EFCC files N2.9bn fraud charges against Okorocha

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Barely 72 hours af­ter his 2023 presi­dential campaign posters flooded major streets of the Feder­al Capital Territory (FCT), the Economic and Finan­cial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has filed a 17-count criminal charge against a former governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha.

Okorocha was the governor of Imo State from 2011 to 2019.

He is presently a senator representing Imo West in the National Assembly.

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So far, no date has been fixed for the arraignment of Okoro­cha at the Federal High Court in Abuja, wherethe17-countcrimi­nalchargewasinstitutedagainst theformergovernoronMonday.

According to the anti-graft agency, Senator Okorocha, who is believed to be having a run­ning battle with Governor Hope Uzodimma, is being charged to court over allegation of conspir­acy with his cronies, including a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and five com­panies, to fritter the sum of N2.9 billion public funds.

Also to be docked alongside Okorocha, are Anyim Nyerere Chinenye, NaphtaliInternation­al Limited, Perfect Finish Multi Projects Limited, Consolid Proj­ectsConsultingLimited, Pramif International Limited, and Leg­end World Concepts Limited.

Part of the documents filed incourtshowedhowthesenator awarded 12 contracts worth N20 billioninallegedviolation of the Public Procurement Act.

Court processes also stated how a government committee uncovered the sum of N112.8 billion “dubious debts” which various banks owed the state during Okorocha’s tenure.

Specifically, Okorocha is being accused by the state gov­ernment of committing vari­ous corrupt practices including diversion andpilfering of public funds belonging to the state gov­ernment.

However, upon interrogation, he denied committing any such offence.

However, no judge has been assigned the case.

Similarly, the EFCC has de­tained the Managing Director of MedviewAirline, Muneer Bankole, over Hajj funds.
Bankole, who arrived at the EFCC headquarters in Abuja about 11a.m on Monday was immediately questioned by the operatives of the commission.

An EFCC source disclosed that Bankole was invited by the anti-graft agency over a case of alleged diversion of 50 percent of funds paid to him by the Na­tional Hajj Commission, and additional $900,000 for the airlift of pilgrims in 2019.

He allegedly received the funds as mobilisation but did not execute the contract.

The spokesman of the com­mission, Wilson Uwujaren, when contacted confirmed the arrest.

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