I Used NIMASA Money To Acquire My Abuja Property- Ex -DG, Jauro

* Logo source: Daily Post

 

A former Acting Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Haruna Baba Jauro, yesterday admitted before a Federal High Court in Lagos that he used the agency’s fund to acquire a property in Abuja.

He told Justice Mojisola Olatoregun that the N20 million earmarked for intelligence gathering by the NIMASA’s Committee for Intelligence formed part of the money he used in acquiring the property.

The money was paid by the committee into the account of a firm, Thlumbau Enterprises Limited, solely for the purpose of gathering intelligence for NIMASA.

The firm and one, Dr. Dauda Bistrus Bawa, were named as Baba Jauro’s co-defendants in a 19-count charge of alleged N314.4 million filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

While being examined by EFCC’s lawyer, Rotimi Oyedepo, the former NIMASA boss, said the N20 million paid into the firm’s account in a bank was not used for the intended purpose.

“The sum of N20 million was paid to the third defendant (Thlumbau Enterprises Limited) account for an intelligence gathering activities on July 10, 2014, by the Committee for Intelligence, but no intelligence gathering activity was performed for NIMASA”, Baba Jauro said.

Upon further interrogation, the Ex-NIMASA boss told the court that apart from the N20 million, there were other cash inflows into the account which shore up the fund in it to about N55.6 million.

“From the money, I asked the second defendant (Dr. Bawa) to transfer N52 million to one, Helen Mbonu, on September 25, 2014. It was part of the money that was used to acquire my property in Abuja which was situated at Number 4, Alexandra Crescent, Wuse.

“The property was acquired in my name in the sum of N65 million and I also took a loan of N30 million from a bank to fund it”, he said.

Baba Jauro further told the court that though he is not the promoter of Thlumbau Enterprises Limited, all his children were directors at the firm.

He said one of his children, Samuel Haruna Baba Jauro was alloted 500,000 ordinary shares of the firm. He added that another two of his children were also allotted 250,000 ordinary shares of the firm each.

He had earlier informed the court while being examined by his lawyer, Olalekan Ojo, that some of the funds in the firm’s account were cash gift from his predecessor, Mr. Patrick Akpobolokemi.

He said he received the gifts while he was the Executive Director, Finance and Administration at NIMASA.

Responding to a question on why he was collecting cash gifts from Akpobolokemi, Baba Jauro said, “At the time, I needed money, I went to the Director General and asked him if he can borrow me N3 million. He was surprised that I don’t have N3 million. He later called me after some days and promise to help me from time to time.

He also told me the N3 million he initially gave me was a gift.

The gifts I received from the Director General were above his emoluments”.

Further hearing in the matter continues today.

 

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