silver colour Porsche Cayene, 2009 model with chassis number WPIZZZ9PZ9LA12738.

xiii. Golden colour Honda Accord, 2013 model with chassis number IHGCR2634DA620609.

xiv. White colour Nissan Urban Bus, 2006 model JNITF4E25Z0715833.

xv. White colour Nissan Urban Bus, 1996 model with chassis number JTFJXO29P605023996.

xvi. White Toyota Hiace Bus, 2010 model with chassis number JTGJXO2P4B5020268.

xvii. White Nissan Bus, 2009 model with chassis number JNITA4E250011697.


Source: The Cable

We found $1m cash in Badeh’s wardrobe, says witness

A prosecution witness in the ongoing trial of Alex Badeh, ex-chief of defence staff, on Tuesday told the federal high court, Abuja, that his team recovered one million dollar cash from Badeh’s house.

Goji Mohammed, the 15th witness to testify in Badeh’s trial, said he was part of the EFCC team, led by Isyaku Sharu, that conducted the search in Badeh’s house in Asokoro, Abuja.

Badeh is standing trial on money laundering offence he allegedly committed while serving as chief of air staff.

The witness also said the team recovered some bank documents, land documents, tax documents and few other instruments.

Mohammed said the commission received intelligence report on another property located at 6 Ogun River Street Maitama, which was found to be Badeh’s property.

He said they accessed the building by climbing the balcony, adding that the security man of the neigbouring house was invited to witness the search.

“When we climbed in, we were in the living area upstairs so we used the stairs and went to the living area downstairs and started our search from there,” he said.

“When we got to the biggest room in the house, we saw a wardrobe, on opening it, we saw a bag and on opening it contained foreign currency.

“We saw 16 bundles of 50 US dollars notes and two sealed bundles containing 100,000 US dollars which we estimated to amount one million US dollars.

“On further counting the money in our office we discovered it was exactly one million dollars.”

He said they also found a red box, which he could not precisely remember what was inside, but added that they also found two way bills of furniture supplied to the building.

When the prosecution sought to tender the search warrant, the red box and the way bill as evidence, the move was objected to by the defence team.

Lasun Sanusi, counsel for the defendant objected to the admissibility of the items, saying they were purportedly obtained from an illegal search.

Sanusi cited section 115 of administration of criminal justice act (ACJA) 2015, which states that the occupant of a place searched or a relation shall be at the house and see the items seized.

He said no provisions of law permitted state security agents to conduct search by looking for strangers on the street to witness it.

Sanusi said the law gave the owner of the property the impetus to nominate a representative to witness such search if he or she could not be present.

“My Lord, the witness had earlier confirmed that when they were to conduct search on the defendant’s house at Asokoro, they took him along to witness the search, why was this other one different,” he said.

“It is on record that the defendant was still in detention when the purported search was done in his house at Maitama which is a clear violation of the law.

“My Lord, we are not against the court admitting the search warrant as evidence but we vehemently oppose to the admissibility of the other items.”

On his part, Rotimi Jacobs, prosecution counsel, argued that section 149 and 150 of ACJA, which deals with house search warrant permitted the presence of two witnesses.

“This permission covers the person to whom the warrant is addressed and a neighbour within the neighbourhood the property is located.”

According to him, the provision allows the person to whom warrant is addressed to look for a witness in the neighbourhood.

He, therefore, argued that no provision of the law compelled the property owner to be present before a search warrant can be executed.

Okon Abang, however, adjourned the matter till February 22 for continuation.

“Alex Badeh stashed $1 Million cash in his wardrobe”, prosecution witness reveals.

A prosecution witness in the ongoing trial of Alex Badeh, ex-chief of defence staff, on Tuesday told the federal high court, Abuja, that his team recovered one million dollar cash from Badeh’s house.

Goji Mohammed, the 15th witness to testify in Badeh’s trial, said he was part of the EFCC team, led by Isyaku Sharu, that conducted the search in Badeh’s house in Asokoro, Abuja.

Badeh is standing trial on money laundering offence he allegedly committed while serving as chief of air staff.

The witness also said the team recovered some bank documents, land documents, tax documents and few other instruments.

Mohammed said the commission received intelligence report on another property located at 6 Ogun River Street Maitama, which was found to be Badeh’s property.

He said they accessed the building by climbing the balcony, adding that the security man of the neigbouring house was invited to witness the search.

“When we climbed in, we were in the living area upstairs so we used the stairs and went to the living area downstairs and started our search from there,” he said.

“When we got to the biggest room in the house, we saw a wardrobe, on opening it, we saw a bag and on opening it contained foreign currency.

“We saw 16 bundles of 50 US dollars notes and two sealed bundles containing 100,000 US dollars which we estimated to amount one million US dollars.

“On further counting the money in our office we discovered it was exactly one million dollars.”

He said they also found a red box, which he could not precisely remember what was inside, but added that they also found two way bills of furniture supplied to the building.

When the prosecution sought to tender the search warrant, the red box and the way bill as evidence, the move was objected to by the defence team.

Lasun Sanusi, counsel for the defendant objected to the admissibility of the items, saying they were purportedly obtained from an illegal search.

Sanusi cited section 115 of administration of criminal justice act (ACJA) 2015, which states that the occupant of a place searched or a relation shall be at the house and see the items seized.

He said no provisions of law permitted state security agents to conduct search by looking for strangers on the street to witness it.

Sanusi said the law gave the owner of the property the impetus to nominate a representative to witness such search if he or she could not be present.

“My Lord, the witness had earlier confirmed that when they were to conduct search on the defendant’s house at Asokoro, they took him along to witness the search, why was this other one different,” he said.

“It is on record that the defendant was still in detention when the purported search was done in his house at Maitama which is a clear violation of the law.

“My Lord, we are not against the court admitting the search warrant as evidence but we vehemently oppose to the admissibility of the other items.”

On his part, Rotimi Jacobs, prosecution counsel, argued that section 149 and 150 of ACJA, which deals with house search warrant permitted the presence of two witnesses.

“This permission covers the person to whom the warrant is addressed and a neighbour within the neighbourhood the property is located.”

According to him, the provision allows the person to whom warrant is addressed to look for a witness in the neighbourhood.

He, therefore, argued that no provision of the law compelled the property owner to be present before a search warrant can be executed.

Okon Abang, however, adjourned the matter till February 22 for continuation.


Source: The Cable

Andrew Yakubu Drags EFCC To Court Over Forfeiture Of ‘His’ $9.7 Million

Mr. Andrew Yakubu, the former managing director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, whose ‘gift’ of  $9.7million and  £74,000 was hidden in a nondescript house in Sabon Tasha in Kaduna city, has launched a move to have the  seized money returned to him.

The Vanguard reported that Yakubu has filed a petition before a Federal High Court in Kano, urging it  to order the Federal Government to return the money valued at N3billion to him. No date for the hearing was reported.

According to some earlier reports, he told the EFCC that the money was a gift.

The suit was filed on his behalf by Mr. Ahmed Raji, SAN.

Andrew asked the court to set aside the forfeiture order that granted FG ownership of the money which was discovered by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on February 9.

Specifically, he wants the court to set aside the order and return the $9,772,800 and £74,000,000 which he said belongs to him.

The former NNPC boss insisted that the court lacked the jurisdiction to grant FG ownership of his money.

According to him, the court  lacks the  jurisdiction to entertain the motion that culminated to the forfeiture order since it related to a crime that was alleged committed in Abuja.

Raji contended that going by section 45 of the Federal High Court Act, an offence should be tried only by a court exercising jurisdiction in the area or place where the offence was committed.

“No aspect of the perceived offence in respect of which the Order of February 13, 2017 was made, was committed within the Kano judicial division of this Honourable Court”, Raji argued.

He further maintained that FG lacked the locus-standi to seek the interim order of the court granted on February 13.

“By Section 28 of the EFCC Act, only the commission, i.e. the EFCC has the vires to seek an order for the interim forfeiture of property under the Act.

“The power of this Honourable Court to make interim forfeiture order(s) pursuant to sections 28 & 29 of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Act, 2004 (herein after referred to a “EFCC Act”) is applicable ONLY to alleged offences charged under the EFCC Act and not to offences cognizable under any other law.

“The ex-parte order of this honourable court dated February 13, 2017, was made in respect of alleged offences under the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission Act (herein after “ICPC Act”) and not the EFCC Act as prescribed by section 28 & 29 thereof.

“The conditions precedent to the grant of an interim forfeiture order under sections 28 & 29 of the EFCC Act were not complied with by the Applicant (FG) before the Order was made”, he submitted.

Yakubu was Group Managing Director of the NNPC between 2012 and 2014.

He was sacked by the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan for alleged insubordination and corruption.


Source: Sahara Reporters

BREAKING: Ex-Katsina governor Ibrahim Shema, granted N1bn bail.

Ibrahim Shema, former governor of Katsina state, has been granted bail to the tune of N1 billion.

Shema and three others were Tuesday arraigned before a Katsina state high court on 22 count charges of misappropriation of about N11 billion and forgery of government documents.

The ex-governor and his three co-accused were arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) before justice Maikaita Bako over financial misappropriation and abuse of office between 2012 and 2015.

Shema broke down in tears after operatives of the EFCC arrested him on February 7.

The anti-graft agency had in September declared him wanted for allegedly refusing to honour its invitation.

Shema has denied the allegations of corruption levelled against him, accusing Bello Masari, his successor, of being responsible for his legal troubles.


Source: The Cable

EFCC Includes Women In Anti-graft War – Ibrahim Magu

The Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Mr. Ibrahim Magu, has revealed that the agency is incorporating women in the anti graft war.

Mr Magu gave this revelation on Tuesday while visiting the Chairman of Channels Media Group Mr. John Momoh.

He also denied allegation that a suspect recently died in the EFCC custody.

According to his family, Mr Nunugwo died on June 9, 2016, after he was arrested by the EFCC for his alleged role in a 91 million Naira fraud.

The lawyer to the family, Mr Paul Edeh, led relatives of the victim to the Ministry of Justice, where they had a private meeting with the Justice Minister.

Mr Edeh said that the Minister gave a directive that the issue be investigated and promised to get back to the family in a matter of days.

Wife of the deceased, Mrs Susanne Nunugwo, lamented that she had not been able to see the corpse of her husband since his death two months ago.

She requested that her husband’s name be cleared as he had been declared guilty by the EFCC and was no longer alive to defend himself.

This will be his second to Channels Television since taking over as Acting Chairman of the EFCC.

Senate challenges EFCC to investigate NNPC, CBN, finance ministry.

A senate committee has challenged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to investigate officials of the finance ministry, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

The lawmakers threw the gauntlet at Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the EFCC, on Monday when he appeared before the senate committee on anti-corruption and financial crimes for the 2017 budget defence.

Isa Misau, a member of the committee, urged the EFCC to pay attention to unoccupied houses in Abuja, saying a lot of transactions are made on them with “ill-gotten money”.

Misau said the $9.8million and other sums recovered at the residence of Andrew Yakubu, former group managing director of NNPC, was one case out of many.

“Today, I am giving it as a challenge to the EFCC to go and see what the NNPC or CBN or the finance ministry is doing,” he said.

“This is an era of whistle-blowing. I am blowing my whistle: go and check CBN. That is the reason why, today, we have (this) recession. Today, dollar, at the parallel market, is N520. And there are allegations against the CBN; the way they give these dollars.

“This committee is challenging the EFCC to go and look at these records: what is our revenue in dollars? Who are the people collecting these dollars?

“Go and see unoccupied buildings in Asokoro, Maitama and Wuse 2 (all in Abuja). For over five years, nobody will be there (in the buildings). And EFCC is not looking at these houses. A lot of transactions are taking place with ill-gotten money to the tune of N2bn or N3bn, and somebody will bring the money in cash to buy a house.

“Without digging into these landed properties and knowing their owners, you may end up being only after somebody who just left office, and arresting and detaining them for one week, and they will get bailed. And the business continues.”

Misau also complained about the short detention period of suspected looters, noting that the senate was ready to work with the EFCC to establish a law that will empower it to detain such persons for up to a year.

He urged the anti-graft agency to go after federal bureaucrats and directors of government agencies, saying most of them were billionaires.

“We want a situation whereby you will get the cooperation of judges. I see no reason why somebody will take (steal) billions and after two days with the EFCC, they will be granted bail,” Misau said.

“If we need another law that once it has to do with government money, we can keep such person with EFCC for one year; if there are certain laws you want, where you can detain somebody for one year, we are ready.

“Go and check the houses in Maitama, Wuse 2 and Asokoro. How did they (the owners) get the money? Check the directors, who are still serving; they are all billionaires. I can mention more than 30 directors; they are still serving and they are billionaires.”


Source: The Cable

Ebun Adegboruwa Withdraws Case Filed Against Magu’s Confirmation.

Legal Practitioner, Mr Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa has withdrawn the court case he filed against the confirmation of Mr Ibrahim Magu, as the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

At the Federal High Court Sitting in Lagos on Monday, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mr Tayo Oyetibo, who appeared for Mr Adegboruwa, told the presiding Justice Mojisola Olatoregun that he had persuaded his client to drop the case, in order to encourage Mr Magu in the anti-corruption campaign.

He also said there is need to give Mr Magu the opportunity to continue the anti-corruption campaign of the present administration and the case may affect Magu’s confirmation as such, it was better to discontinue it.

Mr Adegboruwa who was present in court also got up to confirm this.

He told the court that he was well persuaded by his counsel and in his second coming, Mr Magu will do a good job, to be more rule of law friendly and be holistic in his approach to the anti-corruption drive of the administration.

Mr Wahab Shittu who represented Mr Magu said he was happy with the development and was not opposed to the withdrawal of the case.

He also expressed the belief that the withdrawal would boost the anti-corruption war of the Buhari-led administration, especially with input and support of lawyers and activists like Mr Adegboruwa, who should bring their wealth of experience to bear on the fight against corruption.

After listening to all the parties, Justice Olatoregun consequently struck out the case.

In the case, Mr Adegboruwa, had sought to stop the Senate from proceeding with the confirmation of Magu as the EFCC chairman, based upon his alleged corrupt practices and lavish lifestyle.


Source: Channels TV

“It is my money”, Ex-NNPC GMD asks court to return $9.7m, £74,000 seized from him

Andrew Yakubu, a former managing director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), has asked the court to return the $9.7 million and £74,000? seized from him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Yakubu has instituted a suit at the federal high court, Kano, to this effect.

He has requested that the court set aside the order of forfeiture granted to the federal government last week.

He said the court which granted the order had no such jurisdiction.

Ahmed Raji (SAN), filed the suit on behalf of Yakubu, Vanguard reports.

Raji argued that the crime was committed in Abuja, which is outside the territorial jurisdiction of the court in Kano.

“No aspect of the perceived offence in respect of which the Order of 13th February, 2017 was made, was committed within the Kano judicial division of this Honourable Court.

“By Section 28 of the EFCC Act, only the commission, i.e. the EFCC has the vires to seek an Order for the interim forfeiture of property under the Act.

“The power of this Honourable Court to make interim forfeiture Order(s) pursuant to Sections 28 & 29 of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Act, 2004 (hereinafter “EFCC Act”) is applicable ONLY to alleged offences charged under the EFCC Act and not to offences cognizable under any other law.

“The ex-parte Order of this Honourable Court dated 13th February, 2017, was made in respect of alleged offences under the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission Act (hereinafter “ICPC Act”) and not the EFCC Act as prescribed by Section 28 and 29 thereof.

“The conditions precedent to the grant of an interim forfeiture Order under Sections 28 & 29 of the EFCC Act were not complied with by the Applicant before the Order was made.

“In the instant case, no charge was brought against the Respondent/Applicant before the provisions of Section 28 and 29 of the EFCC Act were activated to grant the ex-parte Order of 13th February, 2017.”

According to the EFCC, Yakubu claims that the sums of money found in his house were gifts.

EFCC Arraigns ‘Yahoo Boy’ In Ondo State.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Thursday, February 16, 2017, arraigned one Adetoro Fisayo Femi (a.k.a Bawa Mohammed Sanni) before Justice F. A. Odubanjo of the Federal High Court of Ondo State sitting in Akure, on a 6-count charge bordering on obtaining money by false pretence, conspiracy, forgery, uttering of forged documents, retaining the proceed of crime and money laundering.

Adetoro however, pleaded not guilty to the charges preferred against him. In view of his plea, prosecution counsel, Oluwatoyin Owodunni prayed the court for a trial date and for the remand of the defendant in prison custody. However, counsel to the defendant, A.O. Oyibanji informed the court of a pending application for bail served on the prosecution today.

Justice Odubanjo adjourned the case till February 22, 2017 for hearing of bail application and April 12, 2017 for trial while the defendant is to be remanded in prison custody pending the determination of the application for bail.

One of the charge reads:

“That you, Adetoro Fisayo Femi (a.k.a Bawa Mohammed Sanni) and Olawale Ayeni (at large) on or about the 29th day of July, 2016 at Akure within the Akure Judicial Division of this honourable court did transfer and remove from your Wema Bank account to the bank account of one Ibironke Adebayo the sum of Four Hundred and Sixty Nine Thousand Four Hundred Naira (N469, 400) only, which money is part of the sum of Nine Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira (950,000) only you obtained from Straight Hold Global Services Limited and with the aim of concealing and retaining the proceeds of crime and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 17(1) (a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibuited) Act No 11, of 2011 (as Amended by the Money Laundering (Prohibion) Act, 2012) and punishable under section 17(1)(b) of the same Act”.

Adetoro’s journey to the dock followed a petition to the EFCC alleging that the defendant and his accomplice, Olawale who is now at large, used the internet for fraudulent activities with which they fleeced unsuspecting victims of their money. Adetoro and his accomplice conspired and forged fake drivers license titled “Nigeria National Drivers License NO.RBS691520AB” in the name of Bawa Mohammed Sanni but bearing Adetoro’s passport photograph purporting it to have been issued by the Federal Road Safety Commission.

The defendant thereafter altered the said forged document to one Ayodele Mary, a staff of one of the new generation banks (name withheld) with the intent that it may be acted upon as genuine in facilitating his operations and maintaining an account with the said bank.

He further laundered N496,400.00 using one Ibironke Adebayo account and subsequently purchased a second hand engine for Amanda Jeep with the help of Olawale.

“No law forbids anyone from keeping money at home”, Group defends ex-NNPC GMD.

The Southern Kaduna Coalition of Professionals (SKCOP) has faulted the detention of Andrew Yakubu, a former group managing director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) detained Yakubu after allegedly recovering huge sums of money at his house in the Sabo Tasha area of Kaduna state.

Yakubu admitted ownership of the money, but claimed that they were gifts from unnamed persons.

In a statement on Thursday, Sagamu Jaspar, general secretary of SKCOP, wondered if there was a law which forbade anyone from keeping his earnings at home.

He alleged that some persons were plotting to pull down “our illustrious son and sacrifice him to the dogs” as a means of weakening the strong among us ahead 2019 general election.

“We are waiting to see if a court of law can establish that the said amount found in his home is a proceed of crime, or whether there is indeed a law that forbids anyone from keeping his earnings at home,” Jaspar said.

“We suspect that the deliberate negative publicity the EFCC is generating over his arrest and its failure to release him from their detention  after meeting his bail conditions, is more vindictive and political than fighting corruption.

“We condemn the desperate attempts to rubbish Andy Yakubu, (the Iyan of Atyap Chiefdom) by those who think that a man from southern Kaduna has no business becoming the GMD of NNPC started right when he was in office.”

The group said some people were out to tarnish the reputation of the “only man from the middle belt” to have led the oil firm.

It added that in 2014 when Sanusi Lamido, former governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) raised the allegation of missing $20 billion, the agency which audited the corporation which was led by Yakubu at the time, gave NNPC a clean bill of health.

“In 2014, the then CBN governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, raised a bogus alarm that under the watch of Andy Yakubu, $48.9 billion had gone missing at the NNPC. When pressed further, he said it was actually $20 billion. The senate took the matter very serious and instituted its own probe into the clearly silly allegation,” the group said.

“An audit firm of global repute, PriceWaterHouseCoopers was brought in by the federal government. After a forensic investigation, the firm said no such monies were ever missing.

“Still bent on disgracing the only person from the middle belt to ever occupy that position after rising from the ranks, Andy Yakubu was in UK  in June last year, when the EFCC invited him.  With his conscience clean and clear he arrived Nigeria just for the EFCC to clamp him in detention over an alleged criminality in an NNPC subsidiary, NPDC after Yakubu has left office.

Demanding his immediate release, Jaspar challenged the EFCC to parade all those whom the agency recovered money from.

He said failure to do so would confirm the allegation that the commission is “persecuting” the suspect.

“Keeping him in detention for almost two weeks despite the above  is a means of psychologically tormenting him and for the public to prolong their odium on his person, without giving him a chance to state his own side of the story,” he said.

“If Andy Yakubu is not being persecuted because he comes from Southern Kaduna and the Middle Belt, we challenge the EFCC to also parade all the people it claims to have recovered humongous sums of money from. Failure to so would mean the agency is lying, or has two sets of law for two kinds of Nigerians.”

EFCC arraigns contractor over alleged $1m fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Thursday arraigned one Bashir Ishaq Bashir before S E Aladetoyinbo, justice of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) high court, Maitama, on a three-count charge of obtaining by false pretence and cheating to the tune of $1m.

According to a statement issued by Wilson Uwujaren, EFCC spokesman, Bashir allegedly collected the said sum as part payment of a $3m agreement from Althani Investments Company Limited for the purpose of forming a consortium to bid for shares at the Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company.

The bidding failed and several attempts made by the company for a refund of the money proved abortive.

He pleaded “not guilty” to the charges when they were read to him.

Rimamsomte Ezekiel, the prosecution counsel, thereafter asked for a trial date.

Responding, AB Anachebe (SAN), counsel to the defendant,  moved the motion for his bail application.

But Ezekiel opposed the application, arguing that “the defendant if granted bail will interfere with prosecution witnesses”.

He argued that the application was not proper in the sense that the defence only mentioned the name of the first defendant without reference to the second, third and fourth defendants.

Aladetoyinbo, while adjourning to April 10, 2017 for hearing granted him bail in the sum of N2m and one surety in like some. The surety must be resident in Abuja and must have landed property.

Ozekhome asks court to lift restriction on his account

Mike Ozekhome, a Lagos-based lawyer, has asked a federal high court in Lagos to vacate an interim order freezing his account.

On February 7, Abdulazeez Anka, a judge, gave a temporary forfeiture of N75 million found in Ozekhome’s Guarantee Trust Bank (GTB) account.

The order followed an application by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), which prayed the court to freeze the account temporarily, on the ground that the money was suspected to be proceeds of crime.

In his application, Ozekhome is seeking an order, discharging forthwith, the interim order made ex-parte, which ordered a temporary attachment of the money for 120 days.

He sought an order restraining the EFCC, “whether by themselves or their privies”, from dealing in any way and manner as to the operation or the proprietary rights of the ownership of the account.

Ozekhome said the application for an order of interim forfeiture of his account was done in bad faith. He accused the EFCC of failing to comply with statutory and judicial authorities in obtaining an interim order through a motion ex parte.

According to him, the respondent allegedly suppressed material facts in obtaining the order, as a result of which he held that the action is unconstitutional as same offends dections 36, 37 and 41 of the 1999 constitution.

He said the applicant’s family, staff, dependants, associates, business and livelihood will greatly suffer, if this application is not granted, and the freezing order lifted immediately.

Ozekhome also filed an affidavit of urgency deposed to by a lawyer in his firm, Chimaobi Onuigbo, praying that that the case be heard urgently.

The motion to set aside the freezing order will be heard on February 23.

Amnesty International Declares Interest In Death Of Desmond Nunugwo

Amnesty International Nigeria, has declared interest in the alleged murder of one Desmond Nunugwo while in the custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), in June 9, 2016.

The organisation has insisted that the matter would not be swept under the carpet, after the family of the deceased had gone to them and demanded justice.

Mr Nunugwo, who was a Chief of Protocol Officer to the Minister of State for Defence, died in EFCC custody hours after he was picked up for questioning for alleged fraud.

Crude Oil Theft: Navy-EFCC-NNPC And The Web Of Sordid Details – By Ifeanyi Izeze

In his 2017 budget defense at the House of Representatives, the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas, while presenting the operational scorecard for his service for 2016 disclosed that the Nigerian Navy confiscated crude oil and diesel worth about N420 billion from oil thieves and illegal refinery operators. According to him, the “specific quantity of crude oil and diesel stood at 810,725 and 1,078 metric tons, respectively.”

Using the OPEC conversion factor for Nigerian crude oil, one metric ton has about 7.420 barrels of crude oil while one metric ton of diesel would give 7.22 barrels. So the declared volume of crude oil seized by the Nigerian Navy in 2016 is about 6,015,579.5 barrels. Also for the diesel, one metric ton is approximately 1130 liters. So 1,078 metric tons would be about 1.23 million liters.

Now, as said by the Chief of Naval Staff, the combined proceeds from the sale of the seized crude oil and diesel are about N420 billion. This is just for 2016 alone where we are meant to believe that this administration through its security apparatuses has drastically curtailed the magnitude of the menace. So from 2015 backward, we will be talking of multiples of 6 N420 billion generated from the sale of recovered stolen oil from Nigeria.

Without a doubt, this disclosure is throwing up again very serious issues of accounting for the proceeds from sales of crude and products recovered from oil thieves and pipeline vandals. There is an obvious aberration in the transactions involving the warehousing and selling of recovered stocks.

First, who actually owns these recovered crude oil? This question is pertinent because most of the stolen crude were supposedly tapped from oil facilities, particularly trunk lines belonging to either a foreign international oil companies or a Nigerian indigenous operator or both. So when these crude oils are recovered, whose produced crude account does it go to?  Does it now belong to the government/NNPC or the Navy, or the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)? Are serious efforts actually made to ascribed whatever recovered volumes to the rightful owner – the producer(s)?

Secondly, when the Navy seizes stolen crude oil from oil thieves and pipeline vandals, where does the recovered stock go – to the Navy, NNPC, or EFCC?  Who are the buyers of these seized or rather recovered crude oil – the traditional government certified crude oil marketers, another group of contractors, or the same criminal cartels that also buy from oil thieves that escape the Navy?

If the mind-blowing figures of volumes of crude oil recovered by the Navy have been going to the NNPC, how has it been accounted for – as NNPC productions and from what well/field? These issues need to be explained because severally we have heard of conflicts of interests between the Navy, NNPC and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on whose responsibility it is to sell off recovered stolen crude oil.

It would be recalled that at the wake of the Salt Pond crude oil theft scandal, the company involved disclosed that it purchased crude oil legally from the Nigerian government’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the authority with primary responsibility for cracking down on financial crimes, as oil theft is classified as one. As said then in a statement issued in Ghana by the chief executive officer of the accused company, Fenix Impex, his company has been one of the official EFCC contractors that help the commission to dispose of (i.e., sell) crude oil consignments seized by the Nigerian military and law enforcement agencies from oil thieves and illegal bunkerers. His words: “The only crude we take from Nigeria…has been seized by the government. We have invoices that we pay to EFCC Nigeria.”

Does the EFCC have offshore or coastal receptor facilities (tank farms/floating storage facilities) where they warehouse recovered crude oil received from the Naval authorities? If yes, where are these facilities located in the entire stretch of the Nigerian coastline?

And if the Navy and the EFCC have no facility to store recovered stolen crude oil from Nigeria, how are the buyers (now the EFCC or Navy or even NNPC contractors) picking up the stock for disposal abroad – onboard naval ships, seized barges/ships/boats/drums in the custody of the Navy? Who ascertains the correct volumes and price before the contractors pick the consignments? We also need to know the actual volumes and dates of the consignment(s) lifted by the contractor(s) on behalf of the federal government (in this instance the EFCC).

Above all, how much has the EFCC, Navy or NNPC generated from the sale of crude oil recovered from oil thieves since this transaction started some years ago? The figure the Chief of Naval Staff dangled at the National Assembly, was it proceeds from sales by the Navy or the EFCC? The monies generated over time from these transactions, where were they lodged? Is the revenue with the anti-graft commission or handed over to the NNPC or transmitted directly to the Single Treasury Account (TSA)? Do we have records of these sales with the Revenue Mobilisation and Fiscal Commission (RMFC) or even the Federation Account?

The federal government seriously needs to address these issues in its efforts to convince Nigerians and even the international community that this administration is sincere in its fight against corruption in the country, especially as it affects the mismanagement of oil proceeds. We need more a serious and detailed explanation of the involvement, if at all, of the Navy, EFCC or NNPC in the serial sale of confiscated crude recovered from oil thieves in Nigeria. It is not enough to tell us that millions of metric tons of crude oil were intercepted and captured by the Navy and then we end the story there. The illegal bunkering economy bleeding Nigeria as ascertained by various respectable international financial and security agencies is estimated to have an average annual value of about $17 billion. So we need accountability and transparency organizations, particularly the Nigerian Extractive Industry Transparency Initiatives (NEITI), to actually live up to their mandates and do the needful. God bless Nigeria!!


Ifeanyi Izeze writes from Abuja. He can be reached at iizeze@yahoo.com

Recovered N3 billion: Angry neighbours mock ex-NNPC boss Andrew Yakubu

Residents of Zaria Road, Sabon Tasha, a poor suburb of Kaduna, have no sympathy for their neighbour from whose house the staggering sum of $9.7million and 74,000 pounds was recovered last week.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, last Friday announced it recovered the money (about N3 billion in total) from a house in Sabon Tasha belonging to a former Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Andrew Yakubu.

Mr. Yakubu, who reportedly admitted owning the money, has since been arrested and is in custody of the EFCC.

The Federal High Court in Kano presided over by Justice Zainab Abubakar on Tuesday gave an interim order for the forfeiture of the money to the Nigerian government.

When a PREMIUM TIMES reporter visited the area on Tuesday, the residents generally expressed shock and outrage over the discovery in their neglected community.

Many of the interviewees spoke in a mixture of English and pidgin.

Grace John, a private school teacher, first directed her anger at petty criminals she said daily terrorise ordinary residents of the area instead of going after the likes of the former NNPC boss.

“There is a street nicknamed ‘Black Street’ in this community. There is no kind of crime that does not happen there. Why is it that they didn’t discover that house where this money was hidden?” Ms. John said.

“They should have gone there instead of breaking into the homes of innocent people who struggle everyday to survive the harsh economy caused by people like Andrew Yakubu”.

She could not restrain her disgust for the embattled former boss of the state oil firm.

“The man is wicked. I pray that nemesis will continue to catch up with his likes,” she said, snapping her fingers.

Blessing Luka, a fruit hawker, pointed morosely at the irony of the discovery in a neighbourhood she said is without water, good road and hospital, and has a large number of unemployed and vulnerable youth.

“Yet, the money that would have been used to solve these problems and many other social and economic problems were stolen by one corrupt person and hidden under our nose”, she fumed.

Ms. Blessing, a widowed mother of five, said she knew Mr. Yakubu and had made several attempts to get him to support her trade.

“His boys will tell me come today, come tomorrow. Asheh plenti dollar dey for the house. Na wah ooo, rich people wicked oo!

“Wetin pain me be say this man for give me N10,000 to use am sell orange take feed my children and pay for their school fees and house rent before government collect everything!”

Florence Udogu said she felt bad when she heard the news of the discovery. She said even though it was a stolen money, it should have been invested in establishing an industry.

“He even has the dirty mouth to say it is a gift or a donation. Who is he fooling? He brought all these stolen money and hid it within our reach and left us in poverty and illness. But our God is alive and will continue to expose these corrupt politicians and government officials,” she said indignantly.

“We hear say the man dey save the money to contest Governor of Kaduna State, when even we wey dey stay near him house dey hungry. God catch am. Na for that prison him go die put” Jacob Dominic, a commercial tricycle operator who took our reporter round the slump, said.

“Na so bad name go dey follow him family. Ole! That is why dem wan kill Baba make him no catch them go prison.”

Andrew Abdul, a private legal practitioner who resides in the area, said he was shocked at the the level of corruption in the society, even as he awarded a pass mark to the EFCC as a corruption fighting agency.

He said all stolen money recovered should be invested in the economy and infrastructural development, especially in communities such as where Mr. Yakubu’s loot was discovered.

“The discovery of such huge amount of money hidden in an unexpected location has further exposed the level of selfishness, self-centredness, indifference and greed of some Nigerians”, the lawyer stated.

“Whatever is the source of the money or reason for saving the money is questionable. As a public officer, any money collected as gift should be declared publicly at the point of collecting it,” he said.

He advised the National Assembly to enact a law setting a ceiling on amount a public office holder or an individual could keep in their accounts without investing it into an economic venture.

“If somebody has that kind of looted money or even if it is a gift as Mr. Yakubu claimed, why can’t he help the poor community where he stashed the money?”, said Idibia Gabriel, a journalist who resides in the area.

“Some people said that if they had known about the hidden loot, they would have struggled to get something for themselves before the long arm of the law caught up with the former GMD”, he said, chuckling.

“Some said if they were Mr. Yakubu, they would have invested the money for people to benefit rather than keeping it,” he said.

Activist wants court to bar Saraki, Oduah from screening Magu as EFCC chairman

Raji Oyewumi, an activist, has asked a Federal High Court in Abuja to disqualify Senate President Bukola Saraki, and 10 other senators from participating in the screening and confirmation of Ibrahim Magu as the substantive chairman of EFCC.

Mr. Oyewumi, an anti-corruption crusader, in a suit filed in the court on Tuesday, alleged that Mr. Saraki and other senators joined in the suit would be biased if allowed to screen Magu.

Joined in the suit dated February 13, are senators Godswill Akpabio, Jonah Jang, Aliyu Wammako, Stella Oduah, Theodore Orji and Rabiu Kwankwaso.

?Also joined in the suit are senators Ahmed Sani, Danjuma Goje, Joshua Dariye and Abdullahi Adamu.

Others are the Clerk of the National Assembly, the Senate, the Attorney-General of the Federation and Mr. Magu.

According to Mr. Oyewumi, the senators cannot be fair in the screening and confirmation of Magu, since all of them have pending cases before the EFCC?.

?According to him, Mr. Saraki and others are threatened by the leadership of Mr. Magu as EFCC chairman.

He asked the court to determine whether the senate president and other senators would not violate the provisions of Section 56, 172 of paragraph? 1 and 9 of the fifth schedule to the 1999 constitution if they participate in screening Magu.

He prayed the court for an injunction restraining the senate president from presiding over or participating in the screening, deliberation and voting on the nomination of Magu as EFCC chairman.

In the affidavit in support of the ?originating summons, the activist said that the senate president exhibited bias against the confirmation of Magu.

He said the bias was shown when he failed or refused to read the President’s letter on the floor of the Senate until three weeks after.

No date has been fixed for the hearing of the matter?.


Source: NAN

Court orders forfeiture of $9.8m, £74, 000 ‘recovered’ from ex-NNPC GMD.

Zainab Abubakar, a justice of the federal high court, Kano, has ordered the forfeiture of the sums of $9.8m and £74,000 allegedly recovered from Andrew Yakubu, former group managing director (GMD), of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

According to a statement issued by Wilson Uwujaren, spokesman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the order was sequel to an ex parte application the agency filed seeking an interim forfeiture of the monies to the government.

In her ruling,  Zainab held that “the sum of $9,772,000 and £74,000 which are now in the custody of the applicant (EFCC) are in the interim forfeited to the federal government of Nigeria”.

Last Friday, the anti-graft agency said its operatives raided a building belonging to the former NNPC boss and recovered stacks of dollars and pound sterling stashed away in a fire-proof safe.

Yakubu had earlier reported to the commission’s Kano zonal office where he allegedly admitted being the owner of both the house and the recovered monies.

He is still in the custody of the EFCC.

Ex-NNPC GMD, Yakubu claimed $9.8m, £74, 000 found in his house were gifts – EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Friday said Andrew Yakubu, former group managing director (GMD) of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), claimed that the sums of  $9.8m and £74, 000 found in his house were gifts.

Wilson Uwujaren, EFCC spokesman, who disclosed this in a statement, said the money was found in a hidden fire-proof safe.

“A special operation conducted by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on 3rd February, 2017 on a building belonging to a former group managing director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr Andrew Yakubu in Kaduna yielded the recovery of a staggering sum of $9,772,800  and another sum of £74,000 cash,” he said.

“The huge cash was hidden in a fire proof safe.”

Uwujaren said the raid of the facility was sequel to an intelligence which the anti-graft agency received “about suspected proceeds of crime believed to be hidden in the slums of Sabon Tasha area of Kaduna”.

“On arrival at the facility, the caretaker of the house, one Bitrus Yakubu, a younger brother to Andrew Yakubu, disclosed that both the house and the safe where the money was found belong to his brother, Andrew Yakubu,” he explained.

“When the safe was opened it was discovered that it contained the sum of $9,772,800 (Nine Million, Seven Hundred and Seventy Two Thousand, Eight Hundred United States Dollars) and another sum of £74,000 (Seventy Four Thousand Pound Sterling).

“On February 8, 2017, Andrew Yakubu reported to the commission’s Zonal office in Kano and made statement wherein he admitted ownership of the recovered money, claiming it was gift from unnamed persons. He is currently assisting the investigation.”

Yakubu was appointed NNPC GMD in 2012, and he was replaced by Joseph Dawha in 2014.

EFCC raids home of former NNPC GMD, Andrew Yakubu, recovers $9.2m

Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Thursday raided the home of former General Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Andrew Yakubu, in Kaduna city.

The EFCC agents allegedly recovered $9.2million from Yakubu’s safe and an additional £72,000.

The anti-graft agency said that it was the largest amount they had recovered in recent weeks.

Yakubu was arraigned in June 2016 on allegations of money laundering.

He served as GMD of NNPC between 2012 and 2014, during the Goodluck Jonathan regime.

He was sacked by the then Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, who reportedly accused him of insubordination.




EFCC raids home of former NNPC GMD, Andrew Yakubu, recovers $9.2m

EFCC uncovers billions in cash from home of ex-NNPC GMD

The Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Thursday told a committee of the House of Representatives that $9.2 million and 750,000 pounds were recovered from a residence in Kaduna state.

Although he did not indicate precisely when the raid by EFCC operatives was carried out, NAN learnt that the foreign money was recovered from the home of Andrew Yakubu, a former Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.

The huge cash, which is in excess of N3 billion by official exchange rate, was the largest ever recovered by the agency in recent weeks.

Mr. Magu also disclosed to the House of Representatives Committee on Financial Crimes that N1.25 billion was recovered from a public servant, all in the last two weeks.

Mr. Yakubu, who served as GMD between 2012 and 2014, is already facing trial for money laundering.

He was charged by the EFCC in June 2016.

Mr. Magu was at the House of Representatives to present the Commission’s 2016 budget performance and defend its 2017 budget.

He said the commission recovered N102.91 billion, 8.30 million dollars, GBP 29,155, 12,475 pounds, 117,004 Canadian dollars as proceeds of crime between January and December, 2016.

Other monies recovered during the period, he said, were 806.50 Dirham, 5,000 Francs and 2,000 Rupees.

“Out of the 37 accounts frozen/forfeited, six banks are yet to provide relevant information on the amount accrued into the suspected accounts within the period under review,’’ he said.

The document revealed that the commission secured 135 convictions, out of which 46 were from Lagos zone, 30 from Abuja zone, 22 from Port Harcourt zone, 19 from Kano zone, 15 from Enugu zone and three from Gombe zone during the period.

Mr. Magu acknowledged the support of the committee towards fast-tracking the completion of EFCC headquarters in Abuja.

He disclosed that the Federal Ministry of Finance had listed the payment of N1.8 billion out of N2.9 billion meant for completion of the headquarters.

He, however, added that the commission had resuscitated its offices in Kaduna, Ibadan, Benin and Maiduguri as part of efforts to boost its operations across the country.

Mr. Magu urged the legislature to support the fight against graft, saying “corruption is fighting back”.

On recruitment, he said the commission only recruited 331 cadets on equal quota basis across the country except Lagos, Ekiti, Bayelsa and Rivers with lower numbers.

In a breakdown of the 2016 budget of the commission, Mr. Magu told the committee that total budgetary approval was N18.89 billion, but that N14.74 billion, representing 78.04 per cent, was released.

He explained that N7.62 billion was for personnel cost, overhead was N2.75 billion while capital expenditure was N8.49 billion for the year.

Mr. Magu added that 91.1 per cent component of the released funds had so far been utilised.

Earlier, the Chairman of the committee, Kayode Oladele, said Nigeria had applied to join the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an international anti-corruption agency.

He said the move was part of efforts to strengthen ongoing anti-corruption crusade in the country.

Mr. Oladele, who lauded the development, expressed optimism that Nigeria would be admitted as “Observer Member’’ by the end of the year and would become full-time member in the nearest future.


Source: Premium Times

EFCC Recovers N1.25 Billion from Public servant

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has recovered N1.25 billion from a public servant, it was learnt yesterday.

Although it did not give further details on the recovery, the EFCC gave a breakdown of other recoveries it made last year in a document submitted to the National Assembly.

Acting EFCC Chairman Ibrahim Magu yesterday appeared before the House of Representatives Committee on Financial Crimes for the 2016 budget’s appraisal and the 2017 budget defence.

He said the anti-graft agency recovered N102,913,791,217.54; $8,296,313.99; GBP 29,155; £12,475; 117,004 Canadian Dollar; 806.50 DIRHAM; 5,000 FRANCS and 2,000 RUPEE as proceeds of crime between January and December 2016.

He also confirmed the recovery of $9.750 million and £750,000 from a residence in Kaduna recently, adding that N1.25 billion was recovered from a public servant, a fortnight ago.

According to a document submitted by the Commission to the committee, out of the 37 accounts frozen/forfeited, six banks are yet to provide relevant information on the amount accrued into the suspected accounts within the period under review.

The commission secured 135 convictions last year, according to the records, out of which 46 were from Lagos zone, 30 from Abuja zone, 22 from Port Harcourt zone, 19 from Kano zone, 15 from Enugu zone and three from Gombe zone.

The anti- graft agency boss asked for the committee’s support saying “corruption is fighting back.” He said in a bid to enhance the efficiency of the agency, offices in Kaduna, Ibadan, Edo and Maiduguri were resuscitated.

He said the payment of N1.8 billion out of N2.9 billion for completion of the commission’s headquarters office in Abuja had been scheduled by the Federal Ministry of Finance.

The Commission’s recruitment, he said, resulted in the recruitment of 199 Detective Inspectors and 331 Detective Assistants in an equal number across the country except Lagos, Ekiti, Bayelsa and Rivers with lower number.

The Commission prayed the House for an increase in Personnel Cost from N7. 127 billion to N9.692 billion to accommodate the 1 ,500 new recruits whose estimated emoluments is N2.565 billion.

He also asked for an increase in capital allocation by N1.790 billion to accommodate additional cost of work on the New Head Office of the Commission among other requests.

Chairman of the Committee, Hon. Kayode Oladele, lauded the achievements of the anti-graft agency in its fight against corruption.

He said: “For the first time in Nigeria’s history, anti- corruption searchlights have been beamed on the judiciary and the revelations have been mind- boggling. In addition, similar exercises in the arms procurement process by the Nigeria military have also led to several arrests.

“Overall, the EFCC has made the highest numbers of recoveries of stolen resources ( running into billions of Naira) in a single year in the annals of Nigeria’s anti- corruption efforts.”

He said Nigeria had applied to join the league of members of Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an international anti-corruption agency, in a bid to strengthen ongoing anti-corruption crusade in the country.

“Our collective efforts to unleash sustainable development in Nigeria through the rooting out of corruption will not produce the desired result if Nigeria is unable to transact in the international market place without let or hindrance.

“In this regard, Nigeria has applied to join the FATF and based on the level of our commitment, a high-level delegation from the FATF is due to visit Nigeria in March 2017 to meet with various stakeholders and report back to its plenary in June this year. I have no doubt in my mind that we will be successfully accredited and admitted at the end of the exercise,” the committee chair said.


Source: www.nigerianeye.com

Ex-Minister, senior Nigerian lawyer docked for alleged N450 million laundering.

A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mohammed Belgore, and a former Minister of National Planning, Abubakar Suleiman, were on Wednesday in Lagos granted bail on own recognisance after entering a plea of `not guilty’.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, charged the duo before a Federal High Court, Lagos, for alleged five-count offences bordering on money laundering to the tune of N450 million.

Justice Aikawa, who gave the ruling, said since the prosecution did not oppose the bail application and considering the accused’s standing in the society, “they will not likely jump bail.”

He, however, ordered that their international passports should be deposited with the court’s Deputy Chief Registrar and only to be released on the court’s order.

The EFCC accused them of conspiring to directly take possession of N450 million which they “reasonably ought to have known formed part of the proceeds of an unlawful act.”

The commission said both the minister and the lawyer committed the offences on March 27, 2015.

Apart from taking possession of N450 million, the accused were said to have conspired to make cash payment of the sum to one Sheriff Shagaya without going through a financial institution.

The offences, according to the EFCC, contravened the provisions of Section 15, 15(3), 16, 16(2) 18(a) and 18 (d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act, 2012.

The accused pleaded not guilty to all the counts.

The counsel to the first accused (Mr. Belgore), Ebun Shofunde, urged the court to grant him bail on own-recognisance.

“Given his antecedents, I am asking that the bail should be on self-recognizance because he has always made himself available while on administrative bail.

“He has been a Senior Advocate of Nigeria since 2001; he is not a threat and he is not likely to jump bail given his standing. He has also been a lawyer since 1985.”

Also, counsel to the second accused (Mr. Suleiman), Bolaji Ayorinde, wanted the court to grant the former minister bail on own-recognisance.

He said:“He is a renowned educationist, a professor of political science and international relations at the University of Abuja.

“He has served this country as a minister in 2014. He has been involved in teaching and research for the past 30 years; he has graduated more than 10,000 students for the past 30 years.

“He voluntarily submitted himself to EFCC and never contravened the terms of his administrative bail. I urge your lordship to grant him bail on self-recognition,” he said.

Counsel to the EFCC, Rotimi Oyedepo, however, did not oppose the bail applications.

“We leave bail at your lordship’s discretion and pray that your lordship should impose conditions that will compel their attendance for trial.”

The case has been adjourned to February 23 for trial.


Source: NAN

BREAKING: EFCC pick up ex-Katsina governor Shema at court premises

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has whisked former Katsina governor Ibrahim Shema, Daily Trust reports.


According to the newspaper, Shema was picked up at the main exit of the court premises on Tuesday.


Operatives of the anti-graft agency barricaded the exit as Shema was about leaving the court premises.


The ex-governor was asked to alight from his car and instructed to join an EFCC vehicle which led to stand off for about an hour.


The EFCC operatives later entered Shema’s car as they drove along on their convoy.


At the last court sitting, the commission had complained about Shema refusing to fulfilling one of his bail conditions, by making himself available when needed.


However, Shema’s spokeman Olawale Jumoke said “Shema was not arrested”.


Source: YNaija

Alleged Fraud: EFCC Re-arraigns Atewe, Others.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has re-arraigned Major General Emmanuel Atewe (rtd), a former Commander of the Military Joint Task Force, (Operation Pulo Shield), in the Niger Delta, for an alleged fraud totaling about 8.5 billion Naira.


It is the third time Major Atewe is being re-arraigned by the EFFC and the tria, took place at the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Friday, before Justice Ayokunle Faji.


He was re-arraigned on a 22 count charge alongside a former Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Patrick Akpobolokemi, and two others, Kime Engonzu and Josephine Otuaga.


Their re-arraignment before Justice Faji, followed the transfer of the previous judge, Justice Saliu Saidu from the Lagos division of the court to the Port Harcourt division.


Justice Faji has adjourned till February 13 and 17, 2017 for trial to start afresh.


Source: Channels TV

OPINION: We Can’t Afford To Be Pawns – By Muhammed Karamba

Recently, there has been an uproar with regards to President Buhari’s decision to keep EFCC boss Ibrahim Magu and SGF Babachir Lawal. The President is under pressure from the public and the National Assembly to replace the two. I find it interesting how we have become so invested in such an issue that should probably be at the bottom of our list. Are we playing somebody’s game? I doubt if it is far from the truth.

It’s quite funny how, all of a sudden, the legislature decides who amongst the executive is corrupt or not. This is an arm of the government who hasn’t answered a lot of crucial questions being asked by Nigerians. It has failed to keep up to its promise of an open NASS. It has suspended a member turned whistle-blower and are yet to give comprehensive answers as per his allegations. I am not saying this disqualifies them from their officials. But it begs the question, are these probes done in the interest of Nigerians?

The media of today is doing a wonderful job at keeping us updated and exposing stuffs we probably otherwise wouldn’t have known. Most of us have one or a couple of media outlets which we trust hundred percent and will always believe anything that comes from them. But how sincere is the media of today? There are bad eggs; a lot of them. Now, all it takes to have a media outlet is money.

Have we ever sat down to think that maybe one of this media is there to defend the interest of a particular entity or group? It might even be as simple as a social media account. Politicians have social media “warriors” (one of whom is might be an account you trust so much) who get paid to spread propaganda. We have become so gullible that a simple twitter account operated by a fellow citizen is what we depend on, to get “credible” info. It’s saddening.

Would we know these people better than Buhari? These are people he would probably deal with on a daily basis. The thing is, being the spectator, we might have this feeling that the president is just there seated while his cabinet devours our wealth without his knowledge. If that happens, then we would have the worst leadership. Yeah, they would try as much as possible to hide their corrupt practices from him. Do we thing it is that easy to dig up something the president hasn’t? But the thing is, the president has the tedious job of knowing when an allegation is in the interest of someone or in the interest of the state.

It is very good for citizens to feel disturbed when we “see” a corrupt top official. We know what we don’t want. But most at times, we don’t know what we want. These guys might be corrupt, but president Buhari knows what he enjoys about working with them. You don’t employ a plumber and tell him which tools to use. Who are we to say no when the president says he wants them? If that’s what it takes to fulfill his campaign promises, then so be it.

The bottom line is, there is a political battle going on and we do not want to be pawns. Regardless of who is in this government, or priorities should not change. What we demand is Transparency and accountability, security, fight against corruption, good stable economy, proper infrastructure and the list goes. That’s it.

Author: Muhammad Karamba

EFCC summons former OAU Vice Chancellor over alleged N3.5 billion fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has invited a former Vice-Chancellor of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Bamitale Omole, over allegations of fraud levelled against him by academic staff of the university.

PREMIUM TIMES had on April 20, 2016, reported that the budget monitoring committee of the local chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, accused the management of the university under Mr. Omole of mismanaging N3.5 billion intervention fund released to the university for upgrade of facilities.

The Union had accused the management of the institution under Mr. Omole of expending the sum on hostel renovation and construction of new lecture theatres without observing due process and transparency.

The funds were part of the N100 billion released by the Federal Government in 2013 to universities in response to agitations by ASUU for upgrade of facilities at the tertiary institutions in Nigeria.

An implementation monitoring committee had spelt out guidelines for accessing the intervention fund but the teachers’ union in OAU said the university failed to abide by the guidelines.

According to the report of the monitoring committee obtained by PREMIUM TIMES, the university’s management failed to follow due process in contract awards or follow guidelines in the use of the fund.

Although the management, through the university’s spokesman, Olanrewaju Abiodun, denied any wrong doing, a body known as Third Eye International OAU restated the allegations in a petition to the EFCC.

In the petition, the group had urged the agency to investigate “the illegal disbursement and embezzlement of funds”.

Apparently in response to the petition, the EFCC in a letter to the Acting Vice Chancellor, Anthony Elujoba, dated January 19, requested the release of Mr. Omole and the university’s bursar, Aderonke Akeredolu.

The commission asked the bursar to come along with Certified True Copies (CTC) of “all capital project contracts, including financial documents relevant to the renovation of official residence of the VC executed in the institution”.

“Other documents expected are financial document of funds remitted to OAU under the NEEDS ASSESSMENT of Nigeria Public Universities Special Presidential Intervention between 2013 and 2014 and all financial documents of Employer Contributory Pension Scheme of the Institution between 2012 and 2016.”

Students groups and the Non Academic Staff Union of Universities, NASU, of the university had also demanded that Mr. Omole be probed.

Mr. Omole’s invitation comes less than two months after the current acting vice chancellor, Mr. Elujoba was also questioned by the EFCC.

Court throws out EFCC’s appeal on Fayose’s bank account

The Federal High Court, Ado-Ekiti division, has dismissed an appeal filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, for a stay of the judgment delivered on December 13, 2016, ordering the agency to unfreeze the accounts of Governor Ayo Fayose.

The EFCC had on June 21, 2016 placed restrictions on two accounts of Mr. Fayose with Zenith Bank in connection with funds traced to former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dansuki.

Mr. Fayose challenged the action in court, insisting that the accounts had nothing to do with funds from the former NSA’s office.

The judge, Taiwo Taiwo, on December 13, 2016 had ruled against the EFCC on grounds that the EFCC’s actions contravened Section 308 of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution as amended.

Subsequently, the court ordered the agency to unfreeze the governor’s accounts “with immediate effect.”

Mr. Fayose later withdrew N5 million from the accounts on the strength of the judgment.
But the EFCC’s lead counsel, Rotimi Oyedepo, opposed the ruling, and filed a motion for stay of execution of judgment to among other reasons, allow the anti-graft agency preserve the funds in the accounts.

But Justice Taiwo, while dismissing the appeal on Monday, held that the appeal was made in bad faith.

“The ruling is functus officio, so the EFCC application was instituted in bad faith. Initially, there was a suppression of facts particularly in the way the plaintiff brought in judgment of other courts on the issue,” he said.

“If you examined critically, no proof of facts that appeal has been entered, and again, proceed of crime not a subject matter in the substantive suit, coupled with the fact that the matter was not instituted as a criminal suit.

“The court can’t go on voyage of discovery to fish for fact to grant equitable remedy when the respondent averred that he has defendants and ready to refund the money if found liable at trial after his tenure.

“The court can’t stay a judgment already executed and the whole exercise in freezing the governor’s accounts amounts is a breach of the provisions of Section 308, 1999 CFRN (amended),” he ruled.


Source: Premium Times

Court fixes March 1 to decide on ‘secret trial’ for Dasuki

Ahmed Mohammed, justice of the federal high court, Abuja,  is going to decide if witnesses in the trial of Sambo Dasuki, former national security adviser (NSA), will be shielded on March 1.


Dasuki is facing two-counts of illegal possession of firearms and money laundering brought against him by the Department of State Services (DSS).


Mohammed “inherited” the case from Adeniyi Ademola, who is facing charges of alleged corruption.


On Tuesday, Oladipo Okpeseyi, counsel to the federal government and prosecution, prayed the court to shield the identities of the witnesses that would testify in Dasuki’s trial for their safety.


The government had made the same request to Ademola when he was handling the trial, but the judge did not grant it.


Objecting to the request, Ahmed Raji, counsel to Dasuki, argued that there was no justification for his client to be tried in secret, reminding the court that the same application had earlier been dismissed by another court.


However, the hearing of the application could not continue because Okpeseyi asked the court to give him some time to respond to a counter-affidavit filed by Dasuki’s counsel.


The judge, thereafter, adjourned the matter to March 1.


Besides his case at the federal high court, Dasuki is facing multiple charges of money laundering brought against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).


Source: The Cable

“You must hate corruption”, Magu tells EFCC staff.

Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has described corruption as the mother of all crimes, telling the cadets who just joined the commission that they must hate it.

Maintaining that every evil is rooted in corruption, Magu admonished them to always shun acts capable of compromising their official duties.

He identified courage, discipline, commitment and loyalty as crucial to success in the crusade against corruption.

The anti-graft czar said this on Monday, while opening the second phase of the Detective Assistant course II programme at the EFCC Academy, Karu.

“We are passionately involved in fighting corruption, all of you must hate corruption and you should not be found to be involved in corrupt practices,” Wilson Uwujaren, spokesman of the commission, quoted Magu as saying.

He reminded them that EFCC the anti-graft agency has a high reputation in the world.

Magu described EFCC as an agency where anyone who has integrity and interest of the country at heart can serve

He warned those who joined the commission because they wanted to make money to “better leave now”.

“We have zero tolerance for internal corruption. We will figure you out, dismiss you and prosecute you,” he said.

Magu: Men more involved in corruption than women in Nigeria

Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has stirred a gender controversy about corruption.

Speaking when the executive committee of the National Council of Women Society (NCWS) paid him a courtesy visit in Abuja, Magu said corrupt tendencies are more pronounced among males than females.

“Looking at the number of people that have been apprehended by the commission, the men involved outnumber the women,” Magu said.

He said women were not pure or immune to greed, but were only less corrupt.

Magu described women as nation builders, saying their roles in ensuring the right societal values could never be over-emphasised.

The EFCC boss emphasised the need for collaboration between the commission and NCWS in the fight against corruption.

He explained that the commission had never undermined the rule of law in its anti-graft fight, adding that the EFCC, aside tackling economic crimes, was working hard to put an end to political corruption.

“We respect the independence of the judiciary and auditing bodies in our efforts to ensure that the corrupt are prosecuted, while stolen assets are returned,” he said.

Magu craved women’s support in the fight against corruption, and disclosed that the Lagos zone of the ‘Women Against Corruption’ would be launched on February 22, 2016, to enlist that support in the battle to rid Nigeria of the menace.

Amosu, Others Diverted N3b NIMASA Funds To Personal Business – Witness

Tosin Owobo, an operative of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Wednesday described to a Federal High Court in Lagos, Nigeria, how now-retired Air Marshal Adesola Amosu Nanayon and two other Air Force chiefs diverted the sum of N3 billion meant for the security of the country’s maritime environment into his personal oil and gas companies.

Led in evidence by EFCC prosecutor Rotimi Oyedepo, Owobo, who is an Assistant Detective Superintendent with the anti-graft agency, offered graphic details of how Nanayon, who was at the time Nigeria’s Chief of Air Staff (COAS), received the money from the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) under the leadership of Patrick Akpolobokemi.

Amosu is standing trial before the court over the fraud alongside Air Vice Marshal Jacob Bola Adigun, Air Commodore Gbadebo Owodunni Olugbenga, and eight fictitious companies.

The companies facing trial alongside the three Air Force chiefs are: Delfina Oil and Gas Ltd, Mcallan Oil And Gas Limited, Hebron Housing and Properties Company Limited, Trapezites BDC, Fonds and Pricey Ltd, Deegee Oil and Gas Limited, and Timsegg Investment Limited and Solomon Health Care.

At the resumed trial on Wednesday, Mr. Owobo informed the court that the anti-graft agency discovered in its investigation that there was a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Nigerian Air force (NAF) and NIMASA while Air Marshall Alex Badeh was the nation’s COAS, and that a sum of N1. 480 billion was paid by NIMASA to the NAF account in 2014 for securing the nation’s maritime environment.

He said the money was paid in two tranches of N1.480 million into an account with Skye Bank.

Owobo also told the court that on assumption of office by Air Marshal Amosu as the nation’s COAS, he continued with Badeh’s MOU, and made a proposal of N4 billion to NIMASA which he claimed was needed to manage Maritime Security, but stated that the former Director-General of NIMASA, Dr. Akpolobokemi, only released the sum of N3 billion, which was paid in three tranches of N1 billion each into the Special Emergency Operation of NAF .

The witness, who was the third in the criminal trial, further stated that upon investigating how the money was spent, he said it was discovered that the monies were diverted into the Air Force chief’s oil and gas companies.

Those firms were identified as: Right Option Oil and Gas Limited, Delfina Oil and Gas Limited, Mcallan Oil and Gas Limited, and Deegee Oil and Gas Limited.

An attempt by the witness to give details of the documents tendered as exhibits in the trial was however opposed by the lawyers representing the accused persons: Bolaji Ayorinde, Kemi Balogun and Norrison Quakers, leading 11 others.  They argued that the witness was not the maker of the document tendered, neither did he confirm the authentication of the documents from the maker, and that he cannot, therefore, cannot give evidence on the exhibits.

Mr.  Oyedepo, urging the court to discountenance the objection raised by the defence, affirmed that the witness is an Investigating Officer who investigated the alleged crime and can therefore give evidence on the documents tendered.

Prior to the commencement of the day’s proceedings, the presiding judge, Mohammed Idris, ruled against the reliefs sought by the defence, in which they urged the court to expunge earlier evidence given by the witness in the trial.

The matter was subsequently adjourned till tomorrow for ruling on whether Mr. Owobo can give evidence on the documents tendered, and for continuation of the trial of the suspects.

The suspects were first arraigned before the court on June 29 on 23 counts charge relating to fraud, money laundering and stealing.

The prosecution says the offences are contrary to sections 18(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act of 2012, and punishable under Section 15(3) of that law.


Source: Sahara Reporters

EFCC Re-Arraigns Ex-Air Force Chief Umar Over N9.7b Fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) re-arraigned former Chief of Air Staff Mohammed Dikko Umar on Wednesday before Justice Nnamdi Dimga at the Federal High Court in Maitama, Abuja on a 7-count charge of money laundering and procurement fraud amounting to N9.7 billion.

According to the EFCC, Mr. Umar, who served as Chief of Air Staff from September 2010 to October 2012, allegedly withdrew N700 million from the Nigeria Air Force (NAF) account to purchase a house at No. 14 Vistula Close, off Panama Street in Maitama, Abuja.

He also reportedly stole N500 million from the NAF account to buy a four-bedroom duplex at Road 3B Street 2 in Mabushi Ministers Hill, Abuja. Additionally, Mr. Umar allegedly took N250 million from the NAF’s coffers to buy a property at No. 14, Audu Bako Way, GRA, Kano State in 2011, the EFCC said.

The offenses violate Section 15(2)(b) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act of 2011.

The EFCC reports that one of the charges reads:

“That you, Air Marshal Mohammed Dikko Umar, whilst being the Chief of Air Staff of the Nigerian Air Force between September 2010 to October 2012 in Abuja, within the jurisdiction of the court, directly converted the United States Dollars equivalent of the aggregate sum of N4,846,630,000.00 (Four billion, eight hundred and forty six million, six hundred and thirty thousand naira) only removed from the accounts of the Nigerian Air Force, when you reasonably ought to have known that the said funds formed part of the proceeds of your unlawful activity, to wit, criminal breach of trust and corruption, and you thereby committed an offense contrary Section 15(2)(b) of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2011 as amended and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.”

Mr. Umar pleaded not guilty.

His attorney, Hassan Liman, moved for a bail application on self-recognition, arguing that his client had been granted bail when he was docked on May 11, 2016.

EFCC counsel Sylvanus Tahir opposed the bail application, but Justice Dimgba ultimately granted Mr. Umar bail, saying he should continue with his earlier bail condition and produce two sureties of either civil servants or businessmen with landed property at any satellite area in Abuja. Should Mr. Umar fail to honor his bail condition, he will be remanded in prison custody, the judge added.

He then adjourned the case to February 13 and 14, 2017.

“I Was Forced To Write Statement”, Dudafa Accuses EFCC.

The Federal High Court has adjourned till February 13, it’s ruling on the admissibility of a court order on which authority the EFCC remanded a former Senior Special Assistant on Domestic Affairs to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, Waripamo-Owei Dudafa.

The defendant had contended that the EFCC remanded him in custody without access to his lawyers.


He had also denied statements made in custody insisting that the statements were dictated and he was mentally tortured to sign them in order to regain his freedom.


Under cross-examination on Tuesday from Mr Rotimi Oyedepo, the Counsel to the EFCC, Mr Dudafa denied being offered administrative bail by the commission.


He, however, admitted that one Barrister Sylvanus Habila who is his Uncle came to his rescue and acted as his lawyer.


The EFCC says the administrative bail was not completed because the lawyer recommended on behalf of the defendant’s sureties produced forged documents before the commission.


The EFCC told the court that this lawyer was also present in court when the remand order from a magistrate court was obtained.


Mr Dudafa, however, insisted that the lawyer was seen and not heard as the remand proceedings was an exparte one.


A move to tender the remand order in court to show that the lawyer made an argument for Mr Dudafas bail in the Magistrate court was rebuffed by the Defence Counsel, Mr Gboyega Oyewole who insisted that the document was not certified neither was it properly produced before the court.


The EFCC insisted that the document was produced in its primary form and did not require certification.


Following arguments and counter arguments on the issue, Justice Mohammed Idris adjourned till Feb 13 to consider his ruling on the admissibility of the document.


Mr Dudafa is testifying in a trial-within-trial to determine the voluntariness of some statements he made while in the custody of the EFCC after his arrest on charges of illegally concealing about 1.6billion Naira which were alleged to be proceeds of crime.


Source: Channels TV

EFCC Urges Final Forfeiture Of Funds Allegedly Diverted By Allison-Madueke

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has told a Federal High Court in Lagos State that an Executive Director of First Bank Plc, Mr Dauda Lawal, allegedly laundered funds on behalf of former Minister of Petroleum, Mrs Diezani Allison-Madueke.


The counsel representing the EFCC, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo, made the revelation on Tuesday while responding to a counter affidavit by the bank official.


Mr Lawal is seeking to discharge an interim forfeiture order of the sum of 9.08 billion naira.


About three weeks ago, Justice Muslim Hassan issued an interim order of forfeiture of the sum of $153 million to the Federal Government, following an ‘exparte application’ filed by the EFCC.


The EFCC linked the funds to Mrs Allison-Madueke.


The court had also issued 14 days to any interested party to appear and prove the legitimacy of the monies, failing which the funds would be permanently forfeited to the government.


At the resumed hearing of the case on Tuesday, Mr Charles Adeogun-Phillips announced appearance for Mr Lawal who is joined as respondent in the suit.


In his arguments before the court, Mr Adeogun-Phillips challenged the forfeiture order and urged the court to issue an order, directing a refund of the sum of 9.08 billion naira to his client, on the grounds that same was obtained by coercion.


He argued that his client admitted having received the sum of $25 million in clear dispensation of his duties, but was purportedly coerced by the commission to further admit receiving a total of $65 million.


The 9.08 billion naira represents the naira equivalent of the difference of $40 million which Mr Lawal said he was also made to give up after being coerced.


EFCC Counsel, Mr Oyedepo, however, challenged the claims and insisted that the First Bank boss allegedly conspired with some other persons to launder funds on behalf of Mrs Allison-Madueke.


He urged the court to order a final forfeiture of the $153 million and the 9.08 billion naira already surrendered by the respondent, to the government.


After listening to all the lawyers, Justice Hassan fixed the February 16 for judgment.


Source: Channels TV

Uproar in Senate over Buhari’s support for Babachir, Magu.

There was uproar at the Senate yesterday over President Muhammadu Buhari’s continued support for the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), David Babachir and the acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu.

In two separate letters read by Senate President Bukola Saraki, President Buhari pointed out perceived flaws in the resolutions of the upper legislative chamber last December against Babachir and Magu.

Among the complaints is that the Senate committee breached the rule of fair hearing by refusing to invite Babachir to any of its sections. The presidency also alleged that the report on which the lawmakers based their decision was interim not the final report.

The uneasy calm in the chamber as Saraki read the letter suddenly broke into uproar when he attempted to cut short a remark by the chairman of the ad hoc committee that investigated and indicted the SGF, Shehu Sani (APC, Kaduna Central). The lawmakers resorted to chanting “Go ahead! Go ahead!! Go ahead!!!” to encourage Sani to continue his remark despite Saraki’s interjection.

When calm returned, Sani described the president’s letter against the Senate’s resolution on Babachir as “a funeral service of the anti-corruption war”.

According to him, the anti-graft campaign is so selective to the extent that when it has to do with the National Assembly, the judiciary and other segments of the society, the president uses insecticides but when it concerns anybody in the executive arm of government, he uses deodorants.

The lawmaker and civil rights activist said: “It is unfortunate that we have a political atmosphere where you have a saintly and angelic presidency and a devilish and evil society. We must in every respect fight corruption within the kitchen as we do in the veranda; if we don’t do that, then we are being hypocritical. This letter does not in any way reflect the spirit which we espouse as a people fighting to cleanse and fumigate this country of corruption.

“It is shocking to me that such a letter can come from the presidency with such misinformation and outright distortions. They lied by saying that the committee didn’t invite the SGF; the committee invited the SGF and the letter was acknowledged by the Permanent Secretary in the Office of the SGF, Mr. Aminu Nadehu

“To make sure that we buttress our point, we made a paid advert in three or four national dailies: this one was published on December 2, 2016 and the SGF is clearly mentioned as one of those expected to come and appear before the National Assembly.
“If they have the intention of simply reaching a pre-determined conclusion by covering up on the issues raised by the committee, that is one thing.”

On the president’s allegation that the report that indicted Babachir was signed by only three of the nine members of the committee, Sani said:

“That was also a second lie coming from the presidency. I have a copy of the interim report which was initially signed by seven of the nine members of that committee and I am going to submit it to the Clerk of the Senate. Even if it is nine and then three people signed, we still have a quorum, but here I have seven people.

“I will say also that I listened to the list of the names that were read and they omitted the chairman which is myself. I know I am not very big in frame but I believe my name shouldn’t have been omitted.”

Condemning the president’s response further, Sani said: “This shows clearly how the SGF and his minions in the presidency misinformed the president to sign this letter. Secondly, I will say this clearly, this letter is a funeral service for the anti-corruption fight.

“ Mr. President, I stand by the report of that committee and it is very clear to us: if we can allow this committee’s report to be shredded into pieces, then I think it would be in order for us to open all the 138 prisons in this country for all the convicts and awaiting trial inmates to go scot-free.”

At an earlier closed-door session that lasted for two hours, the senators took their turns to condemn Buhari’s response to the resolutions against Babachir and Magu.

It was learnt that the lawmakers particularly condemned why Buhari refused to address the issues raised in the DSS security report on Magu. “Is it that the report never existed or that it has been withdrawn?” a senator queried.

The lawmakers faulted the manner in which the Buhari’s letter was delivered in sharp contrast with the normal tradition of message delivery to the Senate.

“The letter was dated 17th of January but it was sent to the Senate president at 10:00 p.m. of 22 January. It was delivered to Saraki by hand and not through the normal message delivery channel to the Senate. Why the gap? Could it have been written by someone else and backdated?” another senator wondered.

It was pointed out at the closed-door session that the Senate would be breaching its rule if it went ahead to screen Magu.“The Senate rule forbids it from considering any matter upon which a judicial decision is pending. Why can’t we wait until the matter is decided upon by the court?” a lawmaker said.

The Senate said it would stand by its resolutions.Briefing journalists shortly after the session yesterday, Chairman of the Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Abdullahi Saabi Aliu, said the Senate had taken note of the fact that the president did not address the issues raised in the security report upon which the chamber refused to consider the nomination of Magu.

A Federal High Court in Lagos had fixed February 13 to hear a suit filed against Magu, challenging his continued stay in office as EFCC acting chairman.

EFCC rearraigns Dasuki, five others for diversion of funds.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Tuesday re-arraigned, retired Col. Sambo Dasuki, a former National Security Adviser (NSA) and five others, for alleged diversion, and criminal breach of trust at an FCT High Court.

The others were Bashir Yuguda, Shuaibu Salisu, a former Director of Finance, Office of the NSA, Dalhatu Investment Ltd., Sagir Attahiru and Attahiru Bafarawa, a former governor of Sokoto State.

They were re-arraigned on a 22-count charge before Justice Hussein Baba-Yusuf, and they pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Baba-Yusuf ordered that the existing bail condition is maintained after listening to submissions of all counsel to the defendants and the prosecuting counsel.

The Prosecuting counsel, Mr Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), opposed the upholding of Dasuki’s bail, saying that he was still being held by the Department of State Services (DSS) since he was granted bail earlier.

Jacobs also applied for a date to open his case against the defendants since they pleaded not guilty to the charges.
This, he said, was in accordance with Section 396 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015, which provides for day-to-day trial.

Dasuki’s counsel, Mr Ahmed Raji (SAN), objected, saying that the EFCC brought his client to court and not DSS.
He also said that ECOWAS court had earlier given a valid judgment on the issue and objected to the suggestion of Rotimi.
He argued that the day-to-day trial was when the case fully commences.

The counsel for other defendants aligned with Dr Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), Counsel to Bafaarawa, saying that Section 396 of ACJA should not be put above the provisions of in Section 36 of the 1999 Constitution as amended.

Fagbemi said that the section provides for fair hearing and so it would not be right for the defendants to be arraigned today and trial to commence tomorrow.

Baba-Yusuf adjourned till Feb. 24 for the commencement of trial.

Dasuki and others were earlier arraigned on a 22-count charge bordering on diversion, conspiracy, bribery, abuse of office and criminal breach of trust of about N19.4 billion before Justice Peter Affen in December 2015.
The defendants were also granted bail by Affen in the sum of N250 million each with two sureties each in the like sum.

Affen said that one of the sureties must be a retired or serving civil servant in Federal Government’s employment, reside within the court’s jurisdiction and own landed property in Abuja.

The case was consolidated and transferred to Baba-Yusuf’s court following an application by Chief Joseph Daudu, counsel to Dasuki.


Source: Guardian

UK gets evidence against Diezani, as EFCC set to proceed with interrogation.

The United Kingdom (UK) is now in possession of a pile of evidence against former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, courtesy of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission


A team of EFCC detectives was on standby yesterday to proceed to London to interrogate the ex-minister.

Sources familiar with her investigation by the EFCC told The Nation that all the evidence gathered by the anti-graft agency on Diezani had been handed over to UK investigators. The Acting Chairman of the EFCC, Mr. Ibrahim Magu accompanied by some detectives took the evidence to the National Crime Agency in the UK. “The evidence includes an inventory of more than 15 choice properties at home and abroad, her account status, documents and vital video clips,” the source said. “The evidence was taken to London in preparation for her trial.

In fact, one or two persons indicted in the fuel subsidy scandal are already in detention in the UK ahead of her trial.

Responding to a question, the source added: “We are also sending some EFCC detectives to the UK to interrogate Diezani on some issues. We need to obtain her statement too on certain allegations against her in Nigeria.

“We learnt that she has substantially ‘recovered’ and we want our team to interview her in London.

“When the trial begins, Nigerians will have a full insight into our findings against the ex-minister.”

Continuing, the EFCC source said: “We have placed some of these properties under temporary asset forfeiture. We are still investigating some properties allegedly bought by the ex-minister through some proxies.

“But we have submitted a documentary on all these assets to investigators in the UK. We also discovered a box which was full of jewelry and expensive wrist watches in one of the properties with price tags.

“Some detectives who visited Nigeria from the UK inspected this box which we may transfer to the UK.

“On the $115million poll bribery scandal, we have video clips of how electoral officials and politicians were hauling cash from banking halls.

EFCC does not engage in a personal vendetta. Nigerians will know the truth at the end of the trial either in Nigeria or in the UK.”

EFCC nailed me with fake documents, says Jonathan’s former aide Waripamo-Owei Dudafa

Waripamo-Owei Dudafa, a former aide to former President Goodluck Jonathan, on Monday told a federal high court in Lagos that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) forced him to implicate the immediate past president.


Dudafa, who is standing trial for alleged corruption, told the court that the anti-graft agency obtained statements from him under duress, and “nailed” him with “fake documents”.


He said his oral and written statements were all extracted through the use of force during his detention in the commission’s facility.


Dudafa said during the period, he had pains from a spinal cord ailment but the commission denied him adequate medical treatment. He added that he was forced to write all the statements he made, and was induced to sign in exchange for freedom.


Dudafa said he was arrested on April 17, 2016, and kept in detention until the evening of the following day without an explanation on the cause of his arrest.


He said he was eventually taken to EFCC’s office on Awolowo Road in Lagos, for interrogation, where he made four statements and filled an asset declaration form that he described as a sham.


He said the operatives of the commission denied him access to food, as his family members were barred from bringing him food.


“April 27 till May 12 was so tormenting. Sometimes I was taken out from the detention centre and kept in EFCC office between 8am and 8pm, and sometimes until 11pm depending on their mood,” he said.


“The ailment I have today is a spinal cord dislocation. It was within that period of my torture and agony that my spinal cord got dislocated.


“I was not in the best frame to write statements but they went on to force them from me. The document remains fake as they only brought out those items to nail me.”


He also said the operatives denied him access to counsel as of the time the statements were extracted, adding that “in fact my lawyers were driven away”.


Dudafa said EFCC officials only gave him paracetamol and aspirin, and allowed him to visit an in-house medical doctor when his situation worsened.


He said the EFCC doctor referred him to a military hospital, where tests revealed that he had a spinal cord injury and needed to see a specialist.


Dudafa informed the court that he was not taken to any specialist, adding that the commission turned down the request of his family to bring in a specialist to the facility to examine him.


“My Lord, I was dehumanised to the extent that I got scared of the people around me. The mistreatment was also extended to my immediate family as they froze my wife’s bank account and my children’s schools savings accounts in a bid to frustrate and break me down,” he said.


“When I realised that I did not make any statements voluntarily I raised objections.”


During cross examination by Rotimi Oyedepo, EFCC’s prosecutor, Dudafa admitted that he was cautioned before making the statements.


He said he was also never forced to admit committing any crime in the statements. However, he insisted that he was asked to sign the statements.


Mohammed Idris, the judge, adjourned the case till January 24 for continuation of the trial-within-trial.


EFCC had arraigned him and Iwejuo Joseph Nna alias Taiwo Ebenezer and Olugbenga Isaiah, before Justice Idris on 23-counts of conspiracy and concealment of crime proceeds.


They were accused of conspiring to conceal proceeds of crime amounting to over N1.6 billion on June 11, 2013. However, they pleaded not guilty to all the counts.


It was alleged that between June 1 and June 4, 2015, Dudafa procured Nna and Ebiwise Resources to conceal N150 million being proceeds of crime.


Source: The Cable

President Buhari re-nominates Magu as EFCC chairman

President Muhammadu Buhari has re-nominated Ibrahim Magu for confirmation as chairman of Nigeria’s anti-graft agency, EFCC.

Multiple sources knowledgeable about the development, including presidency officials, have spoken with PREMIUM TIMES on the re-nomination.

The Senate had in December last year declined to confirm Mr. Magu as the substantive chairman of EFCC, ending months of delay and rancorous power-play involving influential senators, the State Security Service, SSS, and officials of the presidency opposed to Mr. Magu’s headship of the agency.

The spokesperson for the Senate, Aliyu Abdullahi, at a hurriedly arranged press conference, cited a security report from the SSS for the non-confirmation of Mr. Magu.

PREMIUM TIMES’ findings revealed the SSS actually turned in two reports with contradictory conclusions. Both were submitted same day, October 3, 2016, and signed by one official, Folashade Bello, on behalf of the Director-General, Lawan Daura.

Nevertheless, the claims in the two reports, reviewed by this newspaper, were tied around the principal charge that Mr. Magu seemed tainted, integrity-challenged and, thus, may become a liability to the anti-graft campaign of the Buhari administration.

But a fact-check by this newspaper showed that the SSS’ claims were inaccurate.

After the presidency received formal notice from the Senate on Mr. Magu’s rejection, Mr. Buhari announced he was referring all allegations of corruption against top officials of his government, including Mr. Magu, to the Attorney-General for investigations.

“But contrary to popular belief,” one of our sources said, “the investigation of the claims made against Magu is not just for the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation.”

The source said the Vice-president, Yemi Osinbajo, played a leading role in the investigation and ended up absolving Mr. Magu of any culpability, morally or legally, and afterwards recommending that he should be re-nominated by the President.

Besides the investigation that involved the Vice-President and the Justice Minister, the presidential advisory council on anti-corruption also undertook a separate task and equally advised Mr. Buhari to re-nominate Mr. Magu, PREMIUM TIMES understands.

Consequently, the President ignored the SSS reports and brushed aside plots to stop Mr. Magu.

Mr. Osinbajo and the Itse Sagay-led anti-corruption advisory council were believed to have categorically advised the President that Mr. Magu’s rejection by the Senate was in bad faith and the SSS’ claims against him were inconsequential.

So, before the President left the country last Thursday for the United Kingdom, he signed off the letter for Mr. Magu’s re-nomination for transfer to the Senate through the Office of the Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari, our sources aware of the process said.

But we cannot confirm if the Senate had received the letter as at the time of filing this report. The spokesperson for the Senate, Mr. Abdullahi, did not answer calls or reply a text message.

Presidential spokesperson, Femi Adesina, referred all questions on the matter to Laolu Akande, Vice President Osinbajo’s spokesperson.

Mr. Akande did not pick calls or reply a text message sent to him.

The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, insiders said, is personally opposed to Mr. Magu’s headship of EFCC and was one of the key figures that ensured he was rejected earlier.

Mr. Magu, as the head of the EFCC’s economic governance unit, spent years investigating Mr. Saraki yielding loads of ‘evidence’ of corruption and abuse of office during the latter’s tenure as Kwara State Governor, 2003-2011.

Mainly, the evidence the federal government now uses against Mr. Saraki at the Code of Conduct Tribunal were from Mr. Magu’s investigative efforts.

To ensure Mr. Magu was rejected, PREMIUM TIMES learnt, Mr. Saraki only disclosed the SSS report that Mr. Magu should not be confirmed, concealing the other that recommended his confirmation.

The former Senate Leader, Ali Ndume, said his removal earlier this year was instigated by Mr. Saraki over his insistence that Mr. Magu had not been rejected in the face of the Senate’s procedure and standard practice.


Source: Premium Times

EFCC Arrests LG Councilor, Six Others For Diverting IDPs’ Rice

A supervisory councilor with Mafa local government area of Borno State, Umar Ibrahim, has been arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) in Maiduguri over alleged diversion of 300 bags of rice meant for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the area.


Ibrahim, who supervises the local government’s agricultural department, was arrested alongside others named Bulama Ali Zangebe and Modu Bulama in a sting operation carried out by officials of the EFCC zonal office in Maiduguri.


According to the EFCC, the food was donated to victims of insurgency in the area by Danish Refugee Council (DRC).


Mafa local government is among the areas destroyed by Boko Haram in Borno State.


According to the EFCC,  the suspects after interrogation disclosed they acted on directives from the Caretaker Chairman of Mafa local government area, Shettima Lawan Maina.


The suspects claimed the local government chairman directed them to sell the rice.


The rice was reportedly sold to the duo of Alhaji Lawan Ibrahim of Bolori Stores and Umar Salisu at the rate of N8, 500 per bag.

EFCC arrests OSOPADEC boss, three others over alleged corruption

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday arrested the Chairman of the Ondo State Oil Producing Areas and Development Commission (OSOPADEC), Pastor Johnson Ogunyemi and three other principal officers.

The officers included the Secretary, Dr. Dele Durojaye, the Director of Finance, Sola Orisamoluwa and the Director of Account, Vincent Ikuomola.The Guardian learnt that the officials of the anti-graft agency stormed the headquarters of the commission yesterday afternoon and locked the main gate before heading to the chairman’s office.

The main gate was locked to prevent the movement of people into the compound while some police officers were assigned there. Officials of the anti-graft commission spent about three hours in the offices of the four officials before leaving with some files and documents.

Another member of staff of the commission said the arrest was a petition by interested stakeholders seeking explanation on the spending of the commission in the last eight years.

“The commission had failed to render financial records to the public in the last eight years and this might be one of the petitions against it before the EFCC,” he stated.
Meanwhile, the anti-graft agency has expressed worry over suspects accused of economic crimes sneaking out of the country even when their international passports had been seized.

EFCC, therefore, called for synergy with the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) to help track such suspects.The Head of its South South office, Ishaq Salilu, stated this yesterday while receiving the Comptroller of Immigration, Rivers State, A. B. Yarima, who was on a courtesy call. Salilu said the partnership would help check the activities of criminals in the country.

He added that the Nigeria Immigration Service being a crucial agency in the country would assist the EFCC to track fraudsters, who despite having their international passports seized by the commission still sneak out of the country through dubious means.“How they disappear remains a mystery to us,” he said.


Source: Guardian

Patience Jonathan’s suit against EFCC slated for February 13

A Federal High Court Lagos, on Wednesday fixed February 13 to hear a suit by ex-first lady, Patience Jonathan, against the EFCC seeking to unfreeze her account.

Also joined in the suit are Skye Bank Plc, and a former Special Assistant to ex-President Jonathan, Waripama-Owei Dudafa.

Others include Pluto Property and Investment Company Ltd, Seagate Property Development and Investment Company Ltd, Transocean Property and Investment Company Ltd and Globus Integrated Service Ltd.

Mrs. Jonathan is demanding $200 million from the commission as damages for infringing on her rights.

She also prayed the court to issue an order discharging the freezing order, as well as restrain the EFCC and its agents from further placing a freezing order on the said accounts.

At the resumed hearing of the case on Wednesday, Mrs. Jonathan’s lawyers, Ifedayo Adedipe, sought an adjournment to enable him serve his client’s amended claims on the companies.

He added that other defendants had been served with copies of the processes, while they have also served their counter-affidavits on the plaintiff.

In the absence of any objection from the EFCC counsel, the matter was eventually adjourned to February13 for further hearing.

In an affidavit in support of Mrs. Jonathan’s suit and deposed to by one Sammie Somiari, he said that on March 22, 2010, Mrs. Jonathan had opened five different accounts with Skye Bank, with the aid of one Damola Bolodeoku and Dipo Oshodi.

He averred that the account mandate forms were duly completed and signed by her.

Mr. Somiari stated that Mrs. Jonathan subsequently discovered that apart from one of the accounts that bore her name, the other four accounts were opened in the name of four companies which belonged to Mr. Dudafa.

He also averred that she observed that the ATM cards of the said accounts were issued in the names of the companies, adding that she complained to Mr. Dudafa, who promised to effect the necessary changes.

He said Dipo Oshodi (a Skye Bank official) also promised to effect the necessary changes.

According to Mr. Somiari, Mrs. Jonathan is not a director, shareholder or participant in these companies and the funds in the said accounts are solely owned and operated by her.

“Dudafa does not own any part of the funds in the said accounts.”

According to the deponent, the Skye Bank official (Oshodi) did not affect the instructions of the plaintiff to change the name of the said accounts to her name, in spite of repeated request.

He averred that notwithstanding the refusal of the bank to effect the necessary changes, she had been using the said ATM cards without any interference.

The deponent averred that sometimes in July, Mrs. Jonathan discovered that the ATM cards were not functioning, and immediately contacted the bank which informed her that a “No debit/freezing order’’ have been placed on the accounts.

He also averred that on further enquiry, the bank informed her that the accounts were frozen on the directive of EFCC as a result of ongoing investigation in relation to Dudafa.

Mrs. Jonathan, therefore, contends that she was never arrested or invited by EFCC prior to the freezing order placed on the accounts, said to contain about $15 million.

She further contends that the freezing order on her funds by the directive of EFCC without an order of the court is unlawful and illegal.

Consequently, Mrs. Jonathan is also seeking an order of court, directing the unfreezing of her account forthwith.

She also wants an order restraining the EFCC from taking further steps in relation to the said accounts pending the determination of the suit.


Source: NAN

Lagos lawyer want Court to stop Magu from parading himself as EFCC chairman

A Lagos based lawyer and activist, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa on Monday filed a suit at the court which seek to stop Ibrahim Magu from parading himself as the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC).

In the suit which was filed at a Federal High Court in Lagos, Adegboruwa is also asking the Senate not to entertain any further request for the confirmation of Magu as Chairman since the Senate has declined to confirm his nomination as Chairman of the Commission.

Aside from Magu, other defendants in the suit are the Senate and the Attorney-General of the Federation(AGF).

The human right lawyer asked the court to restrain the Federal Government of Nigeria, the EFCC and all other authorities, from recognizing, treating or in any other manner dealing with Magu as the Chairman of EFCC, either in acting or substantive capacity.

Adegboruwa also sought for a declaration of the court that given his conduct in office so far, that Magu is not fit and proper person to function in office as chairman of EFCC.

The lawyer asked the court to give an order forthwith directing Magu to vacate and relinquish his office as EFCC Chairman, whether in acting or substantive capacity.

He also contends in the suit that all actions taken by the EFCC under the ‘illegal’ tenure of Magu, especially charges and information filed in court, are illegal, null and void.

In a 39 paragraphs affidavit deposed by Adegboruwa in support of the suit, he traced the appointment of Magu back to November 9, 2015, contending that he has been functioning in acting capacity as EFCC Chairman, beyond the six months allowed by law.

No date has been fixed for hearing of the suit.

Source: Daily Trust

Billionaire arrested for money laundering in UK convicted for fraud in Nigeria

A Nigerian billionaire, Walter Wagbatsoma, has been convicted of fraud by a Lagos court.

Adaoha Ugo-Nnadi, convicted alongside Mr. Wagbatsoma for fuel subsidy fraud, fainted in the dock Friday as the judge began to read the sentence for her conviction forcing the proceedings to be rescheduled to Monday.

Mrs. Ugo-Nnadi, Mr. Wagbatsoma, and their company, Ontario Oil and Gas, were convicted on an eight-count amended charge of fuel subsidy fraud before the Ikeja Division of the Lagos High Court.

The minimum sentence for the crime is seven years while the maximum is 20 years.

Mr. Wagbatsoma, the first convict, is currently under house arrest in the United Kingdom where he is accused of money laundering.

Justice Lateefat Okunnu, however, discharged and acquitted the third defendant, Babafemi Fakuade, an employee of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency.

“The case of the prosecution against the first, second, and fourth defendants has been proved beyond reasonable doubt and they are convicted on each of the eight counts,” the judge said.

As soon as Mrs. Okunnu returned after a 30-minute recess to read her sentencing, Mrs. Ugo-Nnadi, who was seated in the dock, collapsed in a heap leaving her relatives scrambling for water to resuscitate her.

The judge directed that a medical doctor be summoned and announced she would read her final judgment on Monday.

The convict, crying and retching on the floor inside the dock, was carried into her waiting Sports Utility Vehicle, and rushed to a hospital.

It was a dramatic end to a day that began with the suspects strolling around the courtroom in an ebullient mood before the judge’s arrival around 9.20 a.m. Mrs. Ugo-Nnadi, decked in an immaculate blue attire, slapped the arm of a friend telling her to “cheer up,” and a few moments later laughed at a seemingly hilarious joke shared by her lawyer.

The defendants were first arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, in 2012 for fraud, forgery, and conspiracy amounting to N1.9 billion in the fuel subsidy scheme.

They were later re-arraigned in 2013 after the trial judge was elevated to the Court of Appeal, and then again in 2016 on an eight-count amended charge.

They had pleaded not guilty to all the charges.


The judge said the prosecution had accused Mr. Wagbatsoma, Mrs. Ugo-Nnadi, and Ontario Oil and Gas of collecting N942 billion as subsidy payment instead of N602 million.

Mr. Wagbatsoma is the chairman of the company while Mrs. Ugo-Nnadi is the managing director.

The judge also said the prosecution gave evidence that the convicts discharged “a much lesser quantity” of petrol in their transaction with the government and presented a forged shore tank certificate.

“The fourth defendant defrauded the federal government of N340 million,” she said.

A prosecution witness gave evidence that, in the first transaction, Ontario Oil paid N37 million for 12 million litres of fuel in a throughput agreement with Integrated oil and Gas, but later collected subsidy for 19 million litres.

In the second transaction, the company collected subsidy for 19 million litres while they paid a throughput agreement with Obat Oil worth N28 million for 10 million litres of fuel.

“Both the first and second defendants signed the cheque for the throughput agreement,” the judge quoted the witness as saying.

Another prosecution witness, Obinna Ukonu, a store officer at Integrated Oil and Gas, gave evidence that Ontario brought in 12 million litres of fuel via a mother vessel, MT Pacific, and then a daughter vessel, MT Union Brave. The same quantity was “trucked out” by the company.

“I find that there is credible, concrete evidence that the quantity of petrol discharged was 12 million litres,” said the judge.

“Evidence by the prosecution is that the product was discharged into one tank which cannot contain more than 16.5 million litres because of an inbuilt floating roof that takes about two million litres.”

An exhibit that the judge described as “very damaging” to the defendants’ case was Exhibit D1, a calibrated report which showed that the tank in question cannot contain more than 18 million litres of fuel.


In 2012, when the convicts were first arraigned, Mr. Wagbatsoma was absent.

Rotimi Jacobs, the EFCC counsel, told the then judge, Habeeb Abiru, that he had fled to the U.S. to avoid trial.

When he eventually returned to face trial, the judge imposed a N450 million bail on him.

In July last year, despite the court holding his international passport and other travel documents, Mr. Wagbatsoma was arrested in Germany and extradited to the UK to face money laundering charges.

He is currently under house arrest in the UK.

On Friday, the judge said Mr. Wagbatsoma during his testimony tried to distance himself from the running of Ontario Oil and Gas.

“The first defendant while testifying laboured to convince the court that he was not involved in the day to day running of the fourth defendant, but he signs the cheques,” Mrs. Okunnu said.

“He is of sound, literate mind. Over and over again, he informed the court he sits on the board of 27 companies. He knew what he was doing when he signed those cheques, and there is evidence that he used the money from the subsidy payment.”

For Mrs. Ugo-Nnadi, the judge described her as the “operating mind and the alter ego” of the company.

“She had full knowledge of the entire exercise.”

The judge also said she had no doubt that the company forged shore tank certificate, used for the subsidy payment.

“I find the first, second, and fourth defendants guilty of forgery. All three of them conspired as there was a meeting of minds,” she said.

The case against Mr. Fakuade, who was discharged and acquitted, was that he signed and embossed the PPPRA stamp on a forged document, the judge said.

“There is nothing that shows that he was aware of the real document that showed the actual amount of fuel discharged. It was simply gross negligence on his part.”


Before she began reading the sentencing for the crimes, the defence lawyers said they would make a “plea allocotus” – to beg the judge to temper justice with mercy.

The lawyer said Mrs. Ugo-Nnadi had been having “very serious health challenges” but has managed to be attending all the trial proceedings.

“It is our humble plea that a custodial sentence will do serious damage to her health as a result of the crowding in the prison and three or four doctors to hundreds of inmates,” the lawyer said.

He said his client is a mother of “very young children” and a prison stay would deprive her children of her “mother and father” roles.

He also said the embarrassment and loss of businesses the second defendant had suffered is enough restitution for her crime.

“The second defendant throughout the trial has suffered psychologically. She has been the butt of publications online, written press, television. She has suffered so much.”

But Mr. Jacobs said anything short of sending the convict to prison would make a mockery of the fight against corruption.

“It will send a wrong signal that custodial sentence is the preserve of the poor and the rich cannot go to jail,” said Mr. Jacobs, a senior advocate of Nigeria.

“The purpose of our criminal law is to ensure that those who contravene the law do not escape the consequences of the law.”

How fraud kingpin duped BDC operators – EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Tuesday narrated to the Federal High Court in Lagos how it apprehended the alleged kingpin of a fraud syndicate which specialised in duping Bureau De Change operators in the country.

The alleged kingpin, Princewell Eze, alias Aboki J. Brown, was brought before Justice Saliu Saidu on Tuesday, where he is being tried for an alleged fraud of $92,000.

The EFCC claimed that the accused duped one Akinlabi Akinpelu, a Bureau De Change operator, whose office was at Sura Market, Lagos Island sometime in 2013.

The prosecution told Justice Saidu that Eze approached  Akinpelu and falsely claimed to be an Assistant Director with the African Development Bank at Abidjan, Ivory Coast, who wanted to buy $65,000.

The defendant was said to have told the BDC operator to follow him with the $65,000 to a nearby bank where he would pay the naira equivalent of the foreign currency.

According to the prosecution, after further talks between the accused and BDC operator, Eze latter increased the amount of the foreign currency he wanted to buy to $92,000.

Led in evidence on Tuesday by the EFCC prosecutor, Mr. Rotimi Oyedepo, an EFCC operative, Odunayo Dada, said, “The complainant was convinced that the defendant was an Assistant Director with the African Development Bank. He released the money to the defendant and asked his dispatch rider to follow the defendant to a nearby bank. The dispatch rider entered the Hilux jeep that the defendant came with. But instead of driving to the bank, the defendant drove the dispatch rider to Lekki-Ajah Express Road where he and his gang members attacked the dispatch rider.”

EFCC asks court to remand Shema, ex-Katsina gov, in prison.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Tuesday arraigned Ibrahim Shema, former governor of Katsina state, alongside three others before Ibrahim Bako, a justice of Katsina high court.

He was arraigned on a 22-count charge bordering on criminal breach of trust and misappropriation of public funds.

Jibrin Samuel, the agency’s counsel, urged the court to revoke an administrative bail earlier given to Shema for showing some “signs of not reporting to the commission” as agreed.

Samuel demanded that Shema be remanded in prison so that there could be access to him at will.

Joseph Daudu, the defence counsel, objected to the prayer of the EFCC counsel.

Daudu argued that the state high court had no jurisdiction to try his client, adding that Shema should be allowed to go home until the case had been appropriately filed.

Bako ruled that it was premature for the EFCC counsel to pray for the detention of the ex-governor.

He advised both sides to take the case slowly in order to have a decent trial, and adjourned the case till February 7 for mention.

EFCC goes after ex-NNPC bosses over Diezani’s $153m theft

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has interrogated five former executive officials of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) over the questionable transfer of  $153million from the Corporation’s accounts, The Nation reports.

Those  interrogated so far are two former Group Managing Directors (GMDs) and three former Executive Directors (EDs) whose names were withheld so as not to jeopardise the investigation.

Former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke allegedly ordered the transfer of the money.

One of the former executive directors is said to have admitted playing a role in the transfer of the money, the report said, citing an EFCC source.

“We are however not stopping at this bend because we discovered that some of these officials were used for many illicit transactions,” the source said.

“By the time we extend our investigation to crude oil lifting, you will appreciate the sleaze during the tenure of Diezani as minister of Petroleum Resources. A syndicate was used to perpetrate the fraud in the oil firm.”

According to the report, the interrogation of the former officials was confirmed by a source at the NNPC.

The source said: “This corporation is following the development. The EFCC is on top of the $153million palaver; it has actually been inviting some of our past officials for questioning.

“The good thing is that some of these former officials are still on NNPC’s pension roll. They can be recalled at any time for clarification of some issues.”

The source, however, refused to give names of those quizzed by the anti-graft agency, saying he would have to obtain authorization from the administration and security departments.

On the ruling of a Federal High Court on the $153million, the source said the NNPC cannot react to it without  “getting necessary legal advice.”

“Our board is meeting on the $153million saga and other matters on January 30. What we are doing now is to get the proceedings of the Federal High Court of Friday. We have a very articulate Legal Department which will study it.

“NNPC is a corporation with a board and a chairman. The legal advice will determine our next step after the board’s meeting.

“If the court indicts any former officials, the corporation can still exercise disciplinary control on them,” the source added.

Meanwhile, the EFCC has reportedly started the process of seizing large estate in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State traced to Diezani.

It was gathered that the asset will be placed on temporary forfeiture pending the arraignment and trial of the ex-minister either in Nigeria or in the United Kingdom.

An EFCC source was quoted as saying: “Since we recorded the breakthrough, our legal unit has been working round the clock on how to seek the nod of the court for a temporary forfeiture order.

“We have obtained relevant data from Bayelsa State Geographic Information System.  As a matter of fact, the estate is coded as BGIS/OK/02/16/310 by the agency.

“We will file the required application for the seizure of the estate pending the arraignment and the conclusion of the trial of the ex-Minister. This is a standard benchmark allowed by the law. We are certainly heading for the court.”

On Friday, January 6, a Federal High Court in Lagos ordered the temporary forfeiture of the sum of $153,310,000, that Diezani allegedly siphoned from the NNPC.

The money was said to have been stashed in three Nigerian bank accounts.

The Nation: Why Buhari Is Yet To Decide SGF Lawal’s, Magu’s Fate.

President Muhammadu Buhari wants to hear the defence of  the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Engr. Babachir Lawal and the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission( EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu on the allegations against them before deciding of their fate,The Nation can now reveal.

Lawal is accused of  conflict of interest  because of inflation of contracts awarded to his company, Rholavision Engineering Limited, which was  incorporated in 1990 with RC No. 159855 at the Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC, Abuja while Magu’s nomination was not considered by the Senate because of a report by the Department of State Security Service( DSS) alleging some infractions by him.

The President was billed to meet with the Attorney-General of the Federation, Mr. Abubakar Malami( SAN) last night on issues pertaining to the allegations against the two officials.

A presidency source familiar with the matter said last night that the president ” prefers to hear from all sides and exhaust all options. He wants to be fair to everybody.”

Continuing,the source said:”Unlike what obtained when he was a military Head of State when he could treat such  issues with dispatch, he is being painstaking as a civilian leader.

“His decision on any issue is subjected to fairness to all, the rule of law and respect for the tenets of democracy.

“I know that he will be fair and judicious. He does not rush into issues again because we are in a democracy.”

Responding to a question, the reliable source added: “All I can assure you is that if any public officer is indicted, the President will not spare him or her.

“The President will certainly not shield or protect anyone, no matter how highly placed. But he will also not indulge in miscarriage of justice.”

Another source contacted yesterday said: “As part of his schedule for Friday, the President will have audience with the AGF who was mandated to look into some allegations by the Senate against the SGF and issues behind the suspension of the confirmation process of the Acting EFCC chairman by the Upper Chamber.

“We do not know whether or not the AGF will submit his report to the President. But he is part of those listed for audience with Buhari on Friday.”

Before its Christmas recess, the Senate had recommended  the sack of the SGF because of his alleged implication in the mismanagement and diversion of funds meant for the Internally Displaced Persons in the North-East.

The Senate also claimed that Lawal was involved in  a conflict of interest  because of inflation of contracts awarded to his company, Rholavision Engineering Limited, which was  incorporated in 1990 with RC No. 159855 at the Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC, Abuja.

The company was contracted to provide consultancy services for the removal of  wild grass species in Yobe State on 8th March, 2016.

The resolution of the Senate was sequel to contributions by Senator Dino Melaye, APC, Kogi West while contributing to the Interim Report of the Ad- hoc Committee on Mounting Humanitarian Crisis in the North East which  was presented by the Chairman, Senator Shehu Sani.

But the SGF said: “The Senate is talking balderdash; it has developed the habit of ‘bring him down syndrome’. Nigerians have decided that we should destroy our best; we should all destroy the promising and best among us by bringing people down without a cause. This is just how I saw it.”

The tension over the report made the President to ask the AGF to look into allegations against the SGF by the and get a response from Lawal.

Magu’s nomination, on the other hand,was not considered by the Senate because of a report by the Department of State Security Service( DSS) alleging some infractions.

Magu has however denied any wrongdoing in a response to a query by the AGF.

We are not aware of raid on Patience Jonathan’s house – EFCC, Police.

Some men of the Nigeria police on Wednesday evening raided the family house of Patience Jonathan, former first lady, without a search warrant.

A source, who confirmed the development to TheCable,  said the house is located at Igbeti Rock Street, Maitama, Abuja.

TheCable learnt that the police officers did not have a search warrant, and that house was unoccupied at the time of the raid.

Although, the first lady does not stay in the building, her younger brother lives there.

No incriminating item was found in the house.

TheCable called Wilson Uwujaren, spokesman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), to confirm if the anti-graft agency was behind the raid.

But he said the EFCC did not carry out the operation.

Also, Don Awunah, police spokesman, said he was not aware of the operation, but that he would make further inquiry.

“I am not aware, but I will make further inquiry,” he said in a text message to TheCable.

BREAKING: Security operatives raid house belonging to Goodluck Jonathan’s brother.

Security operatives, Wednesday evening, laid siege to an Abuja house belonging to a brother-in-law to Nigeria’s former president Goodluck Jonathan, sources close to the former leader confirmed to PREMIUM TIMES.


The house is located in Maitama, one of the enclaves of Nigeria’s rich in Abuja.


The spokespersons for the headquarters and Abuja command of the police said they were not aware of the operation, but security sources confirmed that police officers in uniform carried out the raid.


According to our sources, the operatives searched all the rooms in the house.


The house was allegedly bought for her brother by Patience Jonathan, who was said to be in Port Harcourt when the raid occurred on Wednesday.


Although Mrs. Jonathan has been having a running battle with the anti-graft agency, EFCC, over the ownership of a controversial $15 million, sources at the commission said the EFCC did not carry out the raid.


More details to follow…


Source: Premium Times

We are not withholding report to National Assembly – EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has denied a newspaper report that it was yet to submit its 2016 annual report to the National Assembly as statutorily provided.

The Commission in a statement by its spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, said it submitted the said report in line with its statutory obligation to do so by the end of last September.

Read the EFCC’s full statement below:

The attention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has been drawn to a report in the Daily Trust newspaper of Monday January 2, 2017 captioned, ‘EFCC Yet to Submit Report to N/Assembly’. The report among others, claimed that the Commission was in violation of its statutorily obligation to submit an Annual Report to the National Assembly by September 30.

This claim is not only false but shocking, coming from an otherwise respected medium like Daily Trust. Going through the report, it is pathetic that no attempts were made to verify the status of the report from either the EFCC or the relevant Committees of the National Assembly beyond the puerile claim that , “The chairman of the Senate Committees on Anti-corruption and Financial Crimes, Senator Utazi and his deputy, Senator Mustapha Sani (APC, Niger) were not available for comments last night”.

Relying on anonymous sources purportedly from the National Assembly, Daily Trust proceeded to paint a picture that fits perfectly into a script that leaves nothing to the imagination. According to Daily Trust, “The source added that the non confirmation of the commission’s acting Chairman Ibrahim Magu contributed to the delay in the submission of the report”. Pray, how did the non-confirmation of Mr. Magu on December 15, 2016 affect a report that was due for submission in September?

Not done, the newspaper claimed that, “Many lawmakers, former and serving are indicted in the EFCC reports, some before they were elected and others even while serving in the House or the Senate. So also are officials at the Presidency. It is not convenient for lawmakers to start debating report that exposes them to ridicule.

“Imagine an EFCC report that graphically presents eight principal officers and some members of the Senate and Reps and their fraudulent financial transactions including their hitherto unpublicised trails in a legislative session. There is also the pressure from the Presidency who are supposed to act on the decisions of the National Assembly on such reports exerting pressures on lawmakers to step down the report and move on,” he said.

These views purportedly attributed to National Assembly members are the invention of the authors of the story. No lawmaker worth his salt will make such comments as EFCC Annual Reports are not about individuals, but usually laden with facts and figures regarding its activities in a given year. It is obvious that Daily Trust is ignorant of the contents of a typical EFCC report and has visited this tragedy on its readers.

For the avoidance of doubt, the EFCC has never defaulted in submitting its annual reports to the National Assembly. The 2016 report was duly submitted and acknowledged by the relevant Committees of the Senate and the House of Representatives. A minor check with the relevant committees of the National Assembly, which the ethics of responsible journalism recommends, would have saved Daily Trust the blush of this monumental gaffe.

Wilson Uwujaren

Skye Bank Gave N1.8bn Loan To Purchase 47 Vehicles Seized From Perm Sec – EFCC

There are indications that over 40 vehicles allegedly recovered from Mr. Goodknows Igali, a former permanent secretary by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) may have acquired through a bank loan for use in the 2015 elections.

Investigations have revealed that the vehicles in question were purchased with a loan from Skye Bank, as part of the transportation plans for the Jonathan/Sambo campaign during the last general elections.

It was further  gathered that some of the vehicles that came into the campaign pool  as donations or purchased with party funds had already been distributed or returned to the owners while the vehicles  in question  were kept in Abuja in the custody of the former PS who facilitated the loan in readiness to be sold with a view to committing the proceeds to the repayment of the loan.

Contrary to claims that the vehicles were purchased with diverted public funds, it was reliably gathered that a loan of N1.8 billion was obtained on November 20, 2014 for the purchase of ‘luxury vehicles for VIP use’ with an extended repayment plan beginning from December 2016.

Further checks from documents cited at the headquarters of the  bank, in Lagos, revealed that Skye Bank released the loan in five tranches in line with the time invoices were produced by the suppliers.

A senior manager of Skye Bank who confirmed the loan stated that the bank had in statements made to EFCC September 2016, supplied all the evidences concerning the transactions to the anti-graft agency.

The official who pleaded anonymity because he was not officially permitted to speak emphasized that the loan processes followed all legitimate procedures, stressing that no default has been recorded yet, since the repayment was billed to start December 2016, “had EFCC not taken interest in the transactions.”

A high ranking member of the People’s Democratic party (PDP)  High chief Abel Odoko, wondered why EFCC would chose to opt for a “sensational media trial on a matter that was concluded many months ago.”

The chieftain who claimed to be very conversant with the case debunked the claim that” the sum of N1.5 billion with which the vehicles were acquired was allegedly sourced from the diverted N27 billion insurance premium of deceased workers of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN).”

The PDP chieftain said “first it was that the former permanent secretary took 40 government  SUVs for himself. After 24 hours its 45 or 47 and he bought them for Jonathan/Sambo Campaign. First, vehicle were parked in his house, now they are parked in a yard. If investigators are credible, why so much “confidential sources ” leaking out so much? Why the sudden massive media hype if it’s not sponsored witch hunting? Why always drag in the name of GEJ into everything negative?”

He wondered why despite the disclosure by the bank, from which the loan was taken, the government was silent on the transactions.

“Why are government officials silent on the fact that a loan was obtained and rather quoting other sources? Is the intention to scandalise specific  people for whatever reasons and achieve cheap political objectives? Is it professional  practice in investigations of this type to be releasing findings in bits without conclusions? Why has the minister of information suddenly become spokesman for EFCC?” the PDP source said.

According to him, EFCC came into the matter only after it discovered that Baseworth Insurance Brokers, a company the anti-graft agency had been investigating had also contributed N300 Million to the said loan which was co-ordinated by Skye bank. “It was only then that the agency insisted on recovering the money by taking possession of the vehicles to which no one objected.”

He said this was the settlement reached with the anti-graft agency about four months ago, “only for contrived stories scandalizing our party and former President Goodluck Jonathan  and people close to him to resurface in the media days before the new year.”

He added that the claim of a pending trial of ex-perm sec Igali was borne out of mischief, adding that “it does not arise because it has been clearly established that the vehicles were purchased with a bank loan.

“If EFCC is investigating any other matter, our party is not  against  it as long as due process and fairness is followed. The PDP as a party is not against President Buhari’s fight against corruption war. The PDP government believes in curtailing the scourge of corruption in the country that is why the government established the ICPC and the EFCC. We are fully in support of the anti-corruption war but it must be done in line with the principle of equity and without victimisation”.


Source: Abusidiq

Malabu Oil Deal: EFCC Launches Manhunt For Dan Etete.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has launched a manhunt for a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Dan Etete, who was charged with money laundering and fraud in Italy and Nigeria.

Sources within the EFCC told disclosed that the suspect, who was accused of perpetrating a $1.1bn fraud through his company, Malabu Oil & Gas Limited, had allegedly rendered himself incommunicado, making it difficult for the EFCC to serve him with court papers.

A senior detective at the EFCC said, “We have been trying to contact Etete, but from all indications, he seems to be on the run. Now that he has been charged in an Italian court, the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation will coordinate with the Italian government.

“We have transferred the Malabu fraud case to the AGF and he will decide on the next line of action. It is doubtful that he is in Nigeria, but we will continue to look for him.

“Since he is under investigation in the United Kingdom, Italy and the United States, he will not be able to hide. All the relevant security agencies will join hands in finding him.”

It was learnt that Etete’s alleged accomplice, Abubakar Aliyu, who the Italian authorities said was a front for former President Goodluck Jonathan, would face extradition hearing soon.

Aliyu, who is the Chairman of A.A Group, was declared wanted by Italian authorities. It, however, remains unclear if Jonathan will also be invited for questioning in Italy.

The Malabu scam, described as one of the most fraudulent oil deals in the world, involved the payment of $1.1bn by oil giants, Shell and Eni, to the Federal Government accounts in 2011 for OPL 245, said to hold reserves of about 9.23 billion barrels of oil.

The OPL 245 was alleged to have been bought by Etete under questionable circumstances in 1998 when he was the minister of petroleum. Etete was said to have bought it for a fraction of its actual value. However, the oil licence was revoked by the President Olusegun Obasanjo administration.

During the administration of Jonathan in 2011, the then AGF, Mohammed Adoke, brokered a deal for the sale of the same oil bloc, acting as a middleman between Shell and Eni on the one hand, and Etete’s company, Malabu, on the other hand.

Shell and Eni were said to have paid about $1.3bn for the OPL 245, which was paid into two escrow accounts owned by the Federal Government. However, Adoke was alleged to have transferred over $800m to Etete who, in turn, transferred over $500m to Aliyu, Jonathan’s alleged front.

Prosecutors in the UK had previously alleged that $523m of Shell and Eni’s payment went to alleged “fronts for former President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria” as part of a deal that was effectively a “smash and grab” on Nigeria.

The UK authorities froze $85m in Etete’s bank account while $170m was frozen in its Switzerland account.

Justice Edis of the Southwark Crown Court in London had, last year, described the Malabu scam as questionable, accusing Jonathan of not doing enough to protect the interest of Nigeria.

According to the judge, evidence from the US authorities presented to the court “shows payments following circuitous routes, which totaled $523m, and arrived at Abubakar Aliyu, aka ‘Mr. Corruption’… Aliyu’s companies are allegedly fronts for President Goodluck Jonathan.”

Justice Edis said, “The suggestion from the wiretaps is that ‘Fortunato’ was implicated and I am told that this was a reference in code (not subtle) to the former President of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan. Aliyu is said to be associated with him and Aliyu received, in a way which was not transparent, $523m of the money paid for the OPL 245 licence in August 2011.”

Should Etete and others be found guilty of fraud in Italy, they risk spending 12 years in jail.

Oil giants, Shell and Eni, as well as some executives of the companies, are set to be arraigned in a Milan court.

I have never collected bribe – JAMB Registrar

The Registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB, Is-haq Oloyede, has declared that he has never collected bribe from anyone.

Mr. Oloyede, who is also the immediate past Vice Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, made this disclosure while reacting to allegations of fraud levelled against him by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU.

The union had in a petition sent to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, accused Mr. Oloyede and the incumbent vice chancellor of the university, Abdulganiy Ambali, of fraud totalling more than N2 billion.

Other allegations levelled against the duo include pension fraud, unremitted deductions, extortion from students, contract inflation and kick-backs; as well as unlawful payments to
ex-principal officers of the university.

In his reaction, Mr. Oloyede denied all the allegations. The don said he has never taken bribe,
extorted anyone, inflated contracts nor accepted gifts from any contractor.

The JAMB registrar also maintained that he operated a transparent system within the period he served the university as vice chancellor.

“I am extremely selective in accepting gifts from even personal friends. My needs are limited and my legitimate income is sufficient to spend on my volunteer work,” the JAMB boss said.

“I have never in my life collected bribe, inflated contracts, extorted anyone nor accepted gifts beyond “Thank You greeting cards” from any contractor, dead or alive.”

Before his appointment as JAMB registrar, Mr. Oloyede served as vice chancellor of the University of Ilorin between 2008 and 2012.

Within the period, he served as Chairman of the Association of Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Universities, AVCNU; initiator of the Association of West Africa Universities, AWAU; President of the Association of African Universities, AAU; and Board member of the
Association of Commonwealth Universities, ACU as well as the International Association of Universities, IAU.

In August 2016, President Muhammadu Buhari appointed Mr. Oloyede the registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board, JAMB. He was appointed alongside sixteen other heads of parastatals and agencies under the Federal Ministry of Education.

In its reaction, the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, kicked against Mr. Oloyede’s appointment, stressing that the former vice chancellor should be probed. The union also alleged that Mr. Oloyede’s era as vice chancellor at the University of Ilorin was
characterized by anti-democratic and anti-union activities.

But in his response to the union’s petition sent to the EFCC on Thursday, Mr. Oloyede said that his response to the allegations was necessary because there is need to “thwart the Satanic objective of distracting me from the national assignment which they protested against but failed.”

The JAMB boss however called on the anti-graft agency, EFCC, to investigate the allegations and take necessary action after establishing the truthfulness of the case brought before it by the

Nigeria Yanks 50,000 Ghost Workers From Federal Payroll In 2016

Nigeria’s Federal government payroll has been rid of 50,000 ghost workers, saving the country N200 billion in the last 11 months.

Speaking with State House correspondents at an interactive meeting to mark the end the year, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, announced that 11 persons championing the syndicate of ghost workers have been handed over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

“The flagship program of the Muhammadu Buhari administration to rid the system of fraud and instill good governance is on course. Through a notable initiative, the Efficiency Unit of the Federal Ministry of Finance, the government has embarked on the continuous auditing of the salaries and wages of government departments.

“When the the Committee was constituted in February 2016, Federal government monthly salary bill was N151 billion excluding pensions. Now the monthly salary warrant is N138 billion, excluding pensions. Which means that the government is making a monthly saving of about N13 billion. That is from February 2016 to date,” he said.

The Presidential spokesman added that the “the pension bill was 15.5bn monthly as at February. Now it is down to N14.4 billion, which means average monthly saving is made of about N1.1 billion.”

He explained that the total number of ghost workers so far removed from the payroll is about 50,000 and that 11 persons championing the syndicate of the ghost workers have been referred to EFCC with some of them already undergoing trial.

Speaking on the welfare of the recently-released 21 Chibok Girls, Malam Garba said they are being treated as adoptees of the Federal Government but revealed that there is a lot of local and international interest in the future plans of the girls.

“A black American billionaire, Mr. Robert Smith who is currently sponsoring the education of 24 girls from Chibok, among them the first set set of escapees from Boko Haram at the American University of Nigeria, Yola has offered to pay for the education of the 21 released through negotiations and is offering to take responsibility for all the others who will hopefully be eventually set free. The Murtala Mohammed Foundation in the country is equally interested,” according to the the Presidential spokesman.

Responding to complaints by some of the parents of the 21 Chibok Girls that they did not have enough room for interaction with their daughters brought home for Christmas by the Department of State Services, DSS the Senior Special Assistant to the President admitted that there were some hitches arising from a lack of understanding of the objective of the trip on the part of some security operatives but that following the receipt of this complaint, a directive has been given from the headquarters for the access by the parents to be eased. “If the situation persists, pls let us know so that the higher authorities will make a further intercession,” he assured.

Addressing an issue of interest to a lot of the members of the governing party, the All Progressives Congress, APC concerning appointments into boards, Malam Garba assured that the process will be be fully back on track at the beginning of the new year.

“You know that the reconstitution began methodically, from sector by sector. You should expect that to resume at the beginning of the new year. The President has given directions on what to do,” according to him.

On the agricultural programs of the administration, Malam Garba said that the President’s persistent calls for a return to farming is yielding good results. “The talk about agriculture has driven people to the farm. This year, there is a huge boom in the rural economy. We have witnessed an excellent harvest. Farmers are getting value for their output. What has encouraged farmers the more is the increasing availability of extension services. New farming techniques are helping farmers to do their occupation better. The readiness of off takers to buy the produce is also a major boost.

“When you put all these together with the systematic move to curb importation as a boost local production through the restriction of the available foreign exchange to critically important sectors of the economy, you have favorable environment for the diversification of the economy.

“As we speak, several of the country’s major manufacturing industries are actively backward-integrating- Nestle, Unilever, the breweries are looking what we have as local materials, changing their formulations to maintain production levels and keep their share of the market. Manufacturers who are hooked on import of raw materials are advised to re-strategize and take full advantage of local raw materials. The future belongs to those who employ the use of local raw materials,” concluded the spokesman.

Probe ‘missing’ N500 million Chibok school fund, SERAP tells EFCC

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, SERAP, has petitioned Ibrahim Magu, the Chairman Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, requesting him to “urgently begin a thorough, transparent and effective investigation into allegation that N500 million Safe School funds for Chibok girls, commissioned by former Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, to rebuild the Government Girls School in Chibok, is missing and cannot be accounted for.”

The organisation urged the EFCC to “invite for questioning, and name and shame anyone suspected to be involved in the alleged diversion, including the contractors allegedly handling the project.”

In the petition dated December 27, 2016 and signed by SERAP senior staff attorney Timothy Adewale, the organisation said: “The allegation that N500m has been lost to corruption has resulted in denying the girls access to education, and shows the failure of the former President Goodluck Jonathan government to live up to Nigeria’s commitments under the global Safe School Declaration.”

The petition reads in part: “SERAP believes that the diversion of the funds will expose the school to attacks in the future. This is a fundamental breach of the country’s obligations including guarantees of non-repetition, which contribute to prevention and deterrence of future attacks.”

“SERAP urges the EFCC to work with the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) to set up a mechanism to monitor government’s spending of the safe school funds in order to ensure that the funds are spent exactly to prevent and deter future attacks, and to allow the girls to go back to school as soon as possible.”

“SERAP is seriously concerned that the school has remained in a state of disrepair since the abduction of the girls, and students have remained at home.”

“SERAP is concerned that the alleged diversion of N500 million meant for reconstruction of Government Girls School in Chibok has directly violated the right to education of the girls, as guaranteed under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights to which Nigeria is a state party.”

“The diversion has undermined the obligation of the government to take step to the maximum of its available resources to achieve the right to education. The alleged diversion also shows a serious breach of anticorruption legislation including the EFCC Act, and Nigeria’s international obligations under the UN Convention against Corruption and the African Union Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption both of which the country has ratified.”

“The EFCC should ensure full accountability and bring to justice anyone found to be responsible for corruption and diversion of safe school funds. The EFCC should also ensure that all proceeds of corruption are recovered and returned back to the treasury.”

“This request is based on allegation by Governor Kashim Shettima that N500 million set aside by the government of former President Goodluck Jonathan, is missing and cannot be accounted for. The funds were released for rebuilding of the Government Girls School in Chibok under the Safe School Initiative programme, which was commissioned former Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.”

BREAKING: Patience Jonathan’s Multiple Bank Accounts Frozen By Federal High Court

A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has given an order that an account operated by former first lady, Mrs. Patience Jonathan, be frozen on the ground that it contains suspected proceeds of crime. The account, domiciled with Skye Bank plc, has a balance of $5,316.66.

Also affected by the order are five companies and one Esther Oba. The companies collectively have balances totaling N7,418,829,290.94 (seven billion four hundred and eighteen million eight hundred and twenty nine thousand two hundred and ninety naira ninety four kobo) in six commercial banks, while Esther Obafo has a balance of $429,381.87.

The court order was sequel to a further affidavit in support of Ex-parte originating summons sworn to by Mr. Abdulahi Tukur, an operative of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), and filed before the court by EFCC prosecutor, Rotimi Oyedepo.     Mr. Tukur averred that there is an urgent need for the court to direct the managers of the bank accounts contained in the schedule filed with the summons (FHC/L/CS/1343/16) to, in the interim, forfeit the money in the accounts, to prevent further tampering with such.

The five companies affected are Finchley Top Homes Limited, Aribawa Aruera, Magel Resort Limited, AM -PM Global Network Limited Pansy Oil and Gas Limited.

Finchley Top Homes Limited is alleged to have fraudulently open account number 1102001996 domiciled with Ecobank Plc and has a current balance of N226,376,700.23 and a fixed deposit with a balance of N1,099,511,484.88.

The company also fraudulently opened other accounts These are account 1771731336, domiciled with Skye Bank and with a current balance of N14,173,848.85; Fidelity Bank account 4011019539  with a current balance of N1,800,494,000; Stanbic Bank account 0016901361 with a current balance of N40,594,12.88; and Diamond Bank account 0019213687 with a current balance of N39,418,712.12.

Aribawa Aruera Reachout Foundation opened account number 1222014221 with Ecobank and has a closing balance of N479,893,431.01, while Magel Resort Limited accounts (4011019546/5250059782) with Fidelity Bank has a subsisting balance of N1,000,494,000.

The company also operates two other accounts (1011744356) in Zenith Bank, which has a balance of N858,923,982, and 0024351590 with Diamond Bank and has a balance of N174,166,207.00.

AM-PM Global Network Limited opened account number 0026718889 at Diamond Bank and has a balance of N7,213,303.50.

The account opened by Pansy Oil and Gas Limited at Fidelity Bank (4011019577) has a current balance of N1,809,666,494.68, while that at Diamond Bank (0026838491) has a balance of N55,930,024.50.

Esther Oba was found to have opened account number 0019213689 with Diamond Bank and has a current balance of $429,381.87.

All the monies are suspected to be proceeds of crime.

Upon the receipt of an intelligence report, the EFCC said it carried out analyses, which showed that the accounts merited being investigated. As such, Mr.  Tukur averred that it would serve the course of justice to grant the application for such.

The presiding judge, Justice Mojisola Olatoregun, while granting the order freezing the accounts listed, ordered the anti-graft agency to file an undertaking in relation to damages payable by it if it turns out that the order should not have been made.


Source: Sahara Reporters

Opinion: Time to scrap the EFCC – By Jideofor Adibe

This piece was motivated by two interrelated developments: the first is the furore caused by several corruption allegations against some top officials of the Buhari government and the reported directive by the President to the Attorney General of the Federation to investigate the involvement of any top government official accused of any wrong-doing. The corruption allegations against top officials of the government coupled with similar allegations against some members of the National Assembly would seem to suggest that despite the government’s anti-corruption postures and rhetoric, corruption, or at least allegations of it, still thrive as in any other past regime.

The second impetus is the refusal of the Senate to consider approving Ibrahim Magu as the substantive chairman of the financial crimes buster, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) ostensibly because he failed the requisite integrity test. The development has triggered a media war between supporters of Magu and his traducers in which the issue is unfortunately reduced to the simplistic binary of the ‘good guys’ versus the ‘bad guys’. Here the ‘good guys’ are assumed to be those who want Magu’s nomination to be approved because he has “demonstrated good track record in fighting corruption” while the ‘bad guys’ are those opposed to his confirmation and therefore represent “corruption fighting back”.

I believe that rather than dissipate energy on whether Magu should be confirmed as the EFCC chairman or not- we should be posing the more relevant question of whether the EFCC is succeeding or not in the fight against corruption or whether it is exacerbating the problem of corruption by undermining, through its style, the evolution of institution- driven methods of fighting the ailment.

At this stage I believe it will be germane to come clean: I have never been a fan of the EFCC. In fact in a feature for the blog Nigeria Village Square (www.nigeriavillagesquare.com) on January 8 2009 entitled, “War on Corruption: Why EFCC Will Fail”, I wrote: “A major reason why the EFCC is likely to fail is that it is using exactly the same strategies employed by previous regimes and agencies – treating corruption as a moral lapse rather than a systemic problem.” I further argued that “corruption is a systemic problem, which is tied to the success or failure of the nation-building project, the level of poverty in the land, and the extent to which citizens believe they are valued as stakeholders in the state. Therefore fighting the malfeasance by a segment of the society for an ill that is generalized and expressed in different forms is unlikely to solve the problem of corruption.” I have over the years written several other articles critical of the EFCC. From about 2012 I began calling for the granting of conditional amnesty against all accused of corruption because I felt the whole ‘war’ was a charade that had not achieved its aim. In fact EFCC’s ‘gra-gra’ method compounds the blurring of the boundary between the supposed fight against corruption and political vendetta.

But this blurred boundary is actually rooted in the country’s political history: For instance one of the earliest attempts to use charges of corruption to smear political opponents was in 1946 after the NCNC raised £13,000 from its well-publicised tour of the provinces (April 1946 to December 1946) to send a delegation of seven people to London to protest against the Richard’s Constitution, and its ‘four obnoxious ordinances’. The delegation left for London in June 1947 and returned two months later. Though it was welcomed by an enthusiastic crowd of over 100,000, the initial euphoria was quickly overshadowed by insinuations of corruption. For instance the government-owned Daily Times, in its editorial of August 15, 1947, led the charge: “We would like to remind the delegation that what has been achieved could have been obtained in Nigeria by airmail at the very modest cost of one shilling, whereas the delegation has been ever so expensive. If therefore this is the sort of unthinking and wasteful leadership being thrust on us, we will have none of it”.

With the EFCC suspected to be the attack dog of any government in power since Obasanjo set it up in 2003, it has had the problem of legitimacy across the political divides amid accusations of selective targeting of the opposition and opponents of the President.
Another reason why I have not been a fan of the EFCC and its methods is that there is nothing to suggest that it is succeeding in the fight against corruption – despite its ‘gra-gra’. Methodologically, the best way of assessing the impact of the EFCC in the fight against corruption is to use the ‘before’ and ‘after’ benchmarks – that is, to pose the question: what was the situation before the EFCC was set up and what is the situation now?

Procedural issues like how much money it succeeded in confiscating or the number of convictions it secured are really mere details. The key question is: Has the incidence of corruption reduced since the inception of EFCC? If, as anecdotal evidence suggests (and from what succeeding governments tell us of their predecessors in office) the malaise seems to be rather increasing, one needs no further evidence to conclude that the EFCC and similar institutions used in fighting corruption in the past simply have failed. In the current situation where the structural and environmental factors that predispose people to corrupt practices are increasing, it makes it even more difficult for the EFCC to succeed. The EFCC, like the other contraptions before it, seems to spend too much energy fighting the symptoms of what is a more fundamental social malaise. That each chairman of the Commission since it was created ended up from being a hunter to the hunted and also has allegations of corruption against him or her, tells volumes.

An interesting question is why Nigerians seem to be fascinated with the EFCC and its methods despite lack of evidence that its succeeding. There are several possible explanations:
One, is that Nigerians like to behave like ostriches. Everyone pretends to be a sort of angel fighting corruption. This includes all sorts of shady characters such as professional conmen and the opportunistic car mechanics who will quickly exchange your new car battery for an old one if you step aside to answer a phone call.

Two, a society emerging from recent dictatorship seems to retain certain authoritarian impulses. For this, the EFCC’s strong arm tactics, which is sometimes short on finesse and rule of law (witness the impunity perpetrated by Ribadu during Obasanjo’s term in the name of fighting corruption) appeal to some who erroneously mistake ‘authoritarian dispositions’ for ‘strong leadership’.

Three, the EFCC’s, ‘naming and shaming’ of the ‘high and the mighty’ and the accompanying media trial taps into Nigerians’ distrust of the justice system. EFCC appears to have a strategy of ‘bypassing the courts’ and taking their cases directly to the courts of public opinion. In a country where the justice system is seen to be anything but blind and its wheels turn very sluggishly, some Nigerians express their distrust of such justice system by embracing the alternative ‘justice system’ of media trial. It is also very appealing to those baying for the blood of people they regard as their class, ethnic, religious and regional enemies.

Largely because of the above, rather than join in the fruitless discourse of whether Magu should be confirmed or not, I feel the conversation ought to be about the EFCC as an institution. I feel we should seriously consider scrapping the EFCC and strengthening instead the various institutions and mechanisms we find in the formal sectors of our national life that are meant to checkmate abuses and impunity. My feeling is that the EFCC undermines the development of such systems and mechanisms by making people believe that ‘gra-gra’ is the only method of fighting corruption. The truth is that a system can be very unobtrusive but effective as we have in the mature democracies. We need therefore to re-set the whole fight against corruption such that it will be institution-driven and without the ‘gra-gra’ from contraptions like the EFCC.

Managing the politics of fighting corruption using the failed systems of the past in a society like ours is probably one of the reasons why many corruption cases get stalled in the courts. Harassing judges to get more convictions is also not the way to go. It is better for hundred criminals to go free than for one innocent citizen to be erroneously convicted. While securing convictions is important, it is even more important to pose and answer the question of why the incidence of corruption and corrupt practices are not abating despite the EFCC and similar institutions.
The author tweets @JideoforAdibe

Is Magu Nigeria’s Most Dangerous Man? – By Azu Ishiekwene

It’s not a surprise that some folks are finally twisting the knife in the back of the acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Magu. After working without a letter of appointment for one year and overstaying his confirmation by nearly six months, his current travails should not come as a surprise.

It’s now official. The Directorate of State Security said in a letter carefully released at the Senate committee December 10 confirmation hearing that Magu is Nigeria’s most dangerous man. The DSS could therefore not recommend him for clearing.

OK, the DSS letter didn’t put it exactly that way – it said there was evidence from eight years ago that Magu took official files home; that he fiddled with recovered assets sometime in his earlier life; that his friend, an air force officer, who is currently under investigation, paid twice the value of his house rent for him and furnished it; that he flies around with suspects under investigation; and that he even flies first class, against the rules.
With the leadership of the Senate facing corruption trial, the DSS letter was exactly the Christmas present that the lawmakers had been praying for. So when Santa Claus delivered it to the Senate committee, the matter did not even go to the whole house, as required by law, before Magu was rejected.

This curious episode reminds me of two things – an aphorism and a story. Lavrenti Beria, the former head of Joseph Stalin’s KGB loved his job to death and was always eager to show his boss. Whenever he thought Stalin had difficulties finding a reason to eliminate any of his foes, Lavrenti would go to him quietly and whisper, “show me the man and I will find the crime.”

In his one year doing one of Nigeria’s most difficult jobs, Magu has stepped on so many toes that finding a crime to hang him shouldn’t need a Lavrenti.

The DSS is doing a damn good job of it in Magu’s case.
When former President Mwai Kibaki started the war against corruption in Kenya, those who wanted it to fail did more than using aphorisms to fight against John Githongo, the anti-corruption czar at the time.

According to Michela Wrong in her book, “Our turn to eat,” at first, they ignored Githongo. When he seemed to be getting uncomfortably close to the thieves, who were mostly insiders, they tried to shoo him away. He persisted and sank his teeth into one of Kenya’s biggest scandals – the $1billion Anglo Leasing case. At that point, the backlash became nasty.

They called him a stooge of the Oyinbo man, especially the donor countries, and to incite the public against him, said he was gay and a traitor to his tribe. They sent stalkers after Githongo and threatened him directly. When he refused to back down, they went after his family.

They suddenly remembered a loan taken by his father who had an accounting firm under former President Jomo Kenyatta and reminded John that his father had not finished paying up. “The minister of Justice was telling me that if I eased off my enquiries, then my father’s loan matter would be made to go away,” Githongo said.
Corruption did not relent until Githongo fled for his life.

Those after Magu don’t want him to flee, not yet. If, like Lavrenti, they can find the crime for the man – scraps of files from the Waziri Farida days or ice cream toppings from his air force friend – that humiliation alone should be enough to humble and bring him back to line. If they can’t break him, they’re determined to mar him.
By all means, Magu should answer his query. And I hope that the full details of the DSS report against him, the Justice minister’s query, and Magu’s response would be released to the public.

Except if there’s something the public does not know, no public officer at Magu’s level is appointed without some basic form of security screening. It is strange that the DSS waited one year after Magu’s appointment to advise the president that he is unfit for office because he took some files home in 2008. Didn’t they know that before he assumed office one year ago?

As for the claim that he lives in a house paid for at twice the market price by his air force friend, who has been interrogated by the DSS and charged to court, that is wrong, if it’s true. But why was this claim not part of the DSS charge in court against the air force officer?

And where does this allegation leave the public in light of the story by Premium Times – with supporting documents – that the Abuja Municipal Management Council actually paid for Magu’s house and furnished it? Or was the house paid for twice?

The Senate has tried to give the impression that its main concern is to ensure that the man who is confirmed in the EFCC chair is above board. Yet, we can smell mischief. In his one year in office Magu has shown a commitment to work and independent-mindedness that have proved to be a major headache for politicians, their powerful cronies and insiders who would rather have a puppet in that office.

The war on corruption may still have its rough edges, but Magu has pursued a number of those who pocketed public funds and forced them to pay. He has worked with other institutions to tighten financial controls and plug leakages through which the country was losing billions of naira yearly.

All of this of course will be music in the ear of many politicians, as long as Magu is not coming after them or their cronies. With many of them already warming up for 2019, they are concerned that, at this pace, the anti-corruption war may upend their political ambition.

Magu has shown from his devotion and courage that he is a clear and present danger to a number of ambitious politicians and their friends who were used to easy passes. That’s why they want to stop him.

Acting appointments belong to the Stone Age. Appointments requiring Senate or any other statutory confirmation should precede assumption of office. Once a man takes a job he should be judged by his performance.

He should not be hostage to the selfish and narrow interests of those who would exploit an administrative leverage just to get even.

Politicians want to fight corruption; that is what they say. What is coming out of Magu’s confirmation hearing is that they want to fight corruption on their own terms.
No deal.

Malabu Oil Scam: “I’ll make myself available for trial”, says Adoke.

Mohammed Adoke, former attorney-general of the federation (AGF), says he will defend himself against the allegations of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over his alleged role in the Malabu oil scam.

Adoke is accused of receiving over $800 million from the federation account as his benefit from the deal.

But in a statement, Adoke said the money laundering charge preferred against him by the EFCC was an attempt to “bring me to public disrepute in order to satisfy the whims and caprices of some powerful interests on revenge mission”.

He said he acted on the authority of former President Goodluck Jonathan to broker a settlement between Malabu Oil & Gas Limited and Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited.

“My attention has been drawn to the charges filed by the EFCC against me and other named individuals and companies in respect of OPL 245 Settlement Agreement involving Malabu Oil & Gas Limited and Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited,” he said.

“I wish to reiterate that I acted within the actual and ostensible authority of the office I occupied to broker a settlement between Malabu Oil & Gas Limited and Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited in order to ward off the over US$2 Billion Dollars liability in damages for breach of contract which the country would have been exposed to in the likely event of the success of Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited’s claim before the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).

“The terms of settlement ensured that the interests of the federal government of Nigeria, Malabu Oil & Gas Limited and Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited were duly acknowledged and provided for in the settlement agreement.

“The federal government of Nigeria was entitled to the signature bonus which was duly paid; Malabu Oil & Gas Limited surrendered its title to OPL 245 for a consideration and Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited was re-allocated OPL 245 which its had previously substantially de-risked in consideration for withdrawing their over US$ 2 billion dollars claim for breach of contract against the federal government of Nigeria.

“Since the parties aforementioned, faithfully discharged their respective obligations under the settlement agreement, one cannot comprehend how the office of the attorney-general of the federation which brokered the settlement was expected to renege from the agreement by denying Malabu Oil & Gas Limited the benefits associated with the relinquishing of their title to OPL 245 already warehoused in a joint FGN/Shell Escrow account, or to prevent the subsequent re-allocation of the relinquished OPL 245 to Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited when the company  had already furnished consideration for it to the Federal Government of Nigeria.”

He denied benefiting from the settlement agreement between Malabu Oil & Gas Limited and Shell Nigeria Ultra Deep Limited in OPL 245.

“I did not take any benefit from it, I had requisite approvals from the president and commander in chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to broker the settlement and execute the OPL 245 settlement agreement,” he said.

“I am therefore unable to rationalise the charge of aiding the commission of money laundering offences preferred against me by the EFCC.  But be that as it may, I hope to at the appropriate time make myself available to defend the charge for what whatever its worth.”

Alleged N1.219 Billion Fraud Trial: Fayose’s Aide Plotting to Abscond – EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has alleged that Abiodun Agbele, an aide of Ekiti State Governor Ayodele Fayose, was plotting to abscond from his ongoing trial.

Agbele is being tried with three firms – Sylvan Macnamara Ltd, De Privateer Ltd and Spotless Ltd – on 11 counts of money laundering, involving about N4,685,723,000 allegedly taken by former National Security Adviser (NSA) from the account of the office of the NSA domicile in the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

The prosecution alleged that Agbele and others knew that the N4,685,723,000 formed part of the proceeds of alleged unlawful activities by Dasuki.

The prosecution claimed that on June 17, 2014, Agbele, Obanikoro and other suspects (said to be at large) took N1,219,000,000 from the total N4,685,723,000, when they “reasonably ought to have known” that the money was part of proceeds of Dasuki’s unlawful activity”.

The EFCC’s fresh allegation of Agbele’s alleged plot to abscond was contained in a notice of appeal it filed against a December 5, 2016 ruling of Justice Nnamdi Dimgba of the Federal High Court, Abuja.

Agbele and others are being tried before Justice Dimgba, who earlier granted Agbele bail and ordered him to, among others, deposit his international passport with the court as part of the condition for bail.

Agbele, however, applied to the court for the release of his passport to enable him travel abroad on medical ground, an application Justice Dimgba granted in his December 5 ruling.

In the notice of appeal, filed before the Court of Appeal, Abuja by EFCC’s lawyer, Wahab Shittu, it was alleged that having been aware of the enormity of the case against him, with the commencement of trial, Agbele may not return to continue his trial.

“There are sufficient materials in the proof of evidence before the trial court confirming that the 1st respondent (Agbele) took custody of N1.219 billion, forming the subject matter of the case and providing sufficient ground for the 1st respondent to abscond from the on-going trial process.

“There is no undertaking provided by the 1ts respondent or his counsel to the effect that the 1st respondent will return to the country before the next adjourned dates of January 25 – 27, 2017.

“The allegations levelled against the 1st respondent are weighty, bordering on alleged corrupt practices running into billions of naira.

“There are sufficient materials before the court revealing that the 1st respondent may not return to the country to face his trial. Not less than 20 witnesses have been lined up, ready to give evidence against the 1st respondent.

“Trial has already commenced in the proceedings against the 1st respondent and others, which trial may be truncated permanently should the 1st respondent absconds from the trial by failing to return to the country.

“A consideration for the entire circumstances of the case, including the huge sums of money involved, including extra-judicial statements of the 1st respondent in the proof of evidence before the trial court, acknowledging receipt of the sum of N1.219 billion ought to have dictated the refusal of the 1st respondent’ application for the release of his international passport by the trial court,” the EFCC said.

He, therefore, urged the Appeal Court to set aside the December 5 order by Justice Dimgba allowing the release of Agbele’s passport.

No date is given yet by the appellate court for the hearing of the appeal.


Source : Nigerian Eye

Senate overrules Ndume’s stance on Magu, insists he’s not ‘clean’ enough to run EFCC

The Senate yesterday affirmed its rejection of the nomination of Ibrahim Magu as chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) based on the damning security reports against him.

By the assertion, the Upper Legislative Chamber nullified the claim by its Majority Leader, Muhammed Ali Ndume at the Presidential Villa on Monday that the Senate had not rejected Magu’s nomination.

After five months of intrigues, wit games and serious political manipulations among the powers that be in the Presidency and the National Assembly, the nomination of Magu was rejected by the Senate last Thursday.

Abdullahi stated that although Ndume is the Senate Majority Leader, he could not speak for the chamber as the two responsibilities are quite different.

“The call to national duty is crucial. So I am here based on a series of calls and text messages from you about what you thought are conflicting messages. It has become critical for the senate to clarify issues. The eighth Senate believes in its integrity; we uphold and promote the rule of law which is the basic thing about our democracy. We are committed to doing things differently to stabilise the polity in the collective interest of Nigerians.

“I would like to make the following clarifications: I’m holding the votes and proceeding of Thursday. We had two votes and proceeding because we had to go into a joint session to receive Buhari.

Our votes and proceedings are the official records of what transpired in the chamber. I briefed you on Thursday to the effect that the senate was announcing that in view of security reports, we were unable to confirm Magu. We then rejected and returned the nomination to Buhari for further action.

“Media reports emerging, especially from interviews granted by Senator Ndume meant that we have to clarify issues. For the records, I am the official spokesman of the Senate and I intend to discharge this with honour and integrity because the sanctity of the institution is crucial to the sustenance of democracy.

“I have only one point of reference, which is, the votes and proceedings. The Senate deliberated on the nomination of Magu for the position of EFCC chairman with regard to security report available, but referred the other nominees for screening since nothing much was found about them.

“This is the only official position of the Senate. What I say, I say on behalf of the senate. Nigerians should be guided. There is no ambiguity in what we said,” Abdullahi declared.

According to him, “ The Senate is an institution and we are working with the Constitution, and whatever rules we use are drawn from the constitution. We also want the media to be guided in the matter because of some misleading news in the public domain.”

The Senate spokesman said that “even with respect to the indictment of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), the genesis was the motion raised by Kaka and Ndume and the Senate decided to take a look at the abuses and the SGF was found to be part of the abuses.”

He said the Senate considered the only security report submitted to it and took its decision, pointing out that the Senate was not aware of any other report.

“As a routine, when you have a nominee, a security report should be given. The report we are talking about was sent to the Acting Clerk of the Senate. If you talk about two reports which one is the second one? I heard a report was sent to Ita Enag (the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters) but I am not holding brief for him. He is a liaison officer and if there is any communication, Saraki or the clerk is in charge.

“It will be unfortunate for anyone to say that the Senate will be subjected to a report sent to the liaison office.

“I am God’s anointed, come at me at your own peril”, Fayose tells EFCC.

Ayodele Fayose, governor of Ekiti state, has described himself as “God’s anointed”, warning the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to come after him at its peril.

Fayose said as things are currently, the anti-graft agency cannot prosecute any meaningful fight against corruption.

“If they have studied me very well, they would have stopped running after God’s anointed,” read a statement issued on Fayose’s behalf by Lere Olayinka, his spokesman.

“The more they run after me, the more they hit their heads on the Rock of Ages and get themselves fatally injured.”

He also commended the judiciary for “standing firm against the EFCC’s tyranny”, saying the way and manner the commission had been going about “shopping” for court orders against Nigerians should concern lovers of rule of law in the country.

Fayose expressed delight over the court order that asked EFCC to release all his property.

“It is the height of irresponsibility and fraud for the EFCC to have approached Justice Okon Abang for a similar order and concealed the fact that the order obtained from Justice Dimgba elapsed on September 3 and had failed to approach the same court for an extension.”

“The EFCC and its corrupt elements fraudulently approached Justice Abang, knowing that the judge himself is fraudulent as established by the court of appeal and the same EFCC has even moved to the Federal High Court, Akure in search of another order, ostensibly because they have realised that the judge in the Federal High Court, Ado Ekiti won’t play ball.

“Justice Dimgba gave interim orders on July 20, and reaffirmed on August 3, and the orders were made to last for 45 days to enable EFCC carry out its investigations. Instead of going back to the same court, the EFCC ran to Justice Abang, a judge already adjudged to be fraudulent by the Appeal Court to obtain another order.

“Should we now say that 45 days was inadequate for the any meaningful investigation to be carried out by the EFCC if indeed the commission was interested in investigating anything? Didn’t EFCC carry out its investigation before going to court to seek order to seize the property?

“The EFCC and its collaborators should stop running after me as if I am the only reason they were employed. They should keep their gun powder dry and wait till the end of my tenure, and I can assure them that they will be defeated as I have always done, that is if they are still around then.”

BREAKING: Malabu $1.1 billion: EFCC files fraud charges against Adoke, Etete, Aliyu

The anti-graft EFCC has filed fraud charges against Nigeria’s former Attorney-General, Mohammed Adoke; a former petroleum minister, Dan Etete; and a controversial businessman, Abubakar Aliyu, and others for their roles in the ?Malabu $1.1 billion shady deal.


The 9-count charge was filed at the Federal High Court, Abuja on Tuesday, sources at the EFCC told PREMIUM TIMES.


PREMIUM TIMES had reported how Mr. Adoke and former finance minister , Yerima Ngama, approved the transfer of about $1.1 billion into Nigerian accounts controlled by Mr. Etete.

Dan Etete
Dan Etete


The money was paid by oil giants, Shell and ENI, ?into a federal government account, for OPL 245, considered the richest oil bloc in Africa.


After the transfer to Mr. Etete, over half of the money was paid to accounts of shady companie?s controlled by Mr. Aliyu.


Although Mr. Adoke has repeatedly claimed he did no wrong, investigations by authorities in Nigeria, UK, and Italy have found him culpable in the scandal.


More details later…

Senator Wabara calls for resignation of Magu, Lawal.

The Former President of the Senate, Sen. Adolphus Wabara, has called on the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Ibrahim Magu, to resign his appointment following indicting security reports about him. Wabara. who made the call in an interview on Monday in Abuja, also called for the resignation of on the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Babachir Lawal.
The Senate had called for the resignation of Lawal for his alleged involvement in diversion of funds meant for humanitarian services in the North-East. Wabara urged the duo to resign on moral grounds, adding that it didn’t matter if the allegations against them were proved or not. “They should go.
When Obasanjo alleged corruption matter against me I resigned, I resigned to face it. So I mean you resign. Magu and Babachir “Whatever position anybody is occupying is not his father’s position. If there is a moral issue, it doesn’t even have to be proven.
You give way to fight it. “One thing is very clear, it is not witch-hunting. If it is happening to a senator, Nigerians will say yes go ahead and do it but this reports are coming from outside of Senate. “ They did not go there to write or originate the reports and it is their right, it is the right of the Senate to work on any report that they receive judiciously. “What is constituency project when you have very damning and damaging report against the SGF. It is for them to investigate and determine the veracity of that report.
“If the report is really against the SGF, for moral reasons he should go,’’ he said. On whether or not the recent development was a witch-hunt on the part of the lawmakers against Magu, Wabara said the Senate had powers to carry out its responsibilities for the sustenance of democracy. “The Senate has every power to confirm or not to confirm. In this case it is not now a senate problem, or senate issue.
There were security reports from outside the senate for the consideration of the senate. “There were security reports that they received that led to what happened. So, I don’t want to blame the senate. “The senate did not originate the security report on Magu, Magu is a very amiable character but if you as a journalist should go into the authenticity of the reason and the report that the senate received, they did not originate it. “If they had originated it would have been a different ball game.
They had to work with the reports and they took that decision,’’ he said. On the fight against corruption, the former president of the senate said it was not holistic. According to him, “I think the administration is fighting corruption unfortunately it looks as it is about just one man that is doing that. “To me the only man fighting corruption is only the president.’’ In a similar development, the former Deputy Governor of Plateau State, Mrs Pauline Tallen, told NAN that anybody found wanting should be brought to book.
“Whatever are the issues surrounding the non-confirmation of the Acting Chairman, by the grace of God it will be resolved between the Presidency and the National Assembly. “So, I don’t think people should break their heads over this issue, it will soon be resolved by the grace of God.
“If one is found guilty on anything concerning corruption he should face the music, once the facts are there, nobody should be above the law,’’ she said. The Senate had rejected the nomination of Magu as Substantive Chairman of the EFCC over indicting security reports.

SEC to intensify effort to curb market infractions

Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is working on a Memorandun of Understanding, MoU, with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to curb market infractions by operators. File photo: The floor of Stock exchange The Commission also reaffirmed its commitment to provide an efficient and effective policing of the Nigerian capital market.
Director General of SEC, Mounir Gwarzo, stated this when the Management of the Commission paid a visit to the Acting Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, weekend in Abuja. Gwarzo disclosed that there has been a close relationship between SEC and EFCC adding that the Commission cannot discharge its responsibilities effectively without collaborating with the anti graft agency.
He said “We are by provision of our law mandated to protect investors on developing the market but the way our law is structured we have limitations over criminal cases and that is why in the last 10 years there has been a very great collaboration between both agencies.
“We hope that when his MoU becomes fully operational it will assist in reducing market infractions to the barest minimum” Gwarzo remarked that the collaboration with the EFCC has been of tremendous benefit to the SEC especially in areas of investigation and enforcement adding that effective policing of the market is one of the ways of retiring investor confidence.
“One of our agenda is to bring back the retail investors to the market and there is no way they will agree to return if they are not sure of the safety of their investments” the DG stated. Responding, Magu expressed delight that the collaboration between both agencies has yielded enormous benefit for the growth of the capital market adding that his agency will continue to provide assistance where required.
Magu said the EFCC has been instrumental in investigating several cases of fraud in the capital market and recovered funds which were returned to investors and assured the SEC of the agency’s continued support.

Magu’s rejection won’t come from us, says senate leader.

Ali Ndume, majority leader of the senate, says the upper chamber of the national assembly has not rejected Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Addressing state house correspondents on Monday, Ndume said even if Magu will be rejected, it would not come from the red chamber. He explained that Magu’s confirmation was put on hold because of a security report from the Department of State Services (DSS).

Ndume said the senate was awaiting the advice of President Muhammadu Buhari on the issue.

“Let me say categorically that the senate did not reject Ibrahim Magu. What happened was that when we selected his confirmation for Thursday, we had an issue or a letter from the Department of State Security (DSS) that could not allow us to continue with the confirmation without further clarifications,” he said.

“So, we now concluded that since we had a letter that we could not ignore. So, it was not that we sat down to take a decision that we had rejected Magu. So, I want that to come out clearly.

“We specifically asked the chairman on media to issue a statement. What we said was that on that Thursday the senate could not go ahead with the confirmation of Mr. Ibrahim Magu and that we are in possession of a letter from the Department of State Service which requires clarification from Mr. President, who is the head of the government. That was what happened.

“Even if the rejection is going to come, it is not going to come from the senate because we have not done anything anyway.”

Back then, Aliyu Abdullahi, spokesman of the senate, had categorically said the nomination of the anti-graft czar was rejected.

“The nomination of Ibrahim Magu is hereby rejected and has been returned to the President for further action,” he had said.?

?Reminded of this, Ndume said: “I hope we are not arguing. I listened and I still listened because of this controversy that can come out.

“I’m part of the persons that wrote the short press statement which stated that the senate could not continue with the confirmation. It is different from saying that the senate rejected him. In fact, we have referred the other four to the committee.”

?On the demand for Babchir Lawal, secretary to the government of the federation (SGF), to step down and face prosecution, Ndume said the senate said the lawmakers only made a recommendation and did not issue an order.

While deliberating on the report of an ad hoc committee set up to look into the plight of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the north-east, the senate indicted Lawal for allegedly abusing his office by misappropriating funds.

But Ndume said since there had been reports that Lawal was not given fair hearing, the senate would give him the opportunity to clear himself.

“The senate resolution is a recommendation, it’s not a law. What the senate considered is work in progress because it was an interim report,” he said.

“The public is interested in knowing what we as a senate had done about those allegations. The committee issued an interim report and the interim report seemed to indict the SGF, the consequences of that indictment are what they recommended, but we are not there yet because the report itself is interim. Ok, we take the interim report, we give the public until the whole investigation is concluded.

“I hear, coming from the SGF that he has not been given a fair hearing, so the hearing has not finished. We can give him an ample of time to go before the committee and clear himself.”?

Premium Times: Why SSS wrote separate reports to Presidency, Senate on Magu.

The actual trigger for the State Security Service (SSS) to have written the report upon which the Senate rejected Ibrahim Magu’s nomination for the top job at the anti-graft EFCC has been uncovered.

At a hurriedly arranged press conference about the same time the Senate was ending a closed-door session on Thursday, the spokesperson for the Senate, Abdullahi Sabi, announced that Mr. Magu’s nomination by President Muhammadu Buhari as EFCC chairman had been rejected. He cited “available security report” for the rejection.

On Monday, the Senate Leader, Ali Ndume, claimed the Senate  did not reject Mr. Magu’s nomination but only suspended discussions on the matter until the SSS’ concerns are resolved.

PREMIUM TIMES’ ongoing investigation into the procedural issues involved in the handling of Mr. Magu’s nomination showed the State Security Service actually turned in two reports on Mr. Magu. Both, though signed by one official, Folashade Ojo, on behalf of the Director General, Lawal Daura, are contradictory, having different conclusions.

Reasons the SSS acted the way it did – directly sending a report to the Senate to block a presidential nominee – have remained unanswered.

Nigerian Senate
Nigerian Senate

PREMIUM TIMES investigations, however, reveal that the SSS acted only after it received requests from both the presidency and the Senate to vet Mr. Magu.

The Presidency, through Mr. Buhari’s senior special assistant on National Assembly, Ita Enang, made the request that Mr. Magu be vetted via an August 26 letter SSAP/NASS/SEN/I67 to the SSS.

The Senate’s version went to the SSS through its Clerk on September 21 via letter NASS/CS/SA/01/16/08/1.

While the Senate sought vetting of Mr. Magu and other nominees for the EFCC Board, the presidency asked that only Mr. Magu be screened.

Incidentally, the SSS replied both the Senate and the Presidency on October 3 with separate reports SV.114/2 and SV.114/3 respectively.

A review of how the Presidency, the Senate and the SSS handled Mr. Magu’s nomination revealed procedural lapses and questions the capacity of Nigeria’s secret police to gather factual information about subjects under investigation.


The Presidency made the request for Mr. Magu’s confirmation in July through a letter signed by Vice-president Yemi Osinbajo in his capacity as acting president when Mr. Buhari travelled abroad for medical treatment.

But it was after one month of seeking the confirmation – and after eight months in acting capacity – that the presidency sought security vetting  for Mr. Magu.

EFCC Chairman, Ibrahim Magu
EFCC Chairman, Ibrahim Magu

By standard practice, nominees of the president get security clearance before their names are sent to the National Assembly for confirmation.

Since Mr. Magu’s nomination did not come with security clearance, the Senate, whose members, including its President, Bukola Saraki, have at different times been investigated by Mr. Magu, had a window to approach the intelligence agency for security vetting.

However,  the most serious issue arising is the fact that claims made by the SSS in its reports are not factual.

A fact-check by PREMIUM TIMES over the weekend exposed the falsehood in the reports. For instance, our report showed the SSS lied on the claim that Mr. Magu lives in a rented Abuja apartment paid for by a “questionable” business man and retired air commodore Umar Mohammed at the rate of N20 million per annum.

Meanwhile, the two SSS reports gave contradictory conclusions. The one to the Senate advised against Mr. Magu’s confirmation, saying he had failed the integrity test; but the SSS asked the Presidency to give the subject “benefit of doubt and be considered” in view “of his achievements since assumption of office in acting capacity” although his “integrity may be in doubt”.


The Presidency could not be reached to comment for this story. Repeated calls and a text to Femi Adesina, Mr. Buhari’s special adviser on media and publicity, were neither answered nor returned.  His colleague, Garba Shehu, initially promised to get back but did not do so.

The presidential assistant on the Senate through whom the presidency’s request for security vetting was made, Mr. Enang, did not also answer calls or reply our text message.

Similarly, the Senate’s spokesperson, Aliyu Abdullahi, did not answer several calls and a text message.

Photo credit: www.newsflashngr.com
President Muhammadu Buhari
Photo credit: www.newsflashngr.com



A senior lawyer and presidential adviser on anti-corruption campaign, Itse Sagay, said the Senate did no wrong by approaching the SSS for information on Mr. Magu.

“It is not wrong for the legislature to ask an agency for information on somebody under its consideration. You don’t need any power for that,” Mr. Sagay said.

He, however, said the Senate did not act in good faith, saying “the whole thing is stage managed.”

“Senate wants an excuse for turning down the appointment.”

Asked for his comment on our finding that the Presidency sought vetting of Mr. Magu after he had been nominated, Mr. Sagay said, “I don’t know about that. There is no basis for that (SSS) report. The man has held positions before. The whole thing is bogus.”

Premium Times: Contrary to SSS claim, documents show how FCTA paid for Magu’s official residence

Newly obtained documents have shed more light into how the official residence of the embattled chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, was paid for.

The documents showed that Ibrahim Magu’s apartment was paid for and furnished by the Federal Capital Territory Administration.

The additional details provide further backing to a fact-check published by this newspaper over the weekend that highlighted the falsehood in a security report the State Security Service forwarded to the Senate to frustrate the confirmation of Mr. Magu.

New Director General of SSS, Lawan Daura
Director General of SSS, Lawan Daura.

Further investigations have since shown that the SSS actually sent two contradictory reports; one recommending Mr. Magu’s confirmation and the other saying he would be a liability to the anti-corruption war if cleared for the post.

Nigerian senators last Friday declined to approve President Muhammadu Buhari’s nomination of Mr. Magu, who has been functioning in acting capacity since November 9, 2015, because he failed a purported security screening.

The SSS screening report, which was later sighted by this newspaper, made allegations of fraud, lavish lifestyle, insubordination and racketeering against the acting head of the anti-graft agency.

A particular claim in the report was that Mr. Magu suddenly assumed a lifestyle well above his take-home pay. The SSS said the EFCC chief paid about N40 million for an apartment in the exquisite Abuja neighbourhood of Maitama.

But documents obtained after the Senate’s refusal to confirm Mr. Magu show that the SSS might have failed to properly check its fact before presenting it to the Senate.

Mr. Magu’s apartment, which the SSS said was acquired with questionable proceeds, was actually paid for by the FCTA through a contract award on March 30, 2016.

The contractor, Valcour SA Nigeria Ltd., had entered a bid to furnish the apartment with a total of N43.8 million on March 29, 2016.

The firm calculated the bill as N9.8 million for furniture, N1.5 million for plumbing and N414,500 for electrical work and carpentry.

Nigerian Senate
Nigerian Senate

Other activities to be carried out in the apartment, according to the contractor, included purchase and installation of new television set and cable for N1.28 million, window blind for N1.18 million and security, utility and gym equipment for N1.5 million.

Twenty-eight million was budgeted for a two-year rent of the apartment which was described as ‘Rudolf House’ in the document.

In a letter dated March 30, 2016, the proposal was approved by the municipal authorities in Abuja.

The letter, with reference number AMMC/ADM/907, and signed by Ibrahim Gusau, Secretary, Tenders Board at Abuja Metropolitan Management Council, read as follows:

“I am directed to inform you that provisional approval has been given for an emergency award of contract to your company in line with PPA Section 42 (1b and 1f) for rent of residential accommodation for security operatives (EFCC) for two (2) years and furnishing same at the total sum of 43, 800.00 (Forty Three Million Eight Hundred Thousand Naira) only with completion period of 6 (six) weeks for furnishing.

“You are requested to proceed with the service and note that the notification of provisional award is subject to notification by the Federal Capital Territory Administration Tenders Board.

“Accordingly, I am directed to inform you also that “the contract or any part thereof shall not be transferred, sublet or assigned to any person/body in any way.

“You’re requested to indicate in writing your acceptance or otherwise of the award and thereafter report to the Coordinator, Abuja Metropolitan Management Council (AMMC) for further instruction. The legal unit (AMMC) is similarly informed by a copy of this letter for their information and records.”

Valcour SA accepted the offer in a letter sent the next day, March 31. A total payment of N43,800,870 was made to the firm through a Zenith Bank account. Payment was made to the contractor through electronic transfer by the Central Bank of Nigeria.


See Documents Below:


Premium Times: How DSS submitted two contradictory reports on Magu, to Senate

The State Security Service (SSS) sent two different and contradictory security reports to the Nigerian Senate on the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), PREMIUM TIMES can authoritatively report today.

While both reports stated that Mr. Magu had some “integrity issues”, they differed on the actions they suggest the upper chamber take on the confirmation of the EFCC boss.

One of the reports suggested that clearing the anti-corruption fighter would spell danger for the administration’s anti-graft war.

The other described Mr. Magu as having performed excellently so far, and should therefore be favourably considered for the post of substantive chair of the EFCC.

Three senators told PREMIUM TIMES in separate interviews that the two reports were dated October 3, 2016, with one addressed to the acting clerk of the National Assembly, Mohammed Sani-Omolori, and the other to the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Ita Enang.

The two reports were also signed by the same official, Folashade Bello, on behalf of the Director General of the SSS, Lawal Daura.

The two documents were sent to the President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki.

The senators, who requested not to be named so they are not accused of divulging proceedings at a closed session, said both letters were read to lawmakers during the executive session held to decide the fate of Mr. Magu last Thursday.

“The two letters contain almost the same allegations against Magu,” one of the senators said. “But they are different in the recommendations made.

“While the report addressed to Ita Enang was dated August 25, 2016, the one to the acting clerk was dated September 21, 2016. But both were signed by the same Folashade Bello on behalf of Daura.”

Another Senator disclosed that in the letter written to Mr. Enang, the SSS stated that “although they found some adverse things in relation to Magu, he should be cleared given his excellent performance. They said he should be given the chance to run the commission.”

However, the senator said, the same SSS in the report addressed to the acting clerk about a month later asked the Senate not to confirm Mr. Magu.

“That other report concluded by saying Magu is integrity-challenged and will constitute a liability to the anti-corruption stand of the Buhari administration,” he said. “We can’t understand why the SSS cannot get its act together to issue a single report and make the same recommendation.”

A third senator told PREMIUM TIMES the Senate decided not to confirm Mr. Magu because of the two contradictory reports.

“It is our position that given the two confusing reports, it is only the president that can decide whether he still wants the man to run the EFCC or not. The ball is in his court,” he said.

The spokesperson for the Senate, Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, had told journalists on Thursday that the upper chamber decided against confirming Mr. Magu based on adverse security report from the SSS and that the Senate would write to the president intimating him of the decision.

Contacted on Monday for comments on the two contradictory reports the Senate received, Mr. Abdullahi said he would not join issue with anyone on the decision taken on the Magu affair.

“We have a moral, legal and constitutional duties to vet nominees, and that is what we did,” Mr. Abdullahi said. “Every necessary administrative actions were taken.

“What usually happen in every confirmation hearing was what took place. Whoever is not satisfied should explore other avenues to make his or her case. As far as we are concerned, we have done our job.”

In the reports, the SSS, among other allegations, accused Mr. Magu of benefitting from proceeds of fraud from an individual it (SSS) is prosecuting.

The agency alleged that the suspect, Umar Mohammed, who was a member of the presidential panel on arms procurement, paid the rent and furnished Mr. Magu’s official residence in the Maitama district of Abuja.

It also claimed that Mr. Magu used Mr. Mohammed’s private jets for trips outside Abuja.

A fact-check of the allegations by this newspaper indicates they were largely false.

The presidency said on Sunday that President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, to investigate allegations of corruption against Mr. Magu and other officials of his administration accused of corruption.

Opinion: Who is corrupt- Magu, Daura, or all of the above? – By Peregrino Brimah

It can’t be none of the above. It’s either Lawal Daura is right and EFCC boss Ibrahim Magu is a corrupt man, or Daura is corruptly accusing Magu of corruption in order to jeopardise the corruption war. Or both of them are corrupt.

So as more Nigerians slowly become wailers, I throw this question to the reader: A, B, or C?

While we painfully entertain ourselves with the dogfight going on among Buhari’s agency bosses, one can draw certain conclusions without pretending to know more than is in public domain.

One. Magu lives in opulence. He lives in a N20 million a year upscale mansion in Maitama. That’s about $66,000 on rent alone, furnishing not included. Is this corruption? I guess it depends. Two. Magu did not investigate his good friend Air Commodore Mohammed Umar for corruption till the DSS decided to. Three. Magu keeps federal documents in his home, which is risky and illegal. All these issues are in the DSS report and have been confirmed by PremiumTimes.

For those of us who have not focused on Magu, and refuse to quiz why numerous known corrupt cabal rogues remain free of EFCC jaws while the Sarakis including his wife and select PDP men get the finger from the department; we witnessed one story that was clearly a misuse and abuse of power: the arrest and detention of blogger Abu Sidiqu for non-economic and financial crimes.

When it comes to SSS boss Daura, it is scary to imagine or confirm as it may be that he may be so corrupt and vindictive to even top Buhari appointees. While at least half appears true, if just half of the case against Magu is untrue then a Security department boss who can do so to a known public agency boss can do unthinkable things to ruling party opponents and people like Nnamdi Kanu, Dasuki, Zakzaky and all other known and unknown Toms, Dicks and Harrys.

A corrupt public official is a grave danger not to himself but to the entire nation. And being appointees and not elected officials like the despised Senate, every extra day corrupt appointees remain in power, Buhari is party to the corruption and is corrupt. Buratai’s Dubai millions, Abba Kyari’s cases, Lawal Babachir’s IDP green grass case and Dambazzau’s cases as well as the CBN and FIRS nepotism cases and the CBN forex subsidy to the cabal case are still on the table or do we say, not on Buhari’s table.

The precipitant question obviously is: does Buhari lack care or capacity?

Are you wailing yet?

President Buhari Orders Investigation Of Magu, SGF Babachir Lawal

President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the investigation of top officials of his administration who have been accused of corruption.


A short statement by Mr. Buhari’s spokesperson, Garba Shehu, indicated the president’s directive.


“The attention of the presidency has been drawn to a number of reports in the media, in which various accusations of corruption have been leveled against some top officials in the administration,” Mr. Shehu said in the Sunday statement.


“In that regard, President Buhari has instructed the Attorney General of the Federation to investigate the involvement of any top government officials accused of any wrong-doing. If any of them are liable they will not escape prosecution.”


Although the statement did not mention any specific officials, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, and the Acting Chairman of the anti-graft EFCC have both been accused of corrupt practices.


Mr. Lawal was indicted by the Senate of making millions of naira of public funds from non-executed contracts in the troubled north-east using one of his companies.  The Senate has since asked for his suspension and prosecution, although he has denied any wrongdoing.


Mr. Magu’s confirmation as substantive chairman was blocked by the Senate last week. The Senate based its decision on a “security report” believed to have emanated from the State Security Service, SSS. A fact-check of the content of the report by PREMIUM TIMES, however, revealed most of the allegations were false.

SERAP accuses senate of violating Magu’s rights, petitions UN

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has petitioned Michel Forst, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders over the “intimidation, harassment and unfair treatment” of Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The upper legislative chamber had refused to confirm Magu’s appointment, citing a security report by the Department of State Services (DSS) as its reason.

But in the petition dated December 16, and signed by Adetokunbo Mumuni, its executive director, SERAP accused lawmakers of vilifying the anti-graft czar.

“The senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria apparently working with other agencies of government to use a purported security report the senate knew or ought to know is baseless and politically motivated to reject Mr Magu’s confirmation as substantive chairman of the EFCC,” the petition read.

“By relying on a report they knew or ought to know is baseless and politically motivated to reject Mr Magu’s appointment as chairman of the EFCC, the senate of Nigeria has flagrantly violated his right to fair hearing, and is implicitly working to weaken, intimidate, harass and ultimately undermine the independence and freedom of action of the EFCC in its efforts to combat high-profile official corruption.

“SERAP believes that the action by the Senate of Nigeria and other agencies of government apparently working with them undermines and violates Nigeria’s international obligation to respect, protect, promote and fulfil the human rights of the citizens, which inevitably creates a duty for the government to establish efficient and independent anti-corruption mechanisms.”

SERAP urged Forst to “urgently intervene in this matter to stop further intimidation and harassment of a prominent anti-corruption campaigner and human rights defender”.

“Apart from the fact that the allegations against Mr. Magu are baseless and politically motivated, the Senate of Nigeria flagrantly denied him constitutionally and internationally guaranteed right to a fair hearing by not providing him an opportunity to respond to the allegations against him,” the  petition read.

“The senate confirmation hearing therefore amounts to a nullification, or destruction of the very essence of the fundamental principles of fair hearing.

“The Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria relying on a baseless and politically motivated report declined to confirm the appointment of Ibrahim Magu as substantive chairman of the country’s leading anti-corruption agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). The Senate claimed that its action was based on a purported security report forwarded to it by the State Security Service.”

PT: Senate Confirmation, How SSS lied against EFCC boss, Magu.

On Thursday, the Nigerian Senate declined to confirm the appointment of Ibrahim Magu as substantive chair of the country’s premier anti-graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The upper legislative chamber claimed it could not approve the presidency’s request to confirm Mr. Magu based on a security report forwarded to it by the State Security Service.

“The Senate wishes to inform the public that based on available security report, the Senate cannot proceed with the confirmation of Ibrahim Magu as Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission,” the spokesperson for the Senate, Aliyu Abdullahi, said in a statement read to journalists.

“The nomination of Ibrahim Magu is hereby rejected and has been returned to the President for further action,” Mr. Abdullahi said.

The Senate did not provide the EFCC chairman an opportunity to respond to the allegations against him.

PREMIUM TIMES has obtained details of the security report on which the lawmakers based their decision and has investigated the claims against Mr. Magu.

We fact-checked some of the claims made by the SSS, and below are our findings:

ALLEGATION ONE: That during the tenure of Farida Waziri as EFCC chairperson, sensitive documents were found in Mr. Magu’s home.

The facts do not support that claim. A reporter for this newspaper extensively reported that event in 2008 when it happened, and is familiar with what transpired at the time.

Based on pressure from political gladiators of the period (among which were former Governors James Ibori and Bukola Saraki), then President Musa Yar’Adua unceremoniously removed Nuhu Ribadu as chairman of the EFCC.

After Mr. Ribadu’s departure, his successor, Mrs. Waziri, frustrated some of his closest and most resourceful aides in the commission, and harassed them for prolonged period.

Mr. Magu, who was a chief superintendent of police at the time, was sent away from the EFCC and his Lagos and Abuja homes were raided by operatives even before he had the opportunity to hand over to Umar Sanda as head of the Economic Governance Unit of the commission. He was later detained for three weeks.

Following complaints by Mrs. Waziri, the then Inspector General of Police, Mike Okiro, queried Mr. Magu, accusing him of serious misconduct. One of the allegations against him was that he removed and withheld EFCC files.

On August 25, 2008, Mr. Magu replied the query, explaining to the IGP that no unauthorized EFCC official documents were found in his home.

“I wish to state that the nature of my assignment at the EFCC is such that I worked round the clock and it was impossible for me to do my work effectively without working on some documents at home,” he wrote to Mr. Okiro at the time. “This is the reason I maintain an office bag where documents relating to investigations were kept. The documents listed were found in my office bag which I was in the process of handing over and were not found hidden anywhere in my house.

“It is therefore not the correct position to say that I bluntly refused to hand over EFCC’s property and documents. I had just concluded handing over the Abuja office and I was in Lagos to conclude handing over the Lagos office when the search was conducted. At the time of the search, I had not reported to my new command. It could therefore not be my intention to keep government documents in my house.

“I have suffered untold humiliation within the past one month. My home was ransacked, vandalized and my properties destroyed by men of the EFCC. I was detained in a cell meant for hardened criminals most of whom are armed robbers for three weeks. My health condition deteriorated as a result of his inhuman treatment meted out to me for doing my job diligently and with the pride required of a senior police officer of my rank in the Nigerian Police Force.

“I humbly implore the Inspector General of Police to totally exonerate me from blame and the said acts of serious misconduct because I was not involved and I am not involved. I will never be discouraged in my unrelenting war against crime and its associated manifestations as enshrined in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”

After investigation, the police IG exonerated Mr. Magu, posted him to the police’s Special Fraud Unit and promoted him to the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police shortly afterwards.

ALLEGATION TWO: That Mr. Magu currently occupies a residence rented for N40 million at N20 million per annum. This accommodation was not paid [for] from the commission’s (EFCC) finances, but by one Umar Mohammed, air commodore retired.

This claim is also untrue.

PREMIUM TIMES has obtained evidence showing the property in question was paid for by the Federal Capital Development Administration, and not Mr. Umar.

The E-Payment schedule, dated March 31, was issued by to the branch controller of Central Bank, Abuja, in favour of M/S Valcour SA Nigeria Limited.

The company was paid N39.628 million as payment for two-year rent and furnishing of the property, located in upscale Maitama district of Abuja.

The payment schedule was signed by Isiyaku Ismaila and confirmed by Zanna A. Hamza.

Mr. Magu lived in Karu, a suburb of Abuja, before his appointment as acting EFCC chair. With his new position, Mr. Magu moved into an official residence provided by the FCDA.

ALLEGATION 3: That the acting EFCC chairman regularly embarked on official and private trips through a private jet owned by embattled Air Commodore Mohammed Umar (Rtd).

PREMIUM TIMES checks show that this is not entirely correct. Our investigations indicate that Mr. Magu first met Mr. Umar when both of them worked as members of the Presidential Committee on the investigation of arms procurement. At the time, Mr. Umar was very close to President Muhammadu Buhari and had unlimited access to the presidential villa. Both men became close during the assignment.

Our investigations indicate that once this year, Mr. Magu travelled to Kano in company of EFCC’s director of finance and that in charge of organizational support. Those familiar with the trip said on their way back to Abuja, Mr. Umar, who at the time remained Mr. Magu’s colleague at the presidential committee, and who was at the time not in any trouble with the SSS, gave the two officials a lift.

We are unable to find any evidence that Mr. Magu flew in Mr. Umar’s private jet at any other time. Neither were we able to establish that the EFCC chairman flew to Maiduguri alongside Mr. Umar and a bank MD being investigated by the EFCC over complicity in funds allegedly stolen by former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke.

While some insiders at the commission denied the allegation, we could not independently verify the claims.

ALLEGATION 4: On 24 June, 2016, he (Magu) flew Emirate airlines first-class to Saudi Arabia to perform lesser hajj at the cost of N2.9m. This is in spite of Mr President’s directive to all public servants to fly economy class.

Insiders say while it was true that Mr. Magu indeed flew first class to Saudi Arabia for lesser hajj, he did not pay for the ticket with public funds. We could not however confirm this claim independently.

Rejecting Magu’s nomination done in Nigeria’s interest – Senator Wakili

Ali Wakili, senator representing Bauchi south, says the rejection of Ibrahim Magu’s nomination by the senate was done “in the interest of the Nigerian state”.


Wakili said this on Friday in reaction to a statement credited to Itse Sagay, chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee on Corruption.


Speaking at a legislative and media roundtable organised by the Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre (PLAC), Wakili said nobody loves Nigeria as much as the senate.


“These are eminent Nigerians saying that whether we like it or not Magu is going to be there,” she said.


“Is he trying to blackmail us or not? We took the issue purely in the interest of the Nigerian state. Nobody loves Nigeria more than us.”


On Thursday, Sagay said the appointment of Magu would be “renewed” whether he is confirmed by the senate or not.


“Since Nuhu Ribadu left, we have not had a man with such sterling qualities as Ibrahim Magu and whether they like it or not, Magu will be there until he completes his term under the law,” Sagay had said.


Magu has acted as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) chairman for about a year.

Shehu Sani: I’m impressed with Magu, he’s doing a good job

Shehu Sani, lawmaker representing Kaduna central, says Ibrahim Magu, chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), is doing well.

In a statement on Friday, Sani made known his position regarding the decision of the senate to reject the nomination of Magu as EFCC boss.

The senator noted that he’s impressed with the performance of Magu, but he’s bound by duty to respect the consensus of the senate majority.

He also said the EFCC could do better in the areas of “rule of law and fundamental human rights”.

“My personal opinion on this is simple; Magu is doing a good job as the boss of the EFCC.

“All that is needed is the rule of law and fundamental human rights elements which need to be strongly observed by the commission, rule of law remains the most potent weapon in the fight against corruption.

“I remained respectfully bound by the majority position of the Senate on the issue, but wish to categorically and unambiguously state that I’m personally impressed with his performance,” Sani wrote on his Facebook page.



Itse Sagay, chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee on Corruption, was recently quoted to have said Magu’s appointment as EFCC boss will be “renewed” whether he is confirmed or not.

BREAKING: A new name has been forwarded to the DSS for screening, to replace Magu

Omojuwa.Com sources in the Presidency have confirmed that a new name has been forwarded to the DSS for screening to replace Acting EFCC boss, Ibrahim Magu.


The said name has been forwarded over 2 weeks ago which lends credence to the speculation that the Presidency was aware of Magu’s dirty dealings and eventual rejection by the Senate.


From speculations, the new intending EFCC chair may be from a Yoruba speaking North Central state.


Recall that the Senate on Thursday afternoon announced the rejection of the nomination of Ibrahim Magu as the substantive chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over security report at its disposal.


Follow our updates for more details.