N1.5B Fraud: Senator Nwaoboshi Loses Property To FG

* Pix Source: 123RF.com



A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos today ordered temporary seizure of a 12 storey building located at 27, Marine Road, Apapa, belonging to a People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Senator Representing Delta North Senatorial District, Peter Nwaoboshi.

The court order granted by Justice Abdulazeez Anka was sequel to an Ex-parte application filed before the court by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) against Senator Nwaoboshi and his two companies; Golden Touch Construction Project Limited, and Bilderberg Enterprises Limited.

The application was argued by counsel to the anti-graft agency Mr George Chia-yakua.

In urging the court to grant the application, EFCC counsel, Chia-yakua, informed the court that the application was pursuant to section 44(2)(k) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (As amended), and Section 28 and 29 of the EFCC (establishment) Act 2004.

The EFCC counsel informed the court that the Commission received a petition from an anti-corruption group, ‘Anti-Corruption and Integrity Forum’, against the senator and his Companies on alleged money laundering.

The EFCC in affidavit in support of the Ex-parte application filed by E. E. Iheanancho, and deposed to by Garuba Yusuf Abubakar stated that upon the receipt of the petition several investigations which includes making enquiries from Code of Conduct Bureau, Abuja, banks, Delta State Governor’s Office, Delta State Tenders Board, Nigeria Customs Service, Lagos State Ministry of Lands, Federal Inland Revenue Services, and Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), with a view to trace movement of funds suspected to be proceeds of Illegal activities, source of funds, and the beneficiaries.

The deponent further stated that in 2010, the Tender Board of Delta State awarded a contract to the Senator’s second company to purchase new construction equipment for Delta State Direct Labour Agency, at the sum of N1.580 billion, but rather than buying new equipment, the company only imported and supplied used equipment to the agency , while the Delta State government paid fully for new one.

The deponent also stated that upon investigation, it was revealed that the Senator moved the proceeds to various accounts linked to him, while his company bided for and bought the  12 storey building formerly known as Guinea House, located at 27, Marine Road, Apapa, Lagos at the sum of N805 million, with the used of his first company, Golden Touch Construction Project Limited.

The commission said response from the Secretary to Delta State government shows the sale of building to the Senator’s company.

He also stated that the Senator completed and submitted the Code of Conduct Bureau Asset Declaration Form on June 19, 2015, wherein he stated that he acquired the said Guinea House building, Apapa, by being a Director in the second respondent.

The EFCC however, said that when his team wrote to CAC seeking information on the corporate details of the company, it was revealed that the Senator is neither a shareholder or  director in the company, and that the purported directors and shareholders, Nwanbuoku Ike and Emma Ekpon, equally in their  statements, denied knowledge of being  directors and shareholders of the company and that the presence of their names in the CAC documents was forged.

The deponent also averred that further investigation revealed that the Senator’s Bank Verification Number (BVN) , has 20 Bank accounts he operates in Nigeria, while his private companies through BVN , have 23 Bank accounts.

He stated that a he was informed by E. E. Iheanancho, a lawyer with the Commission on April 6, 2017, that an order of the court attaching the said 12 storey building to the Commission to prevent its disposal pending the conclusion of the investigation and when a criminal charge will be filed against Senator Nwaoboshi and his companies.

Justice Anka after listened to the submission of EFCC counsel, ordered that the 12 storey building located at 27, Marine Road, Apapa, Lagos, belonging to Senator Nwaoboshi be temporary forfeited by the EFCC, pending the outcome of its investigation.

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