- EFCC to Prosecute INEC Director over N16m Scam
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday said it had concluded arrangements to prosecute a Deputy Director of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Akwa Ibom State and former Electoral Officer in Rivers State, Gogo Anderson Waribo, for allegedly collecting N16 million from the infamous N23 billion linked to former Petroleum Minister, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, which she has denied belonged to her.
In a statement, EFCC Head of Media and Information, Wilson Uwujaren, said: “Waribo was arrested by operatives of the anti-graft agency following an intelligence report that some INEC officers conspired with some staff a bank to defraud the federal government of several millions of naira.
“Although he has consistently denied involvement in the fraud, investigation revealed that the INEC deputy director’s name is on the list of beneficiaries of the money.
“He was alleged to have received the sum of N16 million through his First Bank account on March 27, 2015. Waribo allegedly gave N5 million from the N16 million to Peter Popnen, an ex- INEC official.”
The suspect is expected to be arraigned as soon as investigation is completed, the EFCC spokesman added.
The EFCC yesterday also arraigned the duo of Usman B Abdurahman (KILISHIN DAS) and Hafizu Dauda of the Bauchi State judiciary before Justice M. A Sambo of the Bauchi State High Court on a six-count charge bordering on conspiracy, obtaining of goods under false pretence and presenting false documents.
The suspects who are secretary and treasurer respectively of the Amalgamated Union of Public Corporations, Civil Service Technical and Recreational Services Employees, (AUPCTRE) judiciary branch, Bauchi State, were arrested following a petition by a top judicial officer in the state, alleging that sometime in 2009, the association entered into contract agreement with De-Damak Nigeria Limited to supply 3,000 unit of motorcycles at the cost of N217,000,000 for distribution to its members, based on management guarantee and irrevocable standing payment order (ISPO) by the High Court of Bauchi State.
According to Uwujaren, “The unionists allegedly diverted many units of the motorcycles and sold them to M. D. Tofa Investment Limited in Kano.
“It was also discovered that even the few names submitted by the union as beneficiaries of the loan for remittance were fictitious; others were either retired or dead, while majority could not be found in the central data base of the Bauchi State civil Service.”
The defendants pleaded ‘not guilty’ to all the charges read against them. In view of their plea, the prosecution counsel Abubakar Aliyu urged the court to fix a date for trial in line with the practice direction of the Bauchi State High Court and also to remand the accused persons in prison custody.
Defence counsel, Y. A Garkuwa, informed the court that he filed a bail application dated March 1, 2017, and served same to prosecution.
Justice Sambo adjoined the case to March 3, 2017, for consideration of bail application, and March 20, 2017, for trial.