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Jul 9, 2008, 06:44 PM
Billions of naira contineu to grow wings:

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/jul/9/603.html

Another N20bn aviation fund missing - EFCC begins manhunt of aviation officials

Shola Adekola, Lagos
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
THE whereabouts of another $155 million (about N20 billion) in the aviation sector is now a subject of investigation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Indeed, the commission may have concluded plans to question key officers both within and outside the aviation sector. The money, it was gathered, was the Bilateral Air Service Agreement Fund (BASA) belonging to the defunct Nigeria Airways.

Nigerian Tribune on Tuesday gathered that the decision of the EFCC to quiz the officers across the aviation agencies and other selected government agencies might not be unconnected with the revelations at the just-concluded public hearing on the whereabouts of the BASA fund.

The BASA money was the revenue generated by the Nigeria Airways through the commercial agreements it had with foreign carriers using Nigeria抯 airspace.

The BASA money was the royalty the foreign airlines paid to the national carrier as charges for the extra rights they requested for and got outside the original bilateral agreement between their countries and Nigeria.

It was gathered that at the public hearing, former Minister of Finance, Nenadi Usman, could not explain in plain terms how the account could be accessed.

The news filtered into the industry about three months ago that contrary to the belief in the sector that the money was intact in a special account under the management of the accountant general, it had actually been appropriated in the 2007 budget.

At a meeting held between the Ministry of Aviation, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and office of the Accountant General, it was disclosed that the money was no longer available, a situation which sparked up debate in the aviation sector.

Though the account has now been transferred to the NCAA for management, it was gathered that the authority will have to open a fresh account, thus bringing to an end the $155 million BASA抯 account.

Following the inability of the Senate Committee on Aviation to really ascertain the whereabouts of the fund, the EFCC has been asked to take over the investigation.

Nigerian Tribune gathered that some key officers from the NCAA, ministries of aviation and finance and office of the accountant general may be quizzed over the money.

It was the Nigeria Airways that was managing the account until it was transferred to the Ministry of Aviation as part of the plan by the then government to stifle the national carrier to pave the way for its liquidation.

The domestic airlines had cried out in the past for government to give it access to the account as loans for its repositioning while the industry was left dying due to lack of funds.

Jul 9, 2008, 09:11 PM
I am positive that one day we will overcome. Nigeria will survive.

Sapele Man
Jul 10, 2008, 12:29 PM
I am positive that one day we will overcome. Nigeria will survive.


That is right but not without some form of revolution. Make I tell you dis, dem not dey make omelette without breaking eggs.

Son of the Delta
Jul 10, 2008, 01:49 PM
I am positive that one day we will overcome. Nigeria will survive.

As long as Nigeria remains centralized and those at the top keep on having this "them" and "us" mentality then the chances that Nigeria will become extinct like the dinosaur is more realistic.

Jul 10, 2008, 02:11 PM
Son of Delta the son of Adimu,

Every good start with the individual. It is poison in people like you that have divided us into "them" and "us". We are at each others throat on daily basis. Blame "centralized" all you want, it is only part of the problem, we all are the other part.

By the way, do you know any father by the name of Adimu?

As long as Nigeria remains centralized and those at the top keep on having this "them" and "us" mentality then the chances that Nigeria will become extinct like the dinosaur is more realistic.

Son of the Delta
Jul 10, 2008, 02:20 PM
Son of Delta the son of Adimu,

Every good start with the individual. It is poison in people like you that have divided us into "them" and "us". We are at each others throat on daily basis. Blame "centralized" all you want, it is only part of the problem, we all are the other part.

By the way, do you know any father by the name of Adimu?

You don start again oh! Which poison my friend?Is talking about the evils in the Nigerian society "poison" for you?

Well if that is poison for you I am willing to pour out higher doses of that poisonous substance against all forms of injustice in that society.

Son of the Delta
Jul 10, 2008, 02:21 PM
Son of Delta the son of Adimu,

Every good start with the individual. It is poison in people like you that have divided us into "them" and "us". We are at each others throat on daily basis. Blame "centralized" all you want, it is only part of the problem, we all are the other part.

By the way, do you know any father by the name of Adimu?

You don start again oh! Which poison my friend?Is talking about the evils in the Nigerian society "poison" for you?

Well if that is poison for you I am willing to pour out higher doses of that poisonous substance against all forms of injustice in that society.

Jul 10, 2008, 03:24 PM
Son of Delta the Son of Oduduwa,

You did not answer the last question about Adimu.

You don start again oh! Which poison my friend?Is talking about the evils in the Nigerian society "poison" for you?

Well if that is poison for you I am willing to pour out higher doses of that poisonous substance against all forms of injustice in that society.

Son of the Delta
Jul 10, 2008, 03:39 PM
Son of Delta the Son of Oduduwa,

You did not answer the last question about Adimu.

Namio why are you derailing the thread if you want to talk about Adimu or Oduduwa I will advise you to start another thread on that or better still right an article on the subject.

Jul 10, 2008, 04:12 PM
Son Of Delta the Son of Oduduwa,

I never realized that you are also a diplomat when you want to. This thread is not derailed by trying to come together and also to point out the wrong caustic language we use on one another while looters get away. You do have support for ND struggle but you also turn people off.


QUOTE=Son of the Delta;4295068134]Namio why are you derailing the thread if you want to talk about Adimu or Oduduwa I will advise you to start another thread on that or better still right an article on the subject.[/QUOTE]

Jul 10, 2008, 06:12 PM
Son of Delta the son of Adimu,

Every good start with the individual. It is poison in people like you that have divided us into "them" and "us". We are at each others throat on daily basis. Blame "centralized" all you want, it is only part of the problem, we all are the other part.

By the way, do you know any father by the name of Adimu?

The blame everybody brigade, some of you continue to delude yourself that when you blame Nigeria's problem on everybody people will lose sight of who the real culprits are. When it is not everybody's fault it is the fault of the elite from every group, you folks never tire of playing the ostrich.

Yeah, we all were among the rogues that stole the N19b aviation fund, we also were part of those that stole the $16b for power, we all stole the NNPC money and the money for the roads, Obj, Anenih and co are only holding it in trust for all of us. Therefore since everybody is responsible for Nigeria's problem we need to prosecute everybody and nobody in particular. Yeye dey smell.

Jul 10, 2008, 06:21 PM

I do agree with your twist but that is far from what I mean. Who are the people glorifying the looters? Who defend them when they get into trouble? Who beg them to develop their village, on their salary? If they dont, who chase them out? I can go on and on as we treat them like demi gods. So we do have responsibility to stone them to banishment. We can not be acting contrary to our wish.

I do understand your twist though.

The blame it everybody brigade, some of you continue to delude yourself that when you blame Nigeria's problem on everybody people will lose sight of who the real culprits are. When it is not everybody's fault it is the fault of the elite from every group, you folks never tire of playing the ostrich.

Yeah, we all ware among the rogues that stole the N19b aviation fund, we also were part of those that stole the $16b for power, we all stole the NNPC money and the money for the roads, Obj, Anenih and co are only holding it in trust for all of us. Therefore since everybody is responsible for Nigeria's problem we need to prosecute everybody and nobody in particular. Yeye dey smell.

Jul 10, 2008, 07:24 PM

I do agree with your twist but that is far from what I mean. Who are the people glorifying the looters? Who defend them when they get into trouble? Who beg them to develop their village, on their salary? If they dont, who chase them out? I can go on and on as we treat them like demi gods. So we do have responsibility to stone them to banishment. We can not be acting contrary to our wish.

I do understand your twist though.

All you are doing is blaming the victims of a poorly structured nation. When a politician can win elections in his constutuency via executive fiat from the centre what do you expect the people to become beyond praise singers. SOD said change the system to create accountability by diluting the center and you opposed him that this was not the problem rather everybody is the problem, so na you sabi how you want arrest everybody.

Son of the Delta
Jul 10, 2008, 07:32 PM

The truth is that there are some who benefit from the current state of anarchy,corruption,crony or sectional capitalism and gangsterism and would not want to witness change.

Mind you there were people who fought against industrial revolution in England because they felt it did not favour them so things like this should not shock you.

Jul 10, 2008, 07:54 PM
SOD, Ojemba,

Honestly, I feel insulted for thinking I am one of those who oppose change in Nigeria. It is the only way to go. My problem with my brothers is that we are so divided and looters are using it to conquer us. We hardly work together on anything. Just look at the poison we pour on one another in this NVS.

As for Niger Delta, check my other post for my record. I need not brag about it here after that accusation. If change do not come from us, will it come for looters? By the way which region benefited most from Federation?

All you are doing is blaming the victims of a poorly structured nation. When a politician can win elections in his constutuency via executive fiat from the centre what do you expect the people to become beyond praise singers. SOD said change the system to create accountability by diluting the center and you opposed him that this was not the problem rather everybody is the problem, so na you sabi how you want arrest everybody.

Jul 14, 2008, 11:39 AM
Akala is on a looting spree...


How Alao-Akala looted over N1bn in 11 months – EFCC
By Musikilu Mojeed, Mudiaga Affe and Olalekan Adetayo
Published: Monday, 14 Jul 2008
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has alleged that Oyo State Governor Adebayo Alao-Akala used two book publishing companies and another firm to plunder over N1bn belonging to the state between January and December 2006.

It also accused him of abusing his office during the 11 months he first spent as governor of the state.

Alao-Akala, a former deputy governor of the state, took over from Alhaji Rahidi Ladoja, who was removed as governor in a controversial circumstance by the State House of Assembly. But in April 2007, he contested and won the governorship election in the state on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party.

The EFCC said in an interim report of an investigation into a petition by one Mr. Kunle Jimoh and Mr. Julius Dada that Alao-Akala routinely inflated contracts with a view to enriching himself during the 11 month period.

In the report, which was exclusively obtained by our correspondent in Abuja on Sunday, the commission said that the governor “conspired” with an Ibadan-based book publishing firm and another company to perpetrate fraud amounting to more than a billion naira.
The anti-graft agency said it found out that N631m contract Alao-Akala awarded to the publishing firm for the supply of textbooks to the state government was inflated to the tune of N488m.

Another contract for the supply of textbooks awarded to the same company for N631m was also reportedly inflated by N395m.

The EFCC also said that it suspected that another contract awarded to another book publishing firm, whose headquarters is said to be in Ibadan, for N39.7m, was inflated.

The commission added that one of the publishing firms refunded N10m of the money it was overpaid while the other returned N12m.

In the report, the anti-graft body also accused the governor of paying out N190m to 19 members of the then state House of Assembly for constituency projects.

It said that cheques for the projects should not have been written in the names of the lawmakers.

The commission also queried the contract for the computerisation of personnel payroll and identity cards production for the state which Alao-Akala awarded at a cost of N182. 7m.

It said that N143.9m out of the total contract sum had already been paid.

The report added that a comprehensive probe of “another company used by the Akala government to inflate contracts” was in progress.

It said, “From the foregoing, it is clear that Otunba Alao-Akala abused his office to enrich himself contrary to his oath of office.

“He has acted contrary to the provisions of the constitution and betrayed public trust. In light of the above, therefore, it is pertinent that he has a case to answer.”

The governor cannot, however, be tried in court until the expiration of his tenure because he is covered by constitutional immunity.

When contacted on telephone on Sunday, the governor’s Special Adviser on Public Communications, Mr. Dotun Oyelade, said Alao-Akala could only make a meaningful comment on the report when a copy reached him.

Oyelade said, “We seek to see the report because there are so many fake documents flying in an out of the newsroom these days.

“It is only when we see a copy of the said report that we can make any meaningful comment.

“We seek the veracity of the so-called indicting document. We affirm that it is another hoax strung up to exhume a dead issue.”

In a telephone interview with one of our correspondents on Sunday, the EFCC’s Head of Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Babafemi, said that the commission would not leave any case untouched in its efforts at bringing corrupt public officials to book.

Babafemi said that the present leadership of the commission was interested in all high-profile cases.

This, he explained, was why the commission would want to deal with such cases now so that it could treat others it had received intelligence reports on.

He said, “Ibadan is part of the Lagos/South West zone. There is a committee working on the backlog of cases now and no stone would be left unturned.

“About 70 per cent of the cases are in Lagos and the Alao-Akala case, of which I do not know its current status, may be part of the Lagos cases.

“If it is among the cases, she (the EFCC chairman, Mrs. Farida Waziri) will likely be briefed about it this week because the Lagos/South West zone is the next region for her to deal with.

“The Director of Operations (of EFCC) is already in Lagos preparatory to her arrival in Lagos this week.

“Since she resumed, she has been dealing with the backlog on regional basis and there are six zones in the country that she will have to deal with.”

Ladoja had, after his reinstatement, set up an Administrative Panel of Inquiry in March 2007 to probe the Alao-Akala administration.

The panel said Alao-Akala failed to protect public funds as expected from him during the 11 months he served as governor.

The Ladoja dministration in a White Paper published as Oyo State Notice No. 7 in Gazette No. 05 of March 22, 2007 accepted the recommendation of the panel indicting Alao-Akala.

But less than two months after he assumed office on May 19, 2007, Alao-Akala got the state House of Assembly to quash the indictment.
Hundreds of millions of naira on executive traveles and allowances!..Worthwhile??? Umoru ; a good student of "Baba" ...


Yar’Adua, VP spend N655.97m on foreign trips
By Chiawo Nwankwo, Abuja
Published: Monday, 14 Jul 2008

President Umaru Yar’Adua and Vice-President Goodluck Jonathan may have spent N655. 97m on foreign trips in the first six months of this year.

The sum is only N63.49m short of the N719, 463,736 allocated in the 2008 budget as expenditure for international travels and transport for the State House.

Details of this expenditure contained in a document titled “State House, 2008 Budget implementation” and made available to the National Assembly was obtained by our correspondent on Sunday.

According to the document, the expenditure on foreign travels accounted for 91.18 per cent of the total amount. Local travels and transport bill accounted for the balance.

Investigations showed that the foreign trips on which the N655m was spent included Yar’Adua’s presidential visit to China on February 27, 2008; medical check-up in Germany on April 4; and the May 22 African Union committee of 12 meeting in Arusha, Tanzania.

Others include his visits to South Africa on June 6; France on June 11; Egypt on June 29 for the AU summit; and the G8 summit in Japan on July 6.

The exact dates of Jonathan’s trips to India, Rome, Japan and Israel could not be ascertained as at 7pm on Sunday.

A source in the Presidency told our correspondent in Abuja on Sunday that the President and the vice-president started spending the budget foreign trips before the 2008 budget was signed into law on April 15, 2008 by the President.

Such expenditure, however, is in line with the powers conferred on him by Section 82 of the 1999 Constitution.

Under the provision, “the President may authorise the withdrawal of moneys from the Consolidated Revenue Fund of the Federation for the purpose of meeting expenditure necessary to carry on the services” of government.

The implication of the N63.490m balance is that the President may be forced to submit a supplementary budget to cover expenses on foreign trips for the remaining months of the year.

Ironically, the 2008 Appropriation Amendment bill dated June 26 and read in both chambers of the National Assembly on July 2, does not contain any supplementary provision for State House official engagements outside the country.

Other high expenditures in the first six months are maintenance of aircraft at a cost of N370.9m and food stuff and supplies, N181.2m. About N474.1M was approved for these items in the 2008 budget.

Also, the international training budget is almost exhausted with N360,577,695.86 spent as at June 30. Its total budget for the year is N381.2m.

But there are other expenditure sub-heads that nothing has been spent on in the last six months. They include the N416.2m budgeted for the purchase of radiology equipment; N179.7m for expansion/construction of a hanger and N95. 82m for the upgrade of ICT networks.

Also not expended are the N120.3m budget for the upgrade and furnishing of the vice-president’s residence and guest house; N323.9m for the upgrade of Aso Villa facilities and N119m for the purchase of 15 Toyota Hiace buses and 10 Toyota Hilux vans.

Jul 14, 2008, 03:40 PM
Omo Akala na ya papa born you, baba (Adedibu) will be proud of you wherever he is now (something tells me it is somewhere hot). Don't forget to do sallah for baba's almajiri, after all my people say "chop alone dey run belle".

Jul 15, 2008, 06:16 AM

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=12340&Itemid=43

Aviation probe: Obasanjo, Atiku fingered in withdrawal of N9.3bn from BASA fund Written by Emmanuel Aziken
Tuesday, 15 July 2008

FORMER President Olusegun Obasanjo and his deputy, Atiku Abubakar have been fingered in the withdrawals of $78.9 million (N9.3 billion) that accrued into the Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA) fund of the federation and will be required to defend the withdrawals before the Senate Committee on Aviation, sources have disclosed.
Documents cited by Vanguard in the course of the investigations show that President Obasanjo and his former deputy, together made approvals of an estimated $75 million out of the BASA funds when they were in office.

Obasanjo made 27 approvals totaling $68.8 million while Atiku Abubakar made 7 approvals totaling $6.953 million. A total of 4 withdrawals were made by unspecified persons totaling $3.14 million. The documents also show that a total of $109.9 million flowed into the BASA account while a total of $78.9 was expended out of the account within the same period.

The documents arose from submissions made by the Accountant-General of the Federation in February and June, 2008. Senators and industry stakeholders who have cited the documents are grieved that the approvals made by the former President and the former Vice-President were not utilised for the purpose of improving the country's aviation infrastructure as stipulated.

Senators are grieved that BASA funds which should ordinarily have been used for the improvement of the nation's airport infrastructure were used for hiring of aircraft and payment of pensions and what they cite as other irrelevances.

The Committee according to one source is also worried that" $3.149 million incurred in years 2002, 2003 and 2004 still do not have narration and the approving authority not known years after,'' one consultant who examined the submissions made by the Account

The President of the Senate, Senator David Mark while flagging off the public hearing into the utilization of the N19.5 billion aviation fund had warned those he alleged to be blackmailing the Committee to desist from their actions.

Jul 15, 2008, 12:55 PM
Martins and Police funds...


Police Equipment Fund Latest: How Martins inflated contract from N100m to N100bn - Witness - It's a lie, he's after my life, says Martins
Lanre Adewole, Abuja - 15.07.2008

THE trial of suspects in the alleged Police Equipment Fund (PEF) began on Monday with the first prosecution witness, Chief Godson Ewulum, alleging that the fund's coordinator, Kenny Martins, single-handedly inflated the projected fund for the project from N100 million to N100 billion.

Ewulum, who claimed to be part of the project from inception, told the Abuja High Court that Martins also usurped the position of former Police Affairs Minister, Broderick Bozimo, as the chairman of the fund, adding that Martins was only brought in to facilitate presidential support for the project, being an in-law of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Led in evidence by counsel for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Chile Okoroma, the witness further told the court that Martins was only brought in to facilitate the project.

According to Ewulum, "I was involved in the setting up of the Police Equipment Fund (PEF) sometime in 2004 with Prince Ibrahim Dumuje who is a friend of mine and invited me to share his thoughts with him alongside the late Evangel Agharite. I looked at the proposal and there was no doubt in my mind why Dumuje invited me to share his thoughts with him.

"One of such reasons I believe was because he knows that I have a very serious passion for the equipment of the police, and that I had a relationship with the then Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG) in charge of Operations, Mike Okiro," he added.

He further stated that "they had made some efforts to present the programme to the police that did not yield much results. I critically looked at the proposal and the first thing that came to my mind in spite of the laudable proposal was that it required huge sums of money as it was like a charity to assist one's country which means that you will not be working for payment.

"It means that you have to put some structures on the ground before realising the goals and I called for a working modality which includes that either I, Dumuje or Agharite be accommodated as directors in that company, but that did not go down well with Agharite who opted for an agreement, the company was Nigerslag LTD," he stated.The witness pointed out that "we then signed a tripartite agreement. After the agreement, we pursued the project of PEF which later became the Presidential Committee on Police Equipment Fund, but not without the efforts of Kenny Martins who I recruited to join the project that three of us started. I know of his relationship with the former President, Olusegun Obasanjo, as his former brother-in-law.

Ewulum further told the court that "it is pertinent to note that the project had suffered a setback due to the removal of Tarfa Balogun as the Inspector-General of Police (IGP). It was then that I told Martins about the PEF and that it might interest Obasanjo. I then presented the project and the proposal to him and he agreed to facilitate it and I mentioned my partners to him. He said that I know better as long as he is paid that he will see the project through.

"We arranged to present the project to Obasanjo in Abuja. Our former application was upgraded to the tune of N100 billion from N100 million as suggested by Martins as the project was initially looking at providing armoured vests for the police as they were being killed every day. At that time, I and Dumuje were financing all the trips to see Obasanjo and his Special Assistant, Andy Uba, Martins never contributed a kobo," he stated.

He noted that "the first letter for the upgrade was signed by Agharite. Unfortunately, he died in the Bellview air crash in 2005, and Dumuje then took over the signing of the letters. Shortly after all the approvals were gotten, I then called for accountability in the running of the fund. That was when I was locked away from the fund project.

"The Chairman of the fund was the then Minister of Police Affairs, Bozimo, Martins usurped his position and took over and before I could know it, he and Dumuje became directors in Nigerslag. "Five months after the death of Agharite, they opened an account with a bank and became signatories to all the funds accounts without a letter of authorisation from the fund."

Meanwhile, Martins had asked a Federal High Court in Abuja to compel the Inspector General of Police, Mr. Mike Okiro, to make public, the report of an investigation into an assassination attempt on his life by Ewulum.

Also, the plaintiff is seeking for an order of mandamus compelling Okiro, the Commissioner of Police, Abuja and the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) to immediately prosecute or set in motion the machinery for the prosecution of Ewulum for allegedly attempting to murder or assassinate him.

In the suit filed by his lawyer, Chief Mike Ozekhome, Chief Martins claimed that the deliberate stalling of the investigation and prosecution of Chief Ewulum on the alleged attempt on his life was unconstitutional, illegal, wrongful, unlawful, null and void and of no effect whatsoever.

He averred that the alleged stalling of investigation by police constituted a violation of section 33 (1) of the 1999 constitution and section 4 and of Police Act Laws of the Federation of Nigeria.
In a 27- paragraph affidavit in support of the suit, Chief Martins alleged that Okiro was a very close friend and ally of Chief Ewulum, hence the refusal to arrest him.

Specifically, Martins claimed that the police chief had nursed a desire to take over the Police Equipment Foundation with his bosom friend, Chief Ewulum, from him, adding that Okiro gave vent to the desire when he forcibly took over the communication and security unit of the foundation.

Jul 19, 2008, 08:53 AM
From Plateu...,the rank of Nigerias platoon of lootocrats contineu to grow:


Botmang, ex-Plateau gov, docked
• Placed under house arrest From GODWIN TSA, Abuja
Saturday, July 19, 2008

Former Governor of Plateau State, Chief Michael Botmang, has joined the league of past state executives standing trial over alleged corrupt practices. He was yesterday arraigned before a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for stealing the sum of N1.5 billion from the state coffers.

Botmang, who took over the reins of power from his former boss, Chief Joshua Chibi Dariye, who was impeached under controversial circumstances, is facing a 31-count charge of money laundering an offence punishable under section 14 (1) of the Money Laundering Act.

The former governor, who pleaded not guilty to all the charges, was denied bail on the grounds that his bail application was not formally presented before the court.
Justice Anwuli Chikere, however, provided a soft landing for the embattled former state chief executive by placing him under house arrest rather than in prison custody, in view of his ill health.

After his arraignment by the prosecution counsel, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs, counsel to the accused, Mr. Makus Saleh (SAN) moved an oral application praying the court to admit him on bail on grounds of ill- health.

The SAN told the court that his client, who was served with the charge sheet on Thursday, was seriously ill as he is suffering from diabetes, hypertension, gont, and chronic kidney disease, hernia.
He said the former governor was also undergoes dialysis twice a week, adding that without that, he found it difficult to eat.

The defence counsel said that in view of the exceptional circumstances of the case, the court should grant the oral application on very liberal terms so as to enable Botmang’s appearances in court.
Accordingly, he prayed the court to confine his client to his house, in view of his precarious health situation to enable him carry out his dialysis since the machine is in his house.
Responding to the oral bail application, the prosecution counsel noted that from the information received by the EFCC, in respect of the accused ill health, he could not withstand the pressure of the prison and consequently agreed that he should be placed under house arrest.

Jacobs noted that the EFCC does not have the facility to maintain the health of the accused person, who, he said, was released to them by his hospital for the sole purpose of taking his plea.
In her ruling, Justice Chikere refused the oral application, insisting on a formal one with all facts relating to the health condition of the accused person.

According to her, “this court cannot grant the oral application for bail. The accused person still has time to file a formal application including ill health as part of the reasons for bail.
“There is nothing exceptional about the case. It is purely a criminal trial and all necessary procedures must be followed and adhered to. However, the accused person is to be confined in his house at Zawani Village in Plateau State. This case is adjourned till October 8 and 9, 2008 for trial.”
Some of the charges against Botmang read as follows:

• That you, Chief Michael Botmang, while serving as the governor of Plateau State had, on November 25, 2006, transferred the sum of N500 million to personal account with the Union Bank, from the Plateau State government and hereby committed an offence punishable under section 14 (1) of the Money Laundering Act.

• That you, Chief Michael Botmang, while serving as the governor of Plateau State had on February 21, 2007 transfer the sum of N200 million to personal account with the Union Bank, from the Plateau State government and hereby committed an offence punishable under section 14 (1) of the Money Laundering Act.

• That you Chief Michael Botmang, while serving as the governor of Plateau State, had on April 3-30, 2007 illegally withdraw the sum of N397 million from the Plateau State government coffers to your personal account with the Union Bank, and hereby committed an offence punishable under section 14 [1] of the Money Laundering Act.
• That you, Chief Michael Botmang, while serving as the governor of Plateau State had, on February 5-8, 2007, illegally transferred the sum of N232 million from the Plateau State government coffers to your personal account with the Union Bank, and hereby committed an offence punishable under section 14 (1) of the Money Laundering Act.
At the end of the trial, the former governor, who was looking pale throughout the court session, was whisked away by security operatives in an ash Peugeot Expert bus with Nasarawa State registration number, AA 698 NBB.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/19072008/news/news3.html

Exposed! $800m Fraud Rocks PPMC - ...ICPC Moves In
Chris Agbambu, Abuja - 19.07.2008

The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), has commenced investigations into the alleged malpractices going on in Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC) which resulted to over $800 million fraud.

Informed source revealed that an aggrieved staff of the company had petitioned the commission over the atrocities going on backing it with relevant documents to buttress his case.
Among the complaints are round tripping of ships carrying fuel, deliberate delay in off-loading fuel, which results to about $300 per day demurrage.

The source also accused the officials of involvement in pipeline vandalization, arguing that some of the pipelines were deliberately vandalized, and orders placed for the equipment to repair them running into millions of naira, while these materials were in the store of PPMC.

It was revealed that the affected top officials would then turn around and pick the materials from the store, after alleging that orders had been placed for them abroad. Saturday Tribune gathered that the aggrieved staff, who was not comfortable with the deal, decided to petition the ICPC and bring all those involved to book.

The source said that ships carrying fuel were deliberately left unattended to for upwards of 30 days in order to incure demurrage which would be shared between the shipping company and officials of PPMC.
The petitioner alleged that the anomalies had been on for quite a long time without being detected.

Jul 20, 2008, 05:55 AM
Bode George on the run over his 84 billion naira NPA loot....


NPA Fraud: EFCC Launches Manhunt for Bode George
By Ndubuisi Ugah, 07.20.2008

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Indications emerged at the weekend that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), under its new chairman, Mrs Farida Waziri may have launched an intense manhunt for former Board Chairman, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Chief Olabode Ibiyinka George, over alleged N84billion financial improprieties perpetrated during his period as chairman of the parastatal.

THISDAY learnt last night that George case is inclusive of the many such high profile cases the commission is presently working on. Majority of such cases, THISDAY gathered were those left midway by the former administration at the commission.

A source who spoke to THISDAY under the condition of anonymity explained that the new leadership at EFCC has resolved to disappoint cynics who never believed in the competence of its chairman to successfully lead the brand new EFCC adding that the only way she can do this is to pursue those high profile cases that the former administration refused to prosecute

Specifically, the case of NPA which is said to be embarrassing the commission because of its handling by the former administration has been slated for review. Not just the NPA case, every such case has been propped up for thorough investigation and there is no going back

However, following a tip-off, THISDAY gleaned that George has since left the country and has refused to come home to confront the allegations against him. Although, he was said to have sneaked in and out of the country recently, George is said never to have stayed out of the country this long except during the reign of former maximum ruler, late Gen. Sani Abacha.
When contacted, EFCC spokesperson, Mr. Femi Babafemi who was not going to go into details of the commissions plans on its latest onslaught confirmed plans by the commission to open up cases classified as high profile of which he said NPA may not be unlikely. He said the commission is presently working on such cases, but details, he did not have.

We have a lot of high profile cases we are presently working on and his (George) own is not unlikely to be one of them, he said urging the media to patiently await the commissions next outing.

Twice, committees were set up by President Olusegun Obasanjo to investigate alleged fraud at NPA between 2001 and 2003 when George was the Board chairman. Both committees reportedly nailed the George-led NPA Board over what was described as mindless looting of the NPA.
In 2003, a committee was constituted by the president. The committee was headed by Mr. Mustapha Bukar from the Office of the Head of Service of the Federation. His report indicted the George-led Board and Management of the NPA for large scale fraud.

But George was quick to dismissing the report as a smear campaign? Although he did not offer explanation to the committees emphasis that rather than follow the normal channel of assigning responsibilities in the authority, the board, management, politicians and even the contractors resorted to using all kinds of ways to process contract proposals, thereby short-circuiting existing regulations and procedures.The Bukar report was however believed to have instigated The NEWS Magazine story on the scam at NPA. The NEWS edition of April 18, 2005, had given an account of how the board and management of NPA between 2001 and 2003, embarked on irresponsible spending, through fraud-ridden contracts, to bleed the authority of billions of naira and millions of dollars, pounds sterling and euros. But George has since taken The NEWS Magazine to court for alleged character assassination over its reportage of the alleged scam. The case is yet to be dispensed with.

It was against the backdrop of the noise generated by The NEWS report that the former president asked Ribadu to do a thorough job of investigating the NPA fraud scandal. Ribadu was assisted by U.J. Shuwa of the Federal Ministry of Transport; M.A. Bello from the Office of the Secretary to the Federal Government; J.O. Omotosho, representing the Ministry of Finance; Buba Gamawa, who works with the Head of the Federal Civil Service and Y.A. Olaleye of the Budget Monitoring and Price Intelligence Unit. Mrs. G.O. Ezekika of the Federal Ministry of Transport was the committees secretary.

The committee was mandated to conduct an in-depth investigation on all contracts awarded by the NPA from 2001 to 2003, and examine all outstanding bills from its creditors; ascertain whether or not such contracts were awarded in accordance with extant government rules and regulations governing the award of contracts; and identify the culprits and apportion blame as applicable.While submitting its committees report to the president on Tuesday, February 21, 2006, Ribadu, was said to have established that the board and management of NPA, during the period under review, are responsible for the flagrant violation of the extant government rules and regulations on award of contracts,thus confirming the board and management financial recklessness, disregard for Due Process guidelines, gross and massive inflation of contract prices and excessive contract splitting

The Ribadu report further noted that the NPA is regarded as one of the parastatals where irregularities and malpractices have become deeply entrenched? It also said among several discoveries that the NPA is plagued with massive corruption and inefficiency, especially in the award of contracts.

Jul 23, 2008, 06:45 AM
An inept and totally corrupt beuracracy..., makes you wonder what happens to "undiscovered funds"...


Reps discover unremitted N1.5 trillion FG's funds
Wednesday, July 23, 2008

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The House of Representatives yesterday made a shocking revelation that a whopping N1.5 trillion belonging to the Federal Government was yet to be remitted to the Federation Accounts by government ministries, departments and agencies between 2003 and 2008.

Closely followed was another disclosure by the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Alhaji Abubakar Yar'Adua, who said that the corporation spent $20.11 billion out of $77.031 it generated during the same period under review.

Chairman of the House Committee on Finance, Hon. John Enoh, while briefing some of the MDAs who came to testify before a public hearing said it was unfortunate that out of N3.6 trillion, N1.5 trillion was not remitted to the Federation Accounts.

While decrying the incident, Enoh lamented that his committee only received submissions from 60 per cent of the total MDAs saddled with the responsibility of collecting revenue for the Federal Government.
At the end of the investigations, he said that there was the possibility that the amount owed the Federal Government could go higher than what was discovered so far.

The investigation that had revealed the shortchanging of government was aimed at generating more revenue from internally generated sources than even what is being earned from the sales of crude oil.
Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Alhaji Yar'Adua, in his submission said his corporation was able to remit 56.221 billion US dollars into the Federation Accounts within the period under review.
He, however, told members of the committee that the corporation, under the Act establishing it has the powers to spend the 20.11 billion US dollars which he said comes under what is known in the corporation's accounting system as ‘'Cash Calls''.

On the high cost of diesel, the NNPC boss stated that since 2003 when the Federal Government deregulated the down stream of the oil sector, NNPC has been selling diesel at N61.1 while the same product sells up to N200 in the open market.
He admitted that there was crisis in the oil sector due to the decision of the Obasanjo administration to regulate and deregulate the down stream of the oil sector at the same time, which he noted put so much pressure on the NNPC.

"NNPC may collapse in the near future if we continue to sell diesel at N61.1. At the same time, companies in Nigeria are closing down due to the high cost of this product because due to lack of regular power supply in the country, 80 per cent of companies run on diesel and this is not good for our economy. I would like to appeal to members of this committee to put heads together with the executive arm of government so that we can find lasting solution to this,'' he stated.
Speaking on the state of refineries in the country, Alhaji Yar'Adua disclosed that Warri refinery was producing at 90 per cent installed capacity while Kaduna refinery produces at 70 to 80 per cent capacity.

He, however, stated that the Port Harcourt refinery was engulfed by a mysterious fire which damaged its central cooling system but quickly said that the debris had since been cleared and the refinery may start production next week.

"We have not yet reached the level of total removal of subsidy on petroleum products. I think it is better for us to continue to subsidize so that Nigerians are not allowed to suffer unnecessarily because any increase in the pump price of petroleum products affects all parts of the economy.

Earlier, the Corps Marshal and Chief Executive of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), Chief Osita Chidoka, told members of the committee that the commission realized the sum of N2.5 billion between 2003 and 2008 and remitted same into the federation accounts.

Jul 24, 2008, 06:34 AM

LINK: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2008/july/24/national-24-07-2008-002.htm

Alleged N12B fraud: EFCC quizzes Kogi speaker, SSG, 4 others
Thursday, July 24, 2008

Anti-graft operatives at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Wednesday interrogated six top officials of the Kogi State government including the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), and Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Clarence Olufemi.

Also quizzed at the commission's head office in Abuja, in a rigorous session, which lasted several hours, were the Head of Service, the state Accountant General, and the commissioners for Finance and Works. The six officials, who had earlier been invited to appear before the anti-graft agency, are being questioned on their roles in an alleged misappropriation of N12 billion.
EFCC spokesman, Femi Babafemi, who confirmed their invitation and interrogation, did not give further details. However, Daily Sun reliably gathered that the six top government functionaries were invited over a petition written by the Kogi State chapter of the Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP), alleging massive fraud and misappropriation of about N12 billion public funds.

"Yes, it is true that we invited the six officials of the Kogi State government to our Abuja headquarters for explanations over alleged misappropriation of a huge sum of money. As I speak with you, they are under interrogation. They would have to tell us all they know about the alleged funds," a senior officer at the EFCC who pleaded anonymity told Daily Sun.

At press time, the six officials were still being held, even as sources close to the commission said at the end of interrogation, only those with weak cases might be allowed to return to their homes, while others with strong cases against them would be detained and possible arraigned in court.
Even those sent to probe corrupt practices are now being probed for corruption...

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/24072008/news/news1.html

Power probe panel under probe - Over N100m bribe allegations
Bola Badmus and Idowu Samuel, Abuja - 24.07.2008

THE last may not have been heard about the crisis among members of the House of Representatives Panel that probed the $16 billion scandal in the power sector.

This is because the House of Representatives has ordered investigation into allegations that some members of the committee collected over N100 million as bribes in the course of their work.

Indeed, it was gathered that the committee on Ethics and Privileges of the House is to probe the allegation.

The House on Wednesday gave the nod to probe the allegation against the Ndudi Elumelu committee, following a fresh order of privilege raised on the floor by the Minority Leader, Honourable Muhammed Ali Ndume.

Speaker ‘Dimeji Bankole, while giving the order, said the role of the House of Representatives was clear on the issue, adding that whoever was found guilty would be dealt with.

"If we are going to ask after how government money was spent, we have to do it with clean hands," he said, adding that no matter the obstacles before the committee on power, its report would be laid on the table before the House.

He asked members of the House to remain focused and not be deterred by what people might say concerning issues before the House.

Ndume had raised the order while drawing the attention of the House to a publication in a weekly magazine which alleged that a contractor had allegedly given a bribe of N100 million to the power committee on their departure from Port-Harcourt airport, after the conclusion of the committee's tour to Rivers State.

The House Committee on Power had undertaken a tour of all the states of the federation to see the power projects based on claims by contractors on completion levels made before the committee during the public hearing earlier done in Abuja.

The Minority Leader, while speaking on the floor, said he had kept quiet for long and had even restrained himself from speaking on the crisis rocking the power committee as a representative of about 115 members of the House.

Ndume said he could not afford to keep quiet anymore on the issue of the power probe activities, saying it touched on the integrity of the whole House as well as that of individual members.

According to him, the motion moved by him then as leader of the minority to cause the House to investigate how the government spent $16 billion on power generation without any tangible result remained the most popular motion that the House had ever passed since inception.

He said it was very sad to hear of the ugly development in the committee that probed the spending, saying Nigerians might not know that as mover of the motion, he was not involved in all the controversies that enveloped the activities of the power committee of late.

Jul 25, 2008, 05:22 AM
Obasanjos/NNPC oil mess: Hundreds of millions of dollars missing.....


No open bid for oil block, House told
Friday, July 25, 2008

As the controversy surrounding the where abouts of $210 million raked from allocation of two oil blocks (OPL245 and 257) rages, the House of Representatives, probing the activities of Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and its subsidiaries, has heard that the Presidency controlled and gave out names of companies that should be awarded oil blocks.

Former Director of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) between 2001 and 2006, Mr. Macaulay Ofurhie, disclosed on Thursday there was no open biding for oil blocks, but only selective bidding authorized by the Presidency.

Ofurhie, who left DPR on retirement at the age of 60 years, said he came into the DPR in January 2001 from the NNPC explained that if there was any award of oil block, it was on ad- hoc basis and handled by the office of the special adviser to the president.

He was specific that there was no bid but marginal fields that were allocated by selective bidding.
"We had a mini bid or discretionary bid in October 2002, where they bid for OPL 256. It was a selective bidding where we had a letter from the presidential adviser on Petroleum and the letter was signed by Mr. Funso Kupolukun, the special assistant on Petroleum to the president.
"The letters were for bid on OPL 256 and we had some bid list that originated from there and we now processed the bid and we had only two bidders.

But he said in 2004, there was an open bid that was advertised and promoted and it is marketed round, adding that what happened in 2002 was not digital, while that of 2005 was more digital in operation where winners were given letters of offer on the spot.
For the selective bid, he said only two companies, Ocean Energy Nigeria and Statoil, were short listed.
On the approvals to award the blocs won by Ocean Energy, he also disclosed that, "it was a superior approval. I remember, I requested for that and I got it. The letter came with a list and we had the option of adding.

"We were not comfortable with the list and I remember, I told him if we could make it more robust, he explained, which he said he got an affirmative response."
He said main criteria used were the signature bonus, which was 70 percent and the remaining 30 percent for technical expertise.
The committee was told by DPR that there are inconsistencies in the record of payment that was made available to the House and asked that they be given more time to resolve the issue.
It was discovered that the wired payment for $2.5 million paid for OPL 257 in June 2003 by Vintage Oil spent five years before it was receipted on July 8, 2008.

According to Ofurhie, Vintage which made the payment "was not approved since it was not technically competent and they did not have any track record. There prospectus was also not known and they were asked to pair with Exxon Mobil. But Mobil rejected the pairing."

The committee also discovered that Shell paid $210 million in December 2003 as signature bonus, but only the sum of $1 million was reflected in the records, while Statoil also made a payment in 2003 but the receipt was issued in 2004. The controversial OPL 245 won by Malabo Oil, it was discovered that while $210 million was paid, it was later withdrawn and awarded to Shell which, paid $1 million as commitment fee before Malabo went to court.

Mr Babatunde Ajimoti of DPR told the ad-hoc committee on oath that he was sure that Shell paid the money, which has been placed in an Escrow account pending the resolution of the suit in the court.

Jul 28, 2008, 04:59 AM
Shocking Revelations in The Ministry Of Foreign Affairs......

LINK:http://www.guardiannewsngr.com/news/article05//indexn2_html?pdate=280708&ptitle=Reps'%20panel%20queries%20ministry%20over%2 0N10b

Reps' panel queries ministry over N10b
From John-Abba Ogbodo, Abuja

REVELATIONS on issues of finance and accountability never cease shocking. The latest coming from a House of Representatives' panel is pointing out failings at the distinguished Ministry of Foreign Affairs when at the weekend it emerged that the ministry has been defaulting in remitting revenues to the federal treasury.

In fact, House of Representatives Committee on Finance investigating revenues that accrued to the Federal Government since 1999 has queried the ministry, saying that more than N10 billion of the revenue generated by the ministry was yet to be remitted to the coffers.

Also, the House Committee on Public Petitions has summoned the Minister of Commerce, Charles Ugwuh, and the Director General of Bureau for Public Enterprises (BPE), Mrs. Irene Chigbue, over an alleged invasion of the Lagos International Trade Fair Complex in Lagos in a bid to concession it.

The chairman of the Finance Committee, John Enoh, told the officials of the ministry led by the Permanent Secretary, Baba Kaigama, that records at the panel's disposal showed that through its foreign missions between 1999 and 2008, it earned a total revenue of N11, 854,673,360.45 within the period but remitted only N1, 356,048,233.09 leaving a balance of about N10,293,824,127.36.

The chairman, therefore, asked the officials to go back and put the proper records in place for the minister to appear before the committee.

"The committee is not satisfied with the explanation and therefore, we would like the ministry to go back and offer explanation that will help this committee. We will like the minister to come and tell us about the funds yet to be remitted," he said.

On its part, the petitions committee directed Ugwuh and Chigbue to appear before it tomorrow over an alleged forced attempt to give out the Trade Fair Complex to the concessionaire, Aulik Nigeria Ltd.

The committee's chairman, Mr. Maduabum(Nnewi-North/Nnewi South/ Ekusigo, Anambra State), said the House would not hesitate to recommend appropriation sanctions against BPE if the allegation was confirmed.

His words: "We are going to hold BPE responsible if there is a breakdown of law and order there (at the complex). We would see what we can do on our own part to avoid a total breakdown of law and order."

The committee had written to BPE, saying: "At an investigative hearing on the concession of Lagos International Trade Fair Complex (LITFC) held on July 16, 2008 at the National Assembly Complex, the House Committee on Public Petitions resolved that given the facts that emerged from the hearing which require further clarification from the BPE, the Bureau stay further action on the proposed hand-over of the LITFC to the concessionaire pending the determination of the petition of the Stakeholders' Forum of LITFC. The purpose of this letter is to convey the said resolution of the committee for your information and necessary action. Please accept the highest regard."

The committee had been informed by the LITFC's Director-General, Mr. David Adulugba, who represented Ugwuh, of the raid by BPE.

Jul 28, 2008, 04:17 PM
At The NNPC , A Tip Of The Iceberg;Billions missing...

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art2008072814353056

Reps seek ‘missing' N57.5bn excess crude proceeds
By Chiawo Nwankwo, Abuja
Published: Monday, 28 Jul 2008

The House of Representatives ad-hoc committee probing the oil sector may this week open the financial records of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee to resolve puzzles over N57.5bn excess crude oil proceeds that was unaccounted for.

The amount involves 2000, 2001 and 2002 proceeds. Details of the discrepancies in remittances and receipts from 2003 to date are yet to be made public.

Our correspondent gathered that President Umaru Yar'Adua had directed that these discrepancies be sorted out without delay.

Details of one of the petitions submitted to the committee chaired by Mr. Igo Aguma showed that a shortfall of N51.5bn was reported by FAAC in 2002.

"In 2002, while NNPC claimed to have paid a total of N241, 353, 852,300, FAAC confirmed a receipt of N189, 892,249,812. Explanation is required for the shortfall of N51.461bn," the petition stated.

Also, there was N4.13bn difference between what the NNPC claimed it paid into the Federation Account in 2000 and what FAAC said it received. While the NNPC said it paid N96.3bn in 2000, FAAC acknowledged receipt of N92.146bn.

Similarly, the NNPC reportedly paid N135.25bn in 2001 but FAAC claimed that it received N133.633bn.

The Minister of State for Finance, Mr. Remi Babalola, in a telephone interview with our correspondent on Sunday in Abuja confirmed that discrepancies existed between remittances and receipts.

Babalola chairs the Federation Account Allocation Committee, which disburses distributable pool revenue to the three tiers of government monthly.

He explained that the challenges posed by the shortfalls made him to seek Yar'Adua's permission to establish what he called "post-mortem team" to examine NNPC's remittances.

He explained that the team comprised representatives of Accountants-General of the 36 states of the federation and their federal counterparts.

Babalola, who explained that the team "reports back to us", added that it was the Auditor-General of the Federation that audited the finances of the NNPC.

The minister said, "There is no way we can reassure that what the NNPC said it paid into the Federation Account is true (what it should pay)."

Babalola added that he got the Auditor-General of the Federation to begin work on the NNPC records immediately he got the President's nod to do so.

"He (AG) has not got back to me. In the past, his office had problems auditing the NNPC.

"We keep on having differences between what the NNPC said it remitted to the Federation Account and what is being received by the FAAC," he said.

One of the memoranda submitted to the panel stated that NNPC received 121,895,885 barrels of crude oil per day for domestic consumption at a price of $18 per barrel.

According to the document, the quantity is 445,000bpd more than 121,485,000bpd needed by the NNPC.

Other anomalies stated in the memo include under-stating the cost of crude supplied to the corporation, over-stating of payments and inaccurate records.

Moves by the AG to audit NNPC's accounts were stalled during Mr. Funsho Kupolukun's tenure as its Group Managing Director.

A representative of the AG had told the House Committee on Public Accounts chaired by Alhaji Mohammed Usman that NNPC insisted on providing a training for federal auditors before it could make its records available to them.

The AG, according to his representative, turned down the offer.

The committee had on Wednesday declared $210m of oil block proceeds paid by Shell Ultra-Deep and Zebraiuk missing.

Similarly, the DPR told the panel that former President Olusegun Obasanjo approved $17m capital expenditure for it despite the fact that the 2002 national budget provided for its capital votes for that year.

Yar'Adua had in May ordered one of the Joint Ventures partners to return $1.9bn being the country's share of revenue kept outside the Federation Account since 1993.

Jul 29, 2008, 06:55 AM
Messy oil deals...,billions missing...

LINK: http://www.guardiannewsngr.com/news/article05//indexn2_html?pdate=290708&ptitle=DPR%20declares%20documents%20on%20oil%20blo cks%20missing

DPR declares documents on oil blocks missing
From John Abba-Ogbodo, Abuja

THE committee of the House of Representatives investigating the operations of the oil sector in the country from 1999 to date was yesterday told that essential projects tied to allocation of oil blocks have had their completion date extended from 2007 to 2013. The committee was also told by Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) that some sensitive documents relating to 2005 oil block allocations were missing.

The acting director of DPR, Alhaji Mohammed Aliyu Sabo, who disclosed this at the sitting of the panel said they had carried out a search for the documents in the office but could not locate them in their files. "We can only give out what we have and cannot give what we don't. We can't find some of the documents," he told the committee.

What also irked the committee was that Tony Chukwueke, a director of DPR, who is on compulsory leave had told the panel that the department put a total of 44 oil blocks on sale but the report presented by DPR showed only 36 blocks. Consequently, the committee said eight oil blocks and their proceeds were missing from the record. "The report presented shows a total of 36 oil blocks instead of the 44 that the director said. It means eight blocks are somewhere", the committee chairman said.

Chukwueke explained that it was possible that some bidders who were offered did not make payment and therefore, they would not be reflected in the report. His words: "I have never told you that there are 44 blocks; 44 blocks were awarded but there were some people who did not pay. That must have been the difference. Let me come back tomorrow. I will consult with my people and get back. Let me withdraw my statement. The Production Sharing Contracts (PSC) have not been signed. I can't recall any one on which PSC has been signed".

The chairman of the committee, Igo Aguma, said the panel was taking note of such withdrawal with a view to taking appropriate action at the right time.

The committee also noted that some signature bonuses were paid in naira contrary to the provision of the guidelines, adding that from the records available to them, there was a short-fall in the payment of signature bonus of $1.6bn in the proceeds of signature bonuses. According to the committee, the records of the signature bonuses in 2005 showed a total of over $2 billion but only the sum of $1.6 billion was paid while some payments were made in local currency. The director admitted that some payments were made in local currency but that he was directed by the Minister of State for Petroleum to do so.
"I received signature bonus in naira because of instructions from above", he said.

Asked why a company named 321 Equator Exploration Nigeria Ltd got the oil block called 321, he said he needed to make further consultations, adding "the ministry issued instruction to us to give right of first refusal while the bidding was going on."

Chukwueke reiterated that some oil blocks were awarded after the bid rounds based on the instruction of the minister. "We were instructed by the minister to award OPL 236 to Oando", he said.

The committee noted that some companies were given oil blocks without knowledge of their local content but the director explained that the selection of local content vehicle was only after a bid had been won. He added that those companies were those merged by the ministry but the committee insisted that the companies that won OPL 332, particularly Sahara Energy, did not submit application for the bid.

At this stage, the committee asked the DPR to supply comprehensive information on OPL 236 and all other files that were discretionarily given out.

The committee also asked Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to submit a situation report on the investments in the downstream sector so far by those given oil blocks, stressing that it became imperative because it was used for the status of first right of refusal. The head of legal unit, NNPC, Sena Anthony, explained that in respect of OPL 231 and 323, the agreement was for them to have plants in Kaduna and Abuja and it was for 18 months.

The committee, however, noted that the period of 18 months had elapsed and all she could say was that they had only acquired land and right of way. A member of the committee, Bethel Amadi, informed the committee that the period of the project had been extended to 2013 instead of the early part of 2007. Ckukwueke explained that the period of 18 months was for the take-off of the project and not completion.

A member of the panel, Bethel Amadi, disclosed that the period had been adjusted to 2013. The committee was also miffed that there was no guarantee attached to the agreement.

The committee also noted that Elf Petroleum Ltd paid the sum of $30 million for an oil block, but the block was not mentioned. The director asked for time to explain. He also said: "Some signature bonuses were not paid for years and we have problems with them. For the 2005, we ensured that all the signature bonuses were paid. All that were signed were paid. There was a letter asking me to give a discount on OPL 231".

The committee further expressed worry over the process of the 2005 bid rounds. "A company with a particular director got many juicy blocks. It is either collusion or such company must be working for some people somewhere. You could see one name in about seven companies. You have Nuel OJ everywhere. In some cases, three companies with one director bidding for the same block.. It also puts a question on the legal department. Reasons such as non-disclosure of directors, sharp practices were given for denying some bidders oil blocks while some companies with such records were given blocks. Some of the companies were not pre -qualified and some of them do not have application forms. These are contained in your guidelines and yet got allocation. Why? "the committee queried.

In response, Chukwueke said the DPR recommended that those who did not submit identities of directors should be disqualified. "We did not have time to go to CAC. The ministry said we should allow merger of companies. Because of the merger programme, we decided to give conditions for them to encourage local content. Seven companies, for instance, came out of the merger. One important thing was that because of the number we had to allow Local Content Vehicles and at the end, 45 emerged," he said.

However, the committee demanded further explanation in writing on the companies that won oil blocks and their promoters between 1999 and 2008. "It should have the names of directors, shareholders and changes in such structures", the panel said.

On whether the DPR took independent decision in all the bid rounds, Chukwueke said: In all issues, the DPR was not independent but depended on instructions from the ministry because we are under the ministry. There is no due diligence report as far as the issue of CAC was concerned. Our lawyers went to CAC with a sample."

A lot of oil companies, including Obekpa Petroleum Company, Petrodena and Starcrest Investment Ltd. came to the committee with complaints of unfair treatment in the allocation of oil blocks.

Starcrest Investment Ltd. represented by its secretary, Emefor Etudo, alleged that about 10 powerful individuals connived and cornered $35 million.

"We have a record of money that exchanged hands. They used one company which is non-existent called Chjna, the Petroleum Corporation. They used funny means to seize Opl 229. On August 6, 2006, Tony issued them OPL 2911 and committed himself to make another offer in the name of Starcrest Nigeria Energy. The pay master was Addax Petroleum. On June 24, 2006, Addax paid $13 million without taking part in the 2006 bid round. They paid for a block that they did not take part in the bid round. One Iliasu handled the case as IPO. They used $35 million of other country's money. Please, summon Diamond Bank Port Harcourt, you will get further facts. The issue of $35 million is on the Internet. The company was not in operation when the right of first refusal was purportedly granted. The Minister of State for petroluem Odein Ajumogobia, without going through the petition, told us that we have no case. Starcrest Energy Nigeria paid processing fee, application and got the oil block all on May 19, 2006," he alleged.

Jul 30, 2008, 06:29 AM
Still on the Aviation Probe..

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/30072008/news/news7.html

Aviation scam: EFCC arrests NAMA director
Lanre Adewole, Abuja - 30.07.2008

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arrested a Director of the National Airspace Management Agency {NAMA}, Mrs. Folake Saint Martins-Daniel.

Commission's spokesperson, Mr. Femi Babafemi, confirmed the arrest, saying that, "her arrest has to do with aviation probe" Daniel, who is the head of the agency's legal services, is currently being detained in the commission's head office in Wuse II, Abuja.

A source told the Nigerian Tribune that she was arrested in connection with two controversial Jeeps, which were said to have been used in bribing the agency's top official by Avsatel; the company that got the contracts through which the N19.5 billion fraud was allegedly committed.

Two former Aviation ministers, Dr. Babalola Borishade and Chief Femi Fani-Kayode as well as a former Director General of the agency, Roland Iyayi are currently being tried by the anti-corruption agency over alleged involvement in the alleged scandal.

Daniel, who is the first granddaughter of former Western region governor, Ooni of Ife, Oba Adesoji Aderemi, is alleged to have known about how the Jeeps, which are exhibits in the trial, got back to the agency's custody since July 2007.

Jul 30, 2008, 01:19 PM
LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article04

Oil Blocks: Nigeria Lost $248m In 2000 - Reps
By Festus Owete Assistant Editor, Abuja

Federal lawmakers have again heard a familiar story of how Nigeria lost over $248 million in the 2000 bid for oil blocks, even with cries of shortage of funds to provide decent living standards in a country awash with the liquid gold.

Former Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Group Managing Director, Funso Kupolokun, on Tuesday told the House of Representatives Committee probing the corporation that the loss arose from upfront payment during the bid round.

He said out of the $627 million expected from the round, $248 million cannot be accounted for up till now.

Committee Chairman, Igo Aguma, noted that the problem started with Shell which bid for Oil Prospecting Licence (OPL) 250 at $200 million, but paid only $75 million.

The committee discovered that Shell withdrew because OPL 250 was not successful after drilling.

"From our own analysis only $7 million was collected and in four years since that round only $222 million has been collected out of the $627 million expected. Taking into cognisance that the OPL 250 has been stopped, Nigeria still has an outstanding debt of $248 million yet to be paid in 2008," Aguma added.

He reminded Kupolokun that his action cost Nigeria $125 million after he agreed that the payment for blocks should be staggered and that Shell be allowed to pay only $75 million.

But Kupolokun argued that everything that was done, including the staggered payment, was approved by former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Former Presidential Adviser on Petroleum, Rilwanu Lukman, told the committee that the 2000 bid round was based on three criteria, and "I assure you that we followed due procedure as much as we could."

The lawmakers equally heard that Transcorp used its allotment of OPL 281 as collateral when it acquired the Nigeria Telecommunications Limited (NITEL).

A member of the committee, Halims Agoda, while interrogating the Director of Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), Tony Chukwueke, said it is shocking that Transcorp presented the block to acquire NITEL.

Chukwueke replied that though he could not speak for Transcorp, he would be surprised if it did so because it made only a partial payment, which is why the block has not been returned to the basket.

Jul 31, 2008, 06:32 AM
This must be the mama of all corruptions...

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=118371

Revealed: $2bn Oil Block Sold for $5m..NNPC, DPR officials may be prosecuted
From Stanley Nkwazema in Abuja, 07.31.2008

For selling a national asset for mere pittance, the House of Representatives Committee probing the oil sector may resolve to recommend for prosecution officials of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and Directorate of Petroluem Resources (DPR).

The issue at stake is the sale of oil block OML 65 which was later renamed OPL 298 for $5million, after the Nigerian Petroluem Development Company had invested $2billion on the development of the block, to the Chinese National Petroleum Company (CNPC).

This is coming on a day the immediate past Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petrolueum Corporation (NNPC) and former Special Assistant to former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Petroleum Matters, Engineer Funso Kupolokun, admitted before the House Committee that the revocation of OPL 242 was carried out in error.

The Committee berated the NNPC for allegedly selling off a national asset for $5 million when the OML 65 was already producing so much and the NPDC had invested over $2 billon in the block

Co-chairman of the committee, Leo Ogo said: "they all collaborated with the NNPC, Chinese, and the NPDC to sell a national asset. Our secondary interest is the national asset. You people knew what you are doing. The well sold for $5 million. I will not be a part of this. The parliament will not be part of it. It is a shame that people entrusted with national assets should fritter it a way for a pittance. We will call for prosecution of the parties".

"There is a massive disconnect between the NNPC and the DPR. There is a great national disservice. The NPDC man has been misleading this House on a wild goose chase. There is a confidentiality agreement and he has never seen the document".

The Chinese company, however, stated that China National Petroleum Company won the block OPL 298 and OPL 471 during the 2006 Nigeria mini bid round held by DPR and signed the corresponding Production Sharing Contracts in the name of its subsidiary CNODC with the NNPC on April 23, 2007 and ratified by the Minister of Energy and took effect same day.
The Company however said that "for the purpose of initiating the petroleum operation, we have continually applied to the NNPC for the transfer of the related data and facilities and the control of the block. We equally asked for the Presidents attention through the Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria on March 2008 unfortunately our request was refused without any excuse".

The officials of the CNODC also stated that: The letter contained that we should go to OML 65 and start work and I am here to submit that letter. Mr Adeyemo was the Executive Director of NPDC as at that time and we even collected data from them. Secondly the issue of signature bonus we paid $30, 100, 00 m. There is a downstream commitment for a refinery and there was no lead time.

Kupolokun, who was interfacing with the committee yesterday afternoon for the third time in three days at the National Assembly said "Mr Chairman you would need to protect me. The madam came with what Kupolokun did. I did what I consider the best thing to be done under the circumstances. Obekpa put up for the bid and won fair and square, they had a partner that was to pay for the block. DPR recommended to me and I checked but was not satisfied with what I saw".

"Obekpas partner were in Shallow waters and I could not pair them in Deep waters. We were trying to bring in Petrobas and Petronas. They put in for three blocks and lost. We had Obekpas partner not financially strong. I recommended to Mr President that we should pair Obepka with Petronas. And Mr President concurred. I got a call from the VP of Petronas and found at they could not play in the business and I asked them to put it in writing", he said.

"Then came CREP together with Obekpa and I asked them to work together and they agreed. We now said Ocean Energy should have 75, Obekpa 12.5 and CREP 12.5%. I saw the letter of revocation.
"The DPR should know what transpired. If DPR had advised me that would not have happened. Agreed that the revocation was done in error because DPR did not advise me correctly. If they have, I don't think that they would have been revoked".

Jul 31, 2008, 04:58 PM
Alleged 10.8 billion fraud in Alieros Kebbi State..., EFCC/ICPC Refuses To Investigate....

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=118356

N10.2bn Fraud: Court Summons Aliero, EFCC, ICPC
From Funso Muraina in Abuja, 07.31.2008

A Federal High Court in Abuja has summoned the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) and the former governor of Kebbi State Adamu Aliero over alleged N10.2 billion fraud in the state.

Justice Adamu Bello summoned the two anti-corruption agencies to explain why they have failed to investigate Aliero over the alleged fraud.
The order of the court followed an ex-parte application by an indigene of the state, Alhaji Sani Dododo, for an order of mandamus compelling EFCC and ICPC to investigate the allegations.

The applicant's lawyer, Mr Victor Ekim, told the court that the two anti-corruption agencies shirked their official responsibilities by their failure to investigate three separate petitions on the alleged fraudulent activities filed against the ex-governor.

The three petitions respectively dated December 2006, February 2007 and August 2007 were authored by Dododo, Alhaji Abubakar Kane and Alhaji Mungadi.
In the petitions directed to EFCC and ICPC, they alleged sundry corrupt practices against Aliero and diversion of over N10.2 billion from the state's treasury while he was the governor.

The petitions of 247 pages chronicled a comprehensive list of financial misappropriation, contract scam, inflation of contract sum and payments for non-existent or non-executed contracts in Kebbi. EFCC and ICPC have a duty under the various statutes establishing them to investigate, make public the results of such investigation and prosecute the former governor if found culpable.

They have, however, refused, failed and neglected to carry out their duties in line with the various statutes establishing them despite several demands by the petitioners,'' Ekim told the court.

After listening to the submission, Justice Bello, in his ruling granted leave to the applicant for the judicial review of the actions of the EFCC and ICPC.
The judge ordered the respondents to appear before the court on August 12 for their defence.

The applicant was also directed to serve the respondents with all the court processes and the hearing notices.
How they blew 112 billion naira at NITEL.....

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=13308&Itemid=43

Senate to reopen NITEL probe over fresh N112bn fraud
Written by Emmanuel Aziken
Thursday, 31 July 2008

*Transcorp welcomes probe of Pentacsope

The Senate is to re-open enquiry into the management and sale of NITEL following fresh revelations of fraud by officials of the Obasanjo administration who allegedly blew N112 billion of the company’s funds.

The chairman of the Senate Committee on Communications Senator Sylvester Anyanwu who disclosed this in Abuja said the probe of the former single national carrier was also upon disclosures of a conspiracy by vested interests in the sector to kill NITEL.

Senator Anyanwu alleged that the worst era for NITEL was when it was managed by Pentascope, which he said filtered away N112 billion of the company’s funds. He alleged that Pentascope the supposedly Dutch registered company was registered on a public holiday by two fronts who eventually prevailed on former President Olusegun Obasanjo to dump the company on Transcorp.

The proposed Senate probe would be the second in recent times following an earlier one by the House of Representatives which ended with the indictment of the former Director General of the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Mallam Nasir El-Rufai. The indictment was eventually quashed by the courts.

“So much happened in NITEL and Nigerians were totally short changed. And we think it is the responsibility of the legislature to ensure that those who killed NITEL do not go scot free,’’ Senator Anywanwu said.

“Nigeria made too much investment in NITEL to let it go like that. It is not a witch hunt. We must begin to ask questions because that’s the only way we can move forward,’’ Senator Anyanwu said.
“If they do such things and get away with it without anybody asking questions it will be business as usual and tomorrow he becomes a warlord having short changed the country,’’ Anyanwu added.

“We have been doing some investigations and getting a lot of information about what has happened in NITEL from 1999…but the worst era is the period of Pentascope getting involved in NITEL. It was a total, complete fraud,’’ Anyanwu said.

“We have been getting information, we have been gathering information on what happened. NITIEL under PENTASCOPE and the process by which BPE sold NITEL to PENTASCOPE was terrible.’’

Alleging renewed efforts by some vested interests to get a chunk of NITEL, he said:
“Why I am talking to you now is that a lot of people who were part of this are now also putting themselves together trying to go through the back door to take over NITEL especially financial institutions.

“Let me give you an example, NITEL under PENTASCOPE in less than six months borrowed N40 billion from the banking sector. They have more than N13 billion in treasury bills I am not even talking about the N59billion it was supposed to have made within that period. These are the things we want to probe.

“When BPE sold to PENSTASCOPE which was registered on a public holiday by only two men as a company by two young consultants and then when they saw that they couldn’t run it wrote to the President that the company could not do it after they have squandered all the money. That was the time when the question of bringing in TRANSCORP came up,” he said.

Questioning the series of claims on NITEL by some financial institutions and stakeholders of the company, Senator Anyanwu said: “Where were these financial institutions, where were the auditors who were auditing NITEL at the time? NCC has its own question to answer. At the time, BPE was responsible for the sale and privatization of all the government parastatals including NITEL. The regulatory body will have its own questions to answer.

“What I am worried about is that some of these financial institutions who are now putting resources together under the pretext that NITEL is owing them and therefore they want to clamp down on NITEL they were part and parcel of what happened. Government is not going to allow them otherwise we are going to expose all of them because we have some information; this is a very serious issue and I tell you; as soon as the Senate reconvenes there will be a very serious public hearing on this issue.’’

“We will not fold our arms as legislators and allow NITEL to go under,’’ Anyanwu vowed.
Alleging internal collaboration to undermine the former single national carrier, he said:

“Even NITEL workers themselves, the worst that is going on now is illegal connection on the interconnectivity. Because NITEL has no billing system, the guy who is in charge of finance in NITEL office sits down and writes a bill and gets himself or herself sorted out. What is supposed to come into NITEL is not coming to NITEL the workers are not being paid they are being owed for months while a few individuals are making away with the nation’s wealth. It’s serious.”
Expounding on the alleged conspiracy against NITEL, he said:

“Every day what I hear is that NITEL is owing me, NITEL is owing me. How does NITEL owe you? NITEL has less than one hundred thousand lines working. How much can NITEL be owing you on interconnectivity? And the troublesome part of this issue is, do you know the volume of traffic that goes out of this country every day on international calls and those coming in?’’

“Have you wondered how these calls are being settled? Because we don’t have a billing system we don’t even have a way of knowing how much to bill because of the inefficiency of NITEL staff and we keep passing bulk and even government officers aiding and abetting this fraud. What I will advise those who want to come through the back to buy NITEL is that we are not going to fold our arms to let this company go under,” he said.

Transcorp welcomes probe of Pentacsope
The Proposed hearing by the senate committee on communications on what got Nitel to its present state validates Transcorp’s position that there has been a systematic and crimial deterioration and management of Nitel prior to Transcorp take over.

It will be recalled that only two days ago, the new Nitel management under the guidance of Transcorp began a verification exercise to determine authentic users of Nitel’s SAT 3 services. The effort which began at Colonades Hotel Ikoyi, is reported to be yielding fruitful results as some subscribers have stepped forward to make commitments to pay for services that they had been using.

This is a welcome development says Tom Iseghohi, Chairman Nitel, adding thatthe senate must be commended for their efforts.

Aug 1, 2008, 11:53 AM
On Iyabo Obasanjo/Grange Ministry of Health scam...


N300m Scam: Iyabo Obasanjo, Grange Have Case to Answer

From Funso Muraina in Abuja, 08.01.2008

Justice Salisu Garba of a high court of the Federal Capital Territory yesterday said former Minister of Health, Prof. Adenike Grange, Senator Iyabo Obasanjo-Bello and nine others have a case to answer in the N300 Ministry of Health unspent budgetary allocation scam.

Obasanjo-Bello, however, who spoke through her counsel, Mr. Joel Akomolafe, said she would proceed to the Appeal Court to challenge the ruling of the court.

We are definitely going to appeal the ruling. It cannot stand at the appeal. We insist that our client cant be tried based on the charges before the court. In the next few days, we will appeal this ruling.Akomolafe said.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had dragged Obasanjo-Bello and 11 others to court for allegedly holding on to N10 million despite knowing that the money was stolen.

The Senator challenged the propriety of the charge against her. In the objection, she argued that she had no case to answer over the N10 million that was given to her committee by the Health Ministry.

Obasanjo-Bello, the Senate Committee Chairman on Health and her Committee members had spent the N10milion on a trip to Ghana to perform legislative oversight functions on the ministry.

The EFCC, in its argument against the objection, said Obasanjo-Bello was properly charged because she deliberately held on to the N10 million, even when her counterpart in the House of Representatives returned same when the scam reportedly broke out.

Obasanjo-Bellos counsel, Mr Adebayo Olanipekun, SAN, had told the court at the last sitting that available documents showed that the committee had embarked on the Ghana trip before the source of the money was made known to the accused.

Olanipekun had said Obasanjo-Bello had no case to answer based on the following grounds: That the charge against her was defective; due process of law was not followed; no prima facie case was placed before the court to warrant any charge; organisation of retreat was and is still lawful; she never handled N10 million belonging to the Ministry of Health; the sum of N10 million paid to the Senate Committee on Health by the Senate was received by the Secretary and expended on the retreat in which all the members of the committee participated and not Obasanjo-Bello alone personally.

But Justice Garba in his ruling on the application said a prima-facie case had been established against the Senator and other accused persons in the case.
Haruna under "arrest" for corruption...


EFCC Arrests Boni Haruna
By Tokunbo Adedoja, 08.01.2008

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) last night arrested former Governor of Adamawa State, Mr Boni Haruna, over allegations of corruption while at the helm of affairs of the state between 1999 and 2007.

EFCC sources told THISDAY last night that Haruna, an associate of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, was arrested at his residence in Abuja along with a member of the state House of Assembly.

As at the time of filing this report, Haruna and the legislator were still undergoing interrogation at the commissions head office in Abuja. When THISDAY contacted the commissions spokesman, Mr Femi Babafemi, he confirmed Harunas arrest but declined further comments on the issue. It was however gathered that he may be arraigned in court today.

Only recently, the State Governor, Admiral Murtala Nyako (rtd), said the state would invite the anti-graft commission to look into allegations of diversion of public funds for personal use by the administration of Haruna.

His remarks came on the heels of the findings of a team of chartered auditors commissioned by the state government to look into its account. The report of the auditors was said to have indicted Haruna administration.

Nyako had said: "Following complaints from highly placed indigenes of Adamawa State against the Boni Administration, we commissioned a team of auditors to look into our books last year and has now submitted its report with colossal sums of money missing. It is only reasonable and in accordance with the laws of the land that we invite the EFCC to use its good offices to recover the people's money".

Also in September 2006, Haruna was one of the 15 state governors indicted by the anti-graft commission, which was then under the chairmanship of Mallam Nuhu Ribadu.

While appearing before the Senate in plenary, Ribadu reeled out names of the indicted (ex)governors which he said included : Orji Kalu (Abia),Boni Haruna (Adamawa), Chris Ngige (former governor, Anambra), Ayo Fayose (Ekiti), Chimaroke Nnamani (Enugu), Saminu Turaki (Jigawa), Muhammed Lawal (ex-governor, Kwara), Abubakar Audu (ex-governor, Kogi), Ahmed Makarfi (Kaduna), Adamu Abdullahi, Attahiru Bafarawa and Jolly Nyame.

Commenting on the indictment of Haruna, Ribadu had told the Senate that based on the Petition received from Senator Paul Wanpana, national vice-chairman PDP and 19 Local Governments were indicted for involvement in high-scale corruption. He also said arrangements had been concluded to charge Haruna and Commissioner for LG and Chieftaincy Affairs to court. Some of the indicted former governors are already undergoing trial.
On Obasanjos illegal deduction of thrillions from the federation account..

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=13314&Itemid=43

Withdrawal of N2.2trn from Federation Account: Court rules on RMFAC suit Oct. 23

Written by Ise-Oluwa Ige
Thursday, 31 July 2008

A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja yesterday fixed October 23, this year for judgment in a suit by the Revenue Mobilisation and Fiscal Commission (RMFAC) challenging ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo-led Federal Government over illegal deduction of a whopping sum of N2.2 trillion from the Federation Account, in two years, contrary to the provisions of the 1999 constitution.
The trial high court judge, Justice Adamu Bello, fixed the date for judgment yesterday after parties in the case adopted their written addresses in the matter.

RMFAC, Vanguard recalls, had dragged the Federal Government to court over what it called the breach of the 1999 constitution by its deduction of about N2.2trillion from the Federation Account to run some of its agencies.

The commission which came to court with various documentary evidence to back up its claim begged for an order declaring that the deductions were not only illegal and unconstitutional but that entire sum illegally deducted must be refunded into the Federation Account with immediate effect.

Part of the monies illegally deducted by the Federal Government from the Federation Account were allegedly used to run some of its projects and agencies including the National Integrated Power Plants; the Nigerian Railways Co-Operation project; the Nigerian Customs Service; the Federal Inland Revenue Service and the Paris and London Club debt Percentage Commission and payments.

RMFAC is of the opinion that government agencies like Nigerian Customs Service and the Federal Inland Revenue Service are not entitled to direct allocations from the Federation Account being not a Federal, state or local council which can statutorily benefit from the account.

Named as defendants in the suit are the Attorney-General of the Federation, the Federal Ministry of Finance, the Nigerian Customs Service and the Federal Inland Revenue Service.
The commission said that it came to court simply because it had made fruitless efforts to draw the attention of the ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo’s government into the anomaly but that nothing was done about it.

The commission’s claim before the court is being prosecuted by the Chambers of Chief Chris Uche (SAN).
RMFAC through its counsel, Chief Uche (SAN), invoked the jurisdiction of the high court vide an originating summons.

It is the contention of the commission that the constitutional issues raised in the suit were non-contentious and could be summarily determined without calling any oral evidence.
Formulated for the court to determine in the originating summons submitted to the court are eight fundamental cum constitutional questions including:

Whether having regard to section 7(6), sections 80(3), 162(3) and 165-167 and Item A (1) (a) - (iv) of Part 11 of the Second Schedule of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, the 1st and 2nd Defendants are entitled to deduct monies directly from the Federation Account running into billions of Dollars and billions of Naira for any of the following:

(a) National Integrated Power Plants for which over US $ 3.4bn already deducted
(b) Nigerian Railways Co-operation Project for which over US $250 million already deducted © Paris and London Club Debt Percentage Commission and Payments for which over US $13 Billion already deducted.

(d) N13.7bn monthly direct deduction from the Federation Account under “ALGON-Assisted” health scheme
(e) 7% monthly deduction from the Federation Account as cost of collection of revenue in favour of the Nigerian Customs Service, with the sum of over N40bn already deducted.

(f) 4% monthly deduction from the Federation Account as cost of collection of revenue in favour of Federal Inland Revenue Service, with the sum of over N20bn already deducted.

·Whether having regard to sections 80(3), 162(3) and 165-167 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, and having further regard to the decision of the Supreme Court in ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE FEDERATION vs. ATTORNEY GENERAL OF ABIA STATE & 35 OTHERS (2002) 6 NWLR (764) 542, the monthly direct deductions from the Federation Account for:

(a)National Integrated Power Plant

(b)Nigerian Railways Co-operation Project

(c) Paris and London Club Debt Percentage Commission

(d) N 13.7 Billion Naira monthly direct deduction from the Federation Account under “ALGON-Assisted” health scheme

(e) 7% monthly deduction from the Federation Account as cost of collection of revenue in favour of the Nigerian Customs Service

(f) 4% monthly deductions from the Federation Account as cost of collection of revenue in favour of Federal Inland Revenue Service running into billions of Dollars and billions of Naira by the defendants through direct first line charge on the Federation Account are not unconstitutional?
Another Round Of Looting in The Police Force....

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/jul/31/716.html

Okiro uncovers N500m fraud at police cooperatives

By Wisdom Patrick, Snr Correspondent, Lagos

A fraud of N500 million has been uncovered at the Nigerian Police Force Cooperatives Society Limited.

The fraud was allegedly carried out by senior police officers attached to the society.

The officials were said to have perfected the act of collecting credit facilities above what is due to them, and deftly avoid paying back either the principal or the interest.

According to a source at the cooperatives, the perpetrators' modus operandi is: "They use names of deceased or dismissed policemen's savings under the care scheme to funnel the loan into their personal purses."

Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mike Okiro, was said to have been intimated about the scam, through a petition by aggrieved members of the Force, whose monthly deductions, accounted for a large chunk of the funds of the cooperative society.

Okiro, a stickler for probity and transparency, was said to have vowed to unravel the people behind the fraud.

"The IGP is not happy with the development and has already promised to institute a probe, vowing that those found culpable would regret their actions. He has even ordered for the audit of the cooperative's account," the source said.

It was further gathered that an Abuja based chartered accounting firm has been pencilled down for the job of examining the books of the organisation and that the exercise would soon commence.

The source also said that the police cooperatives account has never been externally audited since it came into existence over 20 years ago.

"Anybody posted there sees the muddle-up accounting system as opportunity to siphoned money through unmerited credit facilities."

Aug 1, 2008, 07:24 PM
From Plateau...

LINK: http://www.guardiannewsngr.com/news/article03//indexn2_html?pdate=010808&ptitle=Jang%20probes%20Dariye,%20Botmang

Jang probes Dariye, Botmang

From Isa Abdulsalami, Jos

PLATEAU State government has inaugurated a seven-man judicial commission of inquiry to probe the past activities of the state government from May 29, 1999 to May 29, 2007. By this, the immediate past Governor Joshua Dariye and his Deputy Michael Botmang are to be included in the investigation.

Speaking yesterday at the inauguration of the commission at Government House, Rayfield Jos, Governor Jonah Jang, who performed the ceremony, lamented that his administration was initiating a process which it had resisted at its inception..

Jang stated that the government had initially opted for an administrative investigation panel which eventually produced various white papers for consideration by the State Executive Council. He stressed, however, that the council discovered that the state was confronted with colossal misappropriation of funds in many of the organisations.

According to the governor, "these discoveries were not such that could be waved aside. As a government that believes in justice and fairness that the EXCO had resolved to institute a judicial commission of inquiry to undertake the exercise on a bigger scale.

"The fact that government had announced the institution of an inquiry months ago but is just being inaugurated reflects our desire to ensure that it is conducted in the most responsible, fair and meticulous manner. Let me state that we had maintained that a full- scale probe would be carried out if we found the need for that. We indeed, found ourselves in that position following revelations by the 17 administrative panels, with more still under investigation."

He said the task before the commission was enormous. The terms of reference of the commission include, investigating the management and operations of ministries, departments, parastatals, institutions, and other agencies.

It is also to determine malpractices in award of contracts and execution of agreements by such government agencies, to recover payments made for jobs not executed or completed and impose appropriate sanctions on erring officials in the said agencies.

Jang stated that the state government was aware of the need for fair hearing, which he said the administrative panels might not have provided, urging those that might be invited or who have a presentation to make to avail themselves of the chance to give their own side of the case.

" A Judicial Commission is empowered to call for memoranda, written or oral witnesses as the case may be, while all government agencies are expected to give the commission full cooperation and support. Similarly, the commission, which has a period of six months for this assignment, is to sit in public," Jang stated.

He said the state government had deliberately taken time to assemble the commission's members headed by a distinguished jurist and current chairman of the Nigerian Council on Legal Education, Mr. Justice Morounkeji Omotayo Onalaja, a retired Justice of the Court of Appeal.

Jang urged the members to be impartial arbiters, dispassionate, selfless and objective so that their recommendations could earn the respect of all concerned.

Other members of the commission are Matthew Aworhe Ekore, Gideon Ngwen, Dr. J.S. Mamven, Peter K. Deshi, Esther Dogonyaro and Peter Deshi, who will serve as secretary..

Responding, Chairman of the commission, Justice Onalaja promised to live up to expectation, adding that members would discharge their duties without fear or favour.

He said the commission would commence public sitting today in view of the urgency, adding that it would sit from 9 a. m. to 1 p.m. every day when it would go on break to resume by 2 p.m. and close finally by 5 p.m.

He gave those affected by the probe 30 days from today to submit memoranda. He said everybody would be given a fair hearing.

Former governor, Joshua Dariye had instituted a commission of inquiry into the activities of his predecessors when he came to power in 1999. The commission was headed by Senator Venmak Dangin at the time, but its recommendations were not implemented

Aug 3, 2008, 06:17 AM
LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200808033392521

Governor's aide in N28m grain and fertiliser scam
By Jide Babalola

POLICE are investigating Mr. Thaddeus Ochoma, a Personal Assistant to Governor Ikedi Ohakim of Imo State, over alleged diversion of grains and fertiliser worth N28.3m.

The name of the governor and other top officials in Imo State were mentioned in the scam.

However, the Chief Security Officer in the state‘s Government House, Mr. Godwin Ejimofor Eze, told Sunday Punch that the governor did not know anything about the scandal.

Ochoma, who is popularly known as Teddy, is being investigated over claims by a group of 28 traders from Bodija market in Ibadan that they paid N28.3m following a promise he made that consignments of Imo State's grains allocation from the Federal Grains Reserve would be sold to them.

In a July 18, 2008 affidavit deposed to at the Federal High Court in Abuja, the leader of the traders, Mr. Abiodun Awobiyi, alleged that Teddy claimed that he was handling the sale of the commodities on behalf of Ohakim.

It was also alleged that Teddy said that the governor‘s Chief of Staff, state Commissioner for Agriculture and other officials of the state government were involved in the deal.

It was learnt at the Louis Edet House headquarters of the Nigerian Police that the Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Mike Okiro, had directed that the case should be transferred to Abuja for further investigations.

In a memo with reference number CB:7000/IGP.SEC/ABJ/Vol.255/504 dated July 29, 2008 and signed by the Principal Staff Officer to the IGP, Mr. Austin Obaedo, the police directed the Deputy Inspector-General of Police in charge of the Federal Criminal Investigation Department to transfer the case to Abuja.

Already, the traders‘ lawyer, Mr. Kayode Ajulo, has written a letter demanding that Ohakim should refund his clients‘ N28.3m.

Otherwise, his clients have threatened to drag him to court; and to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission.

A source at the Senate‘s Committee On Food Crisis made available to Sunday Punch, a copy of another letter received from Ajulo by the committee on July 28, 2008.

"It is pertinent to present to you the most unfortunate, callous and degrading role of some of our leaders whose mindlessness about the welfare of the people is crushing the effort of the committee on such a crucial issue as food crisis.

"The Chief Security Officer to the governor had invited one of the petitioners, Mr. Abiodun Awobiyi to Government House, Owerri, where he was arrested and detained by the police and kept incommunicado," Ajulo stated.

Ajulo also confirmed writing the letter to the governor, adding that he had forwarded petitions to the EFCC and the ICPC on behalf of his clients.

When contacted on the telephone on Friday evening, the CSO to Governor Ohakim, Mr. Godwin Eze, told our correspondent that the governor personally handed over Ochoma to the state's Commissioner of Police for investigations.

"What is a mere N28m to a governor; my governor is not involved and I can tell you that I arrested the personal aide on the governor‘s orders and the governor personally handed him to the Commissioner of Police for investigation.

The governor will not make a refund of the money.

"We cannot deny that the man was an aide to the governor; he used the Government House environment as a facility to convince his victim.

"You cannot attribute that to bad security at all because so many people visit Government House and you cannot expect one to personally know all those who visit.

"Mr. Abiodun Awobiyi, who brought the money on behalf of other traders, is not known to the governor and the governor does not know him.

"One cannot know how many states such persons have been to, with the intention of buying up fertilizers and grains," Eze stated

Aug 3, 2008, 06:43 PM
EFCC arrests YabaTech Rector, smashes killer fuel syndicate

The EFCC has arrested the Rector of Yaba College of Technology, Mr. Owoso Olubumi, over a case of conspiracy, misappropriation and diversion of public funds.

He is being questioned for his role in manipulating the institution's nominal roll with intent to defrauding the federal government, and misleading the office of the Accountant General of the Federation regarding the status of staff of the Polytechnic's primary and secondary schools.

In a related development, the effort of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to check the incidences of illegal oil bunkering and pipeline vandalism was rewarded last week as operatives of the Anti Terrorism and Pipeline Vandalisation Unit of the Commission smashed a syndicate that specializes in the adulteration of petroleum products. Members of the syndicates which operate from the Apapa area of Lagos were picked up on July 24, 2008 following a tip off.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/aug/3/510.html

Aug 4, 2008, 06:18 PM
Probe: ‘$22.6bn refinery, gas, electricity projects not executed'

Projects worth $22.6bn meant for the improvement of the downstream segment of the petroleum sector with 18 months completion date, beginning 2006, have not been executed, investigation has revealed.

The projects, numbering 10, were tied to oil blocks awarded by the Department Petroleum Resources to local and foreign companies that participated in the 2005 and 2006 bid rounds.

Many of the oil blocks were won through discretionary powers of the Minister of Petroleum as contained in the Petroleum Act, just as many of the enjoined the right of first refusal, a process that ousted competition and ensured payment of cheap signature bonuses.

It was gathered that the initial commitment to the projects by the bid winners attracted the Federal Government to the deals.

However, the House of Representatives 26-member ad-hoc panel, chaired by Mr. Igo Aguma, probing the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and its subsidiaries, discovered that none of the projects for which the oil blocks were sold had gotten off the ground

More Here: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200808040593629

Aug 5, 2008, 09:16 AM
Nigeria loses N6b daily to gas flaring

NOTHING so poignantly confirms the open frittering away of Nigeria's resources than gas non-utilisation and this fact was again underlined when a Senate Committee yesterday disclosed that the country was losing $15 million (N5.8 billion) daily to the flaring of the precious hydrocarbon product.

Also yesterday, the Environment, Housing and Urban Development Minister, Mrs. Halima Tayo Alao, disclosed that between October 2006 and this year, oil companies in Nigeria have recorded 1260 spills.

READ MORE HERE: http://www.guardiannewsngr.com/news/article01//indexn2_html?pdate=050808&ptitle=Nigeria%20loses%20N6b%20daily%20to%20gas%20 flaring
Corruption everywhere... :mad:

ICPC Arrests Prison Officers, Others Over N22m Employment Scam

A Chief Superintendent of Prisons, Josephine Uchenna, has been arrested by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) over alleged bribery scandal.

She was said to have collected over N22 million, in collaboration with others, from 140 applicants seeking employment into the Nigeria Prisons Service (NPS) and the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS).

Uchenna, attached to the Administration Department of the NPS was arrested along with a top government official attached to the office of the Minister of Interior and four others from the Immigration and Prisons services.

MORE HERE: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/head/article01
Obasanjos $50 million oil mess....

A suspended director of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has said that the former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, approved the transfer of the $50 million Oil Prospecting Licence (OPL) 291 of an oil block won by a Nigerian oil company, Starcrest, to a Chinese company in the 2006 mini bid round.
The director, Mr. Tony Chukwueke, said this while denying the complicity of the department in the fraudulent transfer. Chukwueke said this in a statement made available in Abuja while responding to the investigation of the department currently being carried out by the House of Representatives ad hoc committee.
According to the suspended director, in the statement issued on Sunday, the DPR had no powers to sell oil blocks, saying only the President could exercise such powers. Solicitor to Starcrest, Chief Emefo Etudo, last week, accused Mr. Chukwueke of colluding with 10 other persons to transfer the oil block to the Chinese firm using a hitherto unknown name, Starcrest Energy Limited.

MORE HERE: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/aug/4/606.html
Alao-Akala again....

Alao-Akala woos defectors with N5m each - ANPP

The All Nigeria Peoples Party has called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to probe the alleged N5m paid to each of the party's five lawmakers before they defected to the Peoples Democratic Party.

A statement by the Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr. Wale Olatunji, on Monday, said that the money was paid to the lawmakers from the coffers of the Oyo State Government to facilitate their defection.

Reacting to the allegation through his Special Adviser on Public Communication, Mr. Dotun Oyelade, the governor advised the ANPP to stop wallowing in self-pity as a result of the defection of its members to the PDP

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200808053171628

Aug 6, 2008, 06:25 AM
EFCC arraigns ex-Gov Boni Haruna, aide, for stealing N93.9m

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday arraigned former Governor of Adamawa State, Mr Boni Haruna before a Federal high court sitting in Abuja for unlawfully diverting a paltry sum of N93,935,000 from the state treasury during his eight year tenure as the state chief executive.

Boni Haruna was the state governor between 1999 and 2007. Also arraigned with him yesterday was his former Special Assistant, Mohammed Onuwa Basil.
Basil is presently a member of the Adamawa State House of Assembly. The charge against them was packaged into 21 separate counts.

Did you read the reporter describe roughly 94 million naira as "paltry"??? :mad: That explains how morally depraved we have gone...

LINK HERE: http://www.vanguardngr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=13655&Itemid=43
War Over Vital Documents...

EFCC Arrests Ex-staff, Ibrahim Magu

Economic and Financial Crimes Commission(EFCC) last night arrested a former official of the Commission, Chief Superintendent of Police Ibrahim Magu.
Magu was the EFCC official that handled the investigations that nailed some former governors in the country.
THISDAY learnt that the ex-EFCC official was arrested on the invitation of Force Criminal Investigation Department for allegedly being in possession of some 'vital documents' of the Commission.
He was being detained at Abuja Police Command Headquarters, Area 10, last night.
Magu's residences in Abuja and Lagos had been searched several times over the allegation of keeping, vital documents of EFCC.
It was learnt that the Commission's henchmen were battling to retrieve the documents that nailed the ex- governors in a bid to arrange a soft landing for the former chief executives.
Mangu was Director of Operations of EFCC when Ibrahim Lamorde was acting chairman of the commission.

LINK HERE: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=118819
Police recover N500 million from fraudsters

Police Zone II police command in Lagos has recovered over N406 million cash and N22 million goods stolen from two banks and another corporate organization.

The Assistant Inspector General of police in charge of the zone comprising Lagos and Ogun States, Muhammed Abubakar, who made the revelation on Tuesday at a press conference, said the money and goods had been handed over to the owners.
Giving insight on how the money and goods were recovered by his command, he said the sum of N280 million was recovered by the zonal anti-fraud operatives in a case of conspiracy, fraud and stealing involving two banks (names withheld).

Abubakar explained that "the sum of N280 million paid by Mobil Oil Nigeria Plc to Lagos, Akwa-Ibom and Rivers states boards of inland revenue was fraudulently transferred from one bank to an account in another bank. In the course of investigations, one Olarenwaju Gentry was arrested."
The police boss said the Olarenwaju confessed that one Kayode requested to have his company's documents to process a contract he got from an oil company in Nigeria, which he obliged, not knowing that Kayode was a fraudster

More Here: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2008/aug/06/national-06-08-2008-008.htm

Aug 7, 2008, 03:20 PM
EFCC invites Osun SSG, commissioners, others over govt purchases

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has invited the Secretary to the Osun State Government, commissioners for local government affairs, finance, works; and the Vice-Chancellor, Osun State University, Osogbo, over some financial procurement by the state government.

Also invited are the state Accountant-General, Mr. G Babatunde and the Clerk of the House of Assembly, Mr. Festus Omisakin. They were directed to report at the EFCC headquarters, Abuja, on Friday.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200808072262764

Aug 8, 2008, 06:27 AM
I D Card Scam....

ID Card: Ireland, UK Freeze N1.06bn Assets

The last may not have been heard of the National Identity Card scam as assets worth N1.06 billion belonging to a former director, Department of National Civic Registration, Christopher Orumgre Agidi, has been frozen by courts in Dublin and London.
Agidi, a retired civil servant, was accused by the Indep-endent and Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) of being part of a major bribery scam that rocked the Internal Affairs Ministry in 2003.
Yesterday, a court in Dublin found him guilty of taking N1.09 billion (€6 million) in bribes and corrupt payments which are domiciled in Ireland and United Kingdom with a number of life bond policies with a branch of HSBC Life (Europe) situated in Dublin.
The policies were frozen by a High Court. Mr. Justice John MacMenamin heard that Agidi had transferred just under €1.9 million to the Harcourt Centre finance house in October 2000 and that English police believed he still had a substantial six-figure sum invested there.
Rossa Fanning, counsel for Nigeria, told the court that the orders freezing €3,787,000 in accounts in Agidis name in London banks had already been granted by the High Court in England, pending the Dublin application.

MORE HERE: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=119021

Aug 10, 2008, 06:09 AM
ICPC uncovers N357m fraud in Kogi

OPERATIVES of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission have uncovered a N357m fraud in Kogi State.

The money, which was traced to three illegal bank accounts, was reportedly illegally deducted from local government allocations to the state.

A Preliminary Investigation Report of the operatives indicted the state governor, Alhaji Ibrahim Idris, and a few other top government officials.

Findings by SUNDAY PUNCH showed that the report of the operatives was ready to be forwarded to ICPC chairman, Justice Emmanuel Ayoola.

The report indicated that nine specific allegations of corruption were made against the governor and the other top officials......The nine specific allegations investigated by the ICPC officials included the inflation of a N208 million contract for a 1km road; construction of Meme Bridge from N208m to N1.2bn; and inflation of the Lokoja International Market from N3bn to N5bn.

Other allegations were the 2006 budgetary expenditures on drilling rigs, which were never supplied; the mismanagement of Universal Basic Education funds; outright misappropriation of N12bn from the state’s 2007 budget; sundry inflation of contracts; and payments for unexecuted contracts, and illegal deductions from local government councils’ statutory allocations.

The ICPC interim report indicated that the full investigations into the case had reached a critical stage.

It showed that between 2003 and May 2008, one per cent of statutory allocations to the 21 LGs in the state was being illegally deducted

More Here: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art2008081005280

Aug 11, 2008, 08:19 AM
Bragging? abi dod eat dog...

Graft: EFCC Targets Tinubu, Bafarawa, Muazu

In its continued prosecution of high profile cases previously suspended by its former leadership, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has concluded plans to pick up three former state governors and re-open the cases of alleged financial malfeasance they allegedly committed during their tenure in office.
The affected former chief executives, who may be arrested within the next fortnight, include Asiwaju Bola Tinubu (Lagos), Alhaji Adamu Muazu (Bauchi) and Alhaji Attahiru Bafarawa (Sokoto) The arrest and prosecution of the trio, THISDAY learnt last night, would commence sooner than later by the agency as all grey areas connected with the cases?have been cleared.

More Here: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/aug/10/203.html

Digital Villager
Aug 12, 2008, 01:09 AM
I am positive that one day we will overcome. Nigeria will survive.

me too. and not just in nigeria alone...

Aug 12, 2008, 04:37 AM
Reps discover N400bn in hidden accounts

HOUSE of Representatives on Monday said that over N400 billion unspent funds from the 2008 budget was discovered to have been deposited in hidden accounts by some Federal Government parastatal agencies.

The funds, the House said, were from revenues generated by the parastatal agencies.

The House Committee on Finance is currently probing numerous agencies of government over non-remittance of revenues into the Federation Account, saying it was on the trail of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Authority (PPPRA) over the controversial issue of N70 subsidy on diesel whereas the product was never deregulated, otherwise it shouldn't have sold for around N140 at filling stations.

The committee, which accused the authorities of the PPPRA of deliberately not honouring the invitation of the probe panel, said it was also trailing the agency over the refusal to comply with former President Olusegun Obasanjo's directive that a tax of N1.50 should not be charged on every litre of imported petrol.

Deputy Chairman, Committee on Finance, Honourable John Daika, disclosed to newsmen that the ongoing investigation of revenue generating agencies and parastatal agencies of government revealed that affected bodies never remitted all the funds expected of them to the Federation Account and yet, they came to ask for money in the budget every year.

According to Daika, the nation was losing over a trillion naira on account of the said subsidies and the non-compliance by the PPPRA with the presidential directive on the non-charging of N1.50 tax on every litre of petrol.

MORE HERE: http://www.tribune.com.ng/12082008/news/news2.html

Aug 15, 2008, 06:47 AM
Alleged NPA scam: EFCC may arrest more

There are indications that more persons may have been penciled in for arrest as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) continues investigation and prosecution of those arrested in connection with the N82 billion scam at the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA).

Sources told the Nigerian Tribune that the manhunt this time might tilt in the direction of contractors who assisted in the perpetration of the alleged scam.

The EFCC, having done with the Randle Audit Report of 2004 quoted recently by a national daily, coupled with its own independent investigations, felt the need to move for the Nigerian contractors to facilitate smooth prosecution of the ongoing case.

A breakdown of the EFCC record put the money in question at N46,942, N402,776.13; $236, 913, 986.84; £24, 905,588, DM1461, 936.65, Euro 147,926,597, SEK 4.1million.

The record prepared by the Mallam Nuhu Ribadu committee also posited that Chief Olabode George, between 2001-2003, was responsible for contracts valued at N9,386,265,067; $213,655,866; £9,698,508; Euro 47, 204,395.00; and DM9,056,220.00.

The Managing Directors of NPA, Mallam Bello Gwandu, who served between January 2001 and October 2001 awarded contracts valued at N 3,095,953,055.52, $2,414,345.85, Euro701,702.45, DM382, 226.65, SEK3,706,405.30; Mr. Joseph Akagwu, acting Managing Director between November 2001 and April 2002- N1,611,188,705.64, $1,970,865.29, E349,532.17, EURO 110,556.60, DM545,607.96, SEK381,513.40.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/15082008/news/news8.html

Aug 15, 2008, 07:14 PM
Alleged NPA scam: EFCC may arrest more

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/15082008/news/news8.html

What will they make of these endless probes? I bet soon all these will be forgotten and it will be business as usual.

Aug 15, 2008, 07:50 PM
Na wa 4 my ppl O! Gosh, 9ger get money O!! Na so so billions (naira) our leaders dey steal now. I can't help but wonder if, for a moment we have a "good " leader in that country. imagine, what we could have achieve now. instead, our so-called leaders steal the money and deposit it in foreign banks.

I doubt if britain can survive with these much pilferage from her govt. officials.

I weep for my country!!!

Aug 15, 2008, 08:22 PM
Corruption: ICPC names 23 ex-govs for probe

Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC), yesterday unveiled a list of 23 former governors that would be interrogated over alleged financial malpractices while in office.

The affected governors include some of those already being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) at different courts across the nation.

According to the list obtained by Daily Champion, the 23 governors allegedly involved are: Alh. Sani Yarima (Zamfara), Alh. Abdullahi Adamu (Nasarawa), Dr. Peter Odili (Rivers), Alh. Ahmed Makarfi (Kaduna), Alh. Attahiru Bafarawa (Sokoto), Alh. Ahmadu Adamu Muazu (Bauchi), Chief Lucky Igbinedion (Edo), Bola Ahmed Tinubu (Lagos).

Others are: Alh. Saminu Turaki (Jigawa), Chief Orji Kalu (Abia), Victor Attah (Akwa-Ibom), Donald Duke (Cross-River), Chief Achike Udenwa (Imo), Chief Joshua Dariye (Plateau), Mohammed Adamu Aliero (Kebbi), Alh. A. A. Kure (Niger), George I. Akume (Benue), Ali Modu Sherrif (Borno), Ibrahim Idris (Kogi), Ayo Fayose (Ekiti), James Ibori (Delta), and Rashidi Ladoja (Oyo).

Though the ICPC had disclosed that not all the governors may face trial, the commission said that they may have to come forward for interrogation the moment the report submitted by the committee set up to look into their case completes its job

LINK: http://www.champion-newspapers.com/news/article2_150808.htm

Aug 16, 2008, 09:06 PM
PEF Scandal: EFCC Recovers Jeeps From Traditional Rulers - Perm Sec, Security Chiefs Also

THE Economic and Fi-nancial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has reportedly recovered some of the car gifts given to some prominent Nigerians by the embattled coordinator of the Police Equipment Fund (PEF), Chief Kenny Martins.

The commission's boss, Mrs. Farida Waziri, had threatened to prosecute the beneficiaries if they did not let go of the controversial gifts.

Already, nine Prado Jeeps had been recovered by the operatives probing the alleged N774 billion scam rocking the Fund, which has led to the trial of Martins and his lieutenants.

A source revealed to Saturday Tribune that the nine Jeeps were recovered from a serving Permanent Secretary, prominent traditional rulers and retired Security Chiefs (all names withheld).

The Sultan of Sokoto was the first to return his when resigning as the chairman of the Fund's Board, following a disagreement with its leadership.

The Permanent Secretary was said to have yielded his own which was still unused, immediately Farida ordered that the cars should be returned.

MORE HERE: http://www.tribune.com.ng/16082008/news/news1.html
ICPC Arrests Prisons' Chief - For Defrauding 150 Job Applicants

A Chief Superintendent of Prisons, Mrs. Mba Josephine Uchenna (CSP) is now a guest of the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) for allegedly duping applicants of several millions of naira on the guise of helping them to secure employment within the Nigerian Prisons Service and the Nigerian Immigration Service.

The suspect is also being investigated along with officials of the Prisons and Immigration Services with whom she was alleged to have perpetrated the fraud, while the ICPC was said to be looking for other officials of the two agencies equally said to be involved.

The arrest of Josephine, according to ICPC officials who spoke with Saturday Tribune, was prompted by a petition filed before the Commission by one of the applicants, Mrs. Okolinwa Okpala, who alleged that the suspect collected N500,000 from her to help her secure appointment with the Nigerian Prisons Service.
The petitioner alleged that the suspect initially gave her a bank account in which to pay the sum, adding she subsequently collected the sum of N400,000 cash from her, ordering her to pay the remaining N100,000 into the designated bank account.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/16082008/news/news2.html
Customs too...

ICPC Arrests Four Customs Officers

Four Customs officers with Zone B, Federal Operations, Kaduna, have been arrested by the operatives of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission, ICPC, in a sting operation.

The arrested officers have been moved to the Commission's headquarters in Abuja where they are being interrogated. A statement signed by Mike Sowe, Head, Public Enlightenment Department of the ICPC, said the sting operation was carried out following a petition by a group of Kano-based traders whose goods were being transported to Kafanchan in Kaduna State.

He said the Customs officers, however, intercepted and detained the vehicle conveying the goods alleging that they were contraband materials.

According to him, the officers allegedly demanded for one million naira from the traders before the goods could be released, even after the traders had insisted the goods were purchased from the open market in Kano.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/16082008/news/news12.html

Aug 17, 2008, 10:27 AM
Obasanjo's minister awarded 7km road for N3.4b , 50km Benin-Shagamu road awarded at N7.5b - ICPC begins probe of Berger, RCC, others

The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission {ICPC} has reportedly begun a probe of contracts awarded on road projects by the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo between 1999 and 2007.

Already, a preliminary report on the probe was said to have revealed alleged mind-boggling scam running into billions of naira, perpetrated by some government top officials in the ministry in collaboration with some of the contractors that handled the projects.

Highlights of the interim report, according to a source, revealed that a former Works Minister {names withheld} awarded a contract for the construction of a 7km road for over N3.4 billion. One hundred and thirty (130) km of the same road had earlier been awarded for the sum of N1.5 billion.

Investigation also reportedly revealed that 50km of the popular Benin-Sagamu road, along Benin-Ofosu Expressway was said to have been awarded by another former Works Minister {names withheld} for over N7.5 billion.

The initial agreement on the project was said to have been 78km at the same amount. Already, a Special Investigation Team reportedly constituted by the ICPC's chairman, Justice Emmanuel Ayoola rtd., was said to have quizzed a number of officials of the Ministry of Transport, while contract documents categorised into Completed, On-going and Terminated projects had been reportedly recovered from the officials.

The investigation team, according to Sunday Tribune source, narrowed their search-light to three main contracts which include the Gombe-Biu road with contract serial no 5012 awarded to Triacta Nigeria Ltd., the dualisation of East-West Road section 11, Kalama-Port Harcourt-Onne with contract no.5868 awarded to Julius Berger Nigeria Plc and Rehabilitation and asphalt overlay of the Benin-Sagamu Road with contract No. 5900 awarded to Reynolds Construction Company {RCC}.

Sunday Tribune source further noted that, "On the Gombe-Biu road, investigation revealed that the project scope was rehabilitation and asphalt overlay of the 130 km road. The project started on 15th November, 1999 with the expected date of completion to be 31st December, 2005. The contract was awarded to a company named Sinacom International Ltd. in the sum of N1,584,721,215.

The source added that, "However, for whatever breach which investigation would soon unravel, the contract was terminated with 20% completion and sum of N653,215,055.12 paid as against N316,944,243 which represented the actual work done.

"Surprisingly, the contract was later re-awarded to another company named Triacta Nigeria Ltd., for the sum of N3,452,224.04 to construct only 7km of the same road. A situation where 130km length was initially awarded for only N1.6 billion and later only 7km length part of the same road re-awarded at a cost of over N3.4 billion was an outrageous corruption".

MORE HERE: http://www.tribune.com.ng/17082008/news/news2.html
N800m contract scandal hits House of Reps

The investigations were said to have been engineered by the manner in which the House Leadership was said to have covered up the allegations that a top member of the House was involved in some unathorised spending of N400 million on sundry items in June.

But members who were said to be dissatisfied with the explanation of the senior House officer'srole in the N400 million saga had launched another investigation into his role in the purchase of 380 units of 407 cars, which they now claim led to the House losing another N800 million to private pockets through the cars purchase.

The claim is that while the House approved the purchase of the highest grade of 407 cars (premium) which unit price is put at N6.1 million, the members were supplied Peugeot 407(comfort) cars which price is put at N5.1 million each.

Besides, the members are claiming that the House was entitled to a minimum of 10 percent discount on each of the cars, which is the standard practice among dealers and which should have brought the unit price of the cars to N4.6 million.

MORE HERE: http://www.tribune.com.ng/17082008/news/news1.html
21 ex-governors linked with N120bn assets –ICPC

The 21 ex-governors being investigated by Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission have been linked.

A very reliable source at the ICPC told our correspondent on Friday in Abuja that the commission had set up a three-man committee to scrutinise petitions linking the ex-governors with funds, property and other assets worth over N120bn. Our correspondent also gathered that the commission had concluded arrangements to engage an undisclosed number of experienced lawyers as prosecutors.

The source said, "Funds in bank accounts, property and other assets being mentioned in the petitions are worth more than N120bn, but there are many areas that require being verified."

The commission had said on Thursday that it was investigating 21 ex-governors and two serving state chief executives for corruption. Some of the former governors are currently being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission for various acts of corruption.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200808172334837

Aug 18, 2008, 10:58 AM
EFCC recovers NJI's N1.7b from secret account

INDICATIONS emerged yesterday that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has recovered a total N1.7 billion unspent fund of the National Judicial Institute kept in an undisclosed bank account.

The anti-corruption agency may soon arraign the chairman of the NJI and three others allegedly involved in keeping the unspent fund.

According to sources, the initial investigation was triggered by a petition over the sum of N400 million allegedly mis-used by the institute.

But a top-shot of the NJI, now on suspension in connivance with three others, the late Chief Admin Officer, Chief Accountant and a Principal Engineer, had allegedly kept the unspent N1.7 billion in a commercial bank in violation of the President's directive that all unspent funds before December 28 be returned to the national treasury.

The officials had, in January this year, allegedly awarded 21 contracts back-dating such to December 10, 2007 as a way of circumventing the return of the fund.

However, the EFCC swung into action when it received the petition against the four and discovered that the N400 million contained in the petition was only a fraction of the total N1.7 billion.

MORE HERE: http://www.guardiannewsngr.com/news/article01//indexn2_html?pdate=180808&ptitle=EFCC%20recovers%20NJI's%20N1.7b%20from%20se cret%20account

Aug 19, 2008, 08:56 AM
N12bn: EFCC, ICPC Quiz Top Ondo Officials

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has quizzed the Ondo State Commissioner for Finance, Chief Tayo Alasoadura and two permanent secretaries over alleged diversion of N12.5 billion from the government account to secret accounts.
The Permanent Secretaries being investigated by the EFCC over the alleged diversion of public fund are Abiodun Akinde(Finance) and Dr Deji Akinwalere (Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs).
Speaking in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the Spokesman of the EFCC, Mr Femi Babafemi,confirmed that the trio were being quizzed over alleged diversion of public fund to private accounts.
According to him, the three state officials were quizzed by the EFCC following series of petitions received from well meaning indigenes of Ondo State.

MORE HERE: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=120089

Aug 19, 2008, 09:06 AM
felix, nwanna, NVS would better start charging you for all dis bad reports wey you dey post for here...lol!

Aug 19, 2008, 09:29 AM
felix, nwanna, NVS would better start charging you for all dis bad reports wey you dey post for here...lol!

Take a look at this:

NDDC chairman docked for N800m theft

After his arrest and detention at the Force Headquarters in Abuja, suspended Chairman of the Niger-Delta Development Commission [NDDC], Ambassador Sam Edem, was on Monday arraigned before an Abuja High court for stealing N800 million belonging to the Federal Government. Following his arrest by the police, President Umaru Musa Yar’ Adua ordered his suspension. The Secretary to the Government of the Federation [SGF], Ambassador Baba Gana Kinggibe, had in a statement ordered his suspension following the allegations leveled against him.

According to the SGF, Edem “incurred expenditure on a large-scale, which cannot be accounted for by his own personal legitimate source of income.” Following his suspension, President Yar’ Adua further approved that the Akwa Ibom representative on the NDDC, Mr. Baasey Dan-Abia, act as the Chairman of the Commission.

The suspended NDDC boss was also arrested for alleged conspiracy to murder the NDDC Managing Director, Mr. Timi Alaibe, and attempt to ‘spiritually influence’ Vice President Goodluck Jonathan and the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Godswill Akpabio, to take some decision in his favour. He was also alleged to have paid the sum of N510 million out of the N800 million to a sorcerer, Dr. Perekambowe Ogah (alias Matthew Sonoma and Kakas Amgbari), who are both at large

Take a look at the picture of this demon called Edem here:

LINK: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/features/newsonthehour/2008/aug/19/newsbreak-19-08-2008-001.htm

Aug 19, 2008, 09:56 AM
Demon Reincarnation aka Edem..lol

Aug 19, 2008, 10:13 AM
The magnitude of all these embezzlement is just too mind boggling oh. It is all in the billions. Surely things can't just continue like this:icon_ques. When are we going to get to that breaking point:icon_ques Jesus wept:exclaim:

Aug 20, 2008, 08:23 AM
At The National Assembly, Robbers Will Investigate Robbers.....

72bn fund! N/Assembly probes Govs, Senators

National Assembly is set to conduct full scale investigation into the alleged wide spread abuse of funds for constituency projects across the country, as the nation's apex lawmaking body raised a team to monitor and verify the claims by both the lawmakers and the three tiers of government on the implementation of such projects.

The lawmakers have already approved N72billion for constituency projects this year with some of the senators, insisting on having direct control of the fund and deciding the location for the projects.

Deputy senate president, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, has however declared that senators would have not direct control of the fund but can only suggest the projects for his area after consultation with the people.

The fact finding tour of all government projects may have been informed by the claims and counter claims by stakeholders on the constituency projects as provided for in the previous budgets.

Reliable sources alleged that some of the said projects only exist on paper even as some state government are alleged to be laying claims to the projects.

The tour is to put things in proper perspective and take stock of such projects across the country.

But Senate yesterday declared that it would ensure that those indicted by any of its probe panel are prosecuted by the relevant security agencies ,

The probe team tagged, "inclusive budget monitoring and evaluation' is made up of members of the appropriation committee of both the Senate and House of Representatives , the United Nations Development Program(UNDP)and members of the Civil society.

Briefing journalists yesterday on the new initiatives, chairman senate committee on approoriation Senator Iyiola Omisore said that the monitoring team would be visiting the six geopolitical zones to specifically verify the claims by both the states, local and federal governments on the performance of projects for which public funds were voted for their implementation.

MORE HERE: http://www.champion-newspapers.com/news/article1_200808.htm

Aug 20, 2008, 08:52 AM
At The National Assembly, Robbers Will Investigate Robbers.....

..bros, dat crack me up big time...me don say before when naija start fight corruption we go know...now dem just dey pull our legs...'the gullibles'...lol!

Aug 21, 2008, 11:05 PM
Bayelsa Assembly summons Rep over N150m contract

YENAGOA - BAYELSA State House of Assembly has summoned the member representing Sagbama Federal constituency and former Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice under former Governor Goodluck administration, Mr. Dickson Seriake to appear before it to explain his role in non- execution of a N150m contract awarded for the procurement of law books by the immediate past administration.
The House which asked Hon. Seriake Dickson to appear before it on the 2nd of September to explain his role in the alleged contract also agreed to probe the multimillion naira electricity contract awarded to a Russian firm, Robo Michael by the immediate past administration for the supply and installation of a 32 KVA Gas Turbine for the state.

Chairman of the House Committee on Appropriation and member representing Yenagoa Constituency I, Hon. Alfred Egba while speaking under matter of urgent public importance informed members of the House of the shortage of books in the state libraries and its effect on the poor standard of education in the state.

Egba lamented that the various contracts awarded for the building of special schools and supply of books with special reference to the N150million book supply contract awarded by the administration of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan for the supply of law books to the state library.

He noted with concern that the Ministry of Justice under the administration of the Vice President and headed then by the member now representing Sagbama Federal constituency, Hon. Seriake Dickson awarded the contract but 18 months after no book has been supplied

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=14846&Itemid=44

Aug 22, 2008, 04:52 AM
One of the reasons for endless corruption in Naija can be gleaned from here: http://www.nigeriavillagesquare.com/board/main-square/75767-salary-increase-legislators-extended-civil-servants.html

Thus, politics has to be do-or-die, winner takes all as there is not much to be earned outside politics.
Ironical, isn't it:icon_ques

Aug 22, 2008, 11:34 AM
A corrupt legacy...

FG to review Obasanjo's $8.3bn railway contract

THE Federal Government on Thursday disclosed plans to review the $8.3 billion railway development project awarded to a Chinese firm under the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

The former administration announced a 25-year rail development project which was to take off with the Lagos to Kano route at an estimated cost of $8.3 billion with the initial release of $250 million to China Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC), the main contractor of the project.

Minister of Transportation, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, who made the government's plans at the interactive session with transport stakeholders in Abuja, said the contract would be redefined and that the option was already at the drawing table.

The contract became controversial as a result of the revelations that it was overbloated. She disclosed that the present administration was determined to develop the railway system as an alternative to road transportation, which she said had been overstretched in the country.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/22082008/news/news5.html
EFCC Quizzes Wabara Over $56m

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has quizzed the former Chairman of Hallmark Bank, Mark Nwabara, over $56 million allegedly diverted to his personal account.

It was learnt that the money was meant to be Nigeria's contribution for the Sao Tome and Principe joint venture.

EFCC Head of Media and Publicity, Femi Babafemi, confirmed that Nwabara "is in our custody providing useful information on what happened to the $56 million."

It also emerged on Wednesday that Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) Director General, Ndidi Okereke-Onyiuke, was invited by the EFCC over the fund raising activities of Africa For Obama (AFO), a group she heads as Chairman

READ MORE HERE: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/aug/21/703.html

Aug 23, 2008, 08:15 PM
Reps uncover $2.3bn NNPC fraud

The House of Representatives has uncovered a fresh $2.3billion fraud involving the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and a Chinese Firm, CNOOC.

A member of the House ad hoc Committee currently investigating the operations of the NNPC may have condoned the leasing without any interests accruing to the Federal Government of an Oil Mining License (OML) to the foreign firm.

In a chat with a few journalists, the lawmaker who pleaded anonymity, "because he was not authorised to talk", said the Committee was examining a report that an allottee Company in Nigeria who got Oil Mining License (OML) sold the lease to CNOOC a Chinese firm without paying a statutory percentage to the Federal Government through the NNPC.

The lawmaker, who is a co-chairman of the Committee, said the deal was sealed "in 2006, breached the Back-In-Rights Regulations".

The Igoh Aguma led-committee, has been reviewing the operations of the NNPC and its subsidiaries from 1999 to 2007.

"In fact, what the contractor gave out was 90 per cent of his contractual obligations and still retained 10 per cent.

"Under the back-in- rights regulations, if you are on a sole risk base and you hit oil, FG can give you 50 per cent and still retain 50 per cent.

"But, in this case the agreement was sold by the contractor to the Chinese firm without NNPC making a kobo." he said

The source, who spoke to Saturday Vanguard in his office, said the Committee had since requested the NNPC to give details of the transaction to enable it decide whether or not to reverse the deal.
China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC), the third largest oil Company in China is 70% owned by the Chinese Government. It specialises in the exploitation exploration and crude oil and gas.

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=15087&Itemid=43

Aug 26, 2008, 06:44 AM
After Chopping off peoples hands for stealing cows... ..:mad:

Assembly Orders Yarima, Others to Refund N1bn

Verification committee set up by Zamfara State House of Assembly to probe contracts awarded by previous administration has indicted former governor Ahmed Sani Yarima and some contractors.
They were alleged to have expended over N1billion belonging to the state government. The committee, therefore, recommended a refund of the money to the state coffers and prosecution of all civil servants and public officers involved in the scam.
They are to be charged for fraudulent breach of trust, abuse of office, mismanagement of public funds, and wanton disregard for the common good of people of Zamfara State

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=120711
Speaker queries unspent N1.5trn power fund

SPEAKER of the House of Representatives, Mr. Dimeji Bankole, said yesterday that about N1.5 trillion released by the Federal Government for the improvement of the power sector over the years was not spent, and yet remained unremitted to government coffers.
Mr. Bankole who spoke at the opening of the Annual Delegates' Conference of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) in Abuja also tasked legislators in the Niger Delta states to challenge their governors on their expenditure of the 13 per cent derivation fund, while President Umaru Yar'Adua in a message to the conference said the adoption of the federal system of government by the nation's founding fathers could not be faulted.

The immediate past Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Alfa Belgore, on his part said it was morally wrong for a political office seeker who is contesting an election to appoint the head of the electoral commission.

Mr. Bankole in his speech said: "Over N1.5 trillion was not remitted to the Federal Government account in the last 10 years. These are monies released to revamp the power sector and were not used, yet the money was not returned to Federal Government's account."

He vowed that nothing would stop him from presenting to the public the report of the Godwin Elumelu-led probe panel that investigated the power sector in the Obasanjo years.

On the Niger Delta crisis, he said: "There is a problem in the Niger Delta. The region is exploding.

A state in the South-South collects more than all the states in the North-East and the lawmakers in those states are not asking questions on how the money the governments collect from the federation account is used. No state Assembly from this region has asked the governors question.

"The National Assembly has started asking questions and this is called the oversight function. How much did the government spend, especially, as over $16 billion was spent on power, yet no power.

Nothing will stop me from presenting to the public, the Elumelu power probe report. We shall have power and we shall make laws that will change how money is spent by government functionaries.

"Over N1.5 trillion was not remitted to the Federal Government account in the last 10 years. These are monies released to revamp the power sector and were not used, yet the money was not returned to federal government account."

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=15320&Itemid=0

Aug 27, 2008, 05:27 AM
The Mother Of All Corruption

Councils wasted N3tr, says EFCC :eek:

IT was thumbs down for the third tier of government yesterday as the Chairman of the Ecomonic and Crimes Commission (EFCC) Mrs. Farida Waziri disclosed that despite the N3 trillion received by the 774 councils in the country between 1999 to 2007, there was nothing to show for the huge funds.
And to prevent further plundering of resources, the EFCC said it had put in place fresh plans to monitor the use of allocated funds to all councils.

Waziri, who presented the whopping figures yesterday at the opening of a three-day workshop organized by the commission in collaboration with the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON) in Abuja, said that the excuse of lack of funds by the councils for not being able to deliver services at the grassroots will no longer hold water as figures allocated to councils had confirmed availability of funds for service delivery.

According to her, "the office of the Accountant General of the Federation has revealed that between June1999 to June 2007, a whooping three trillion, three hundred and thirteen billion, five hundred and thirty four million, eight hundred and fifty six thousand, five hundred and forty one naira and seventy nine kobo (N3,313,534,856,541.79) was allocated to local government councils.

She added: "That is a large amount of money to develop Nigeria. The old argument that services cannot be delivered to the grassroots because of shortage of funds does not hold water anymore... I am sure everyone in this audience will agree with me that corruption is a major part of the decimal of governance failure at the local government councils".

MORE HERE: http://www.guardiannewsngr.com/news/article02//indexn2_html?pdate=270808&ptitle=Councils%20wasted%20N3tr,%20says%20EFCC

Aug 31, 2008, 08:32 AM
ICPC summons 18 Ondo council chairmen over N12.5bn scam

AT least 18 local government chairmen in Ondo State are to be grilled on Wednesday by operatives of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission.

The commission has already sent letters of invitation to the chairmen for questioning over alleged diversion of N12.5bn from the state‘s federal statutory allocations.

Specifically, ICPC investigators want them to explain all they know about the bank interests that accrued on the N12.5bn.

A source at ICPC told our correspondent that several career officers and three commissioners in the state administration had been quizzed by ICPC investigators in Abuja last Tuesday.

"The council chairmen have been told to bring various documents along with them. The major focus of investigations is unravelling what became of the bank interests that accrued on the N12.5bn; how it was disbursed and who the beneficiaries are," the source stated.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art2008083142250
Police report fingers FCT officials in N350m land scandal

POLICE have fingered a top official of the Federal Capital Territory, Mr. Emeka Elobi, in a controversial land scandal valued at about N350 million.

A Police Interim Investigation Report said he needed to clear himself over allegations of criminal conspiracy and forgery of land documents levelled against a firm, Next International Ltd.

After the preliminary investigation into issues raised in a petition by businessman, Dr. Obatoyinbo Jimoh, the investigators alleged that Elobi had to explain why he signed a "false and misleading" site plan.

The report was signed by the Assistant Commissioner of Police [Special Fraud Unit], ‘D‘ Department [FCID], Abuja, ACP Amechi Elumelu

MORE HERE: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200808313544443

Sep 1, 2008, 10:38 AM
NDDC N800m voodoo: Sorcerer arrested - N300m found in his account

A new dimension has been introduced into the N800 million for which the suspended Chairman of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Mr. Sam Edem, was arrested and charged.

Sources at the Force Headquarters, Abuja, told the Nigerian Tribune on Sunday that the alleged sorcerer had been arrested by the police. In fact, it was gathered that over N300 million was found in his bank account during investigations after his arrest.

The 32-year-old suspected sorcerer, it was gathered, was said to have been arrested last Tuesday. There are, however, indications that a senior officer in the police force may be making moves to frustrate further investigation into the matter.

There have been insinuations that the senior police officer reportedly ordered the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in the station where the suspect is being detained not to put him in a cell with other criminals but to allow him to stay behind the counter.

The sorcerer, who is from Bayelsa State, is now enjoying something of a royal treatment because of the protection being offered by the senior officer at the Force Headquarters

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/01092008/news/news8.html

Sep 4, 2008, 06:34 PM
Alleged N3bn fraud: EFCC invites 26 Osun lawmakers

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has invited 26 members of the Osun State House of Assembly, for questioning over allegation of receiving gratification from the state government, in the guise of executing constituency projects.

The state governor had recently credited the private accounts of the 26 lawmakers with 130 million each, a total of over N3 billion, sparking allegations by 11 Action Congress members of the House of attempt to squander government money.

It was learnt that the 26 legislators, on Wednesday were invited to the Commission’s Lagos office, on the directive of the Chairman, Mrs Farida Waziri, on the strength of petition and counter petition from both the Action Congress (AC) and the state government over the purpose and utilization of the said sum.

Though the EFCC Head of Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Babafemi confirmed the development, without giving details, Vanguard however gathered from sources within the Commission that the legislators invitation borders on allegation of criminal conspiracy, abuse of office and gross mismanagement of monies belonging to Osun State Government.

“The Chairman directed that, invitation be extended to the legislators, after reviewing a petition from 11 legislators, alleging an unsolicited crediting of N130 million each into their individual accounts by the governor and a counter petition from the State government alleging misuse of constituency funds against some legislators” a source confided.

The source confirmed that, the fund in question is, “ little over N3 billion of tax payers money, which purpose and utilization, the Commission is determined to ascertain and establish whether relevant sections of the act establishing the Commission has been breached

MORE HERE: http://www.vanguardngr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=16078&Itemid=47
Senators share N.272bn for one-day sitting

Facts emerged yesterday on how Nigeria’s 109 senators shared N272.5million as a gift for attending a day’s sitting.

The senators got N2.5 million each, as a reward for cutting short their holiday to attend the one day sitting last month during which the 2008 budget amendment bill was passed by the senate.

The alleged N2.5 million largesse for each senator is N100,000 higher than the proposed N2.4million annual salary by the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).

The commission had recently increased the annual salary of a senator from N979,000 to N2.4million, a proposal that has continued to generate ripples.

A highly placed source in the senate revealed that the said largesse was distributed to senators by the office of the senate services committee, shortly after the emergency sitting.

According to him, the office which was located on the same floor with the office of the senate president, witnessed the number of visitors on that said day as the personal aides to the senators besieged the committee chairman’s office to take delivery of the money.

A number of senators however took delivery of the money which came in N500 notes.

It was not confirmed whether the said money was part of the senator’s allowances as provided in the 2008 budget,

Daily Champion however learnt that the payment was to encourage the lawmakers to attend such sitting when summoned.

MORE HERE: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/sep/3/801.html

Sep 9, 2008, 08:36 PM
U.S. names Nigerian officials in N21b LNG scam

SOME top Nigerian officials in the regimes of the late head of state, Gen. Sani Abacha, his successor, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar and Olusegun Obasanjo administration have been linked with large scale fraud by the United States (U.S.) government.

Information filed by the American government under seal at a U.S. District Court in Houston, Texas shows that these Nigerian functionaries and their foreign collaborators siphoned N21 billion ($180 million) from the treasury through the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) trains and projects valued at N696 billion ($6 billion). According to records before the court, the bribery scandal ran for a decade, 1994 to 2004.

Although the names of former and current Nigerian functionaries, who shared in the bribe have not been released by the U.S. government, the stage for the prosecution of their cohorts has been set by an American oil company official, Mr. Jack Stanley, who last week pleaded guilty to the crime.

U.S. sources said that the bribery scandal involving topmost levels of the Nigerian government officials started in 1994 and continued till 2004 on the contract awards for Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) services in the building of the LNG trains.

Top Presidency, Petroleum Resources Ministry and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) officials on the one hand and the joint venture oil partners of the Federal Government on the other, reportedly oiled the fraud machinery.

As the scheme continued into the tenure of the civilian government of Obasanjo, two sums of N464 million ($4 million) and N5.9 billion ($51 million) were paid to bribe the Nigerian officials to facilitate the contracts, especially Trains 4 and 5 of the Bonny Island Project of the LNG.

On or about November 11, 2001, according to the U.S. government, Stanley confessed that he and a salesperson from an EPC contractor met in Abuja, "with a third top-level Executive branch official of the government of Nigeria and an NNPC official to request that the top-level Executive branch official designate a representative with whom the Joint Venture should negotiate the bribes to Nigerian government officials in exchange for the third top-level Executive branch official's support of the award of Trains 4 and 5 EPC contracts."

In the case of the Obasanjo administration, the chances are that Stanley was dealing directly with the Presidency since there was no oil minister then.

GRIM DETAILS HERE: http://www.guardiannewsngr.com/news/article02//indexn2_html?pdate=090908&ptitle=U.S.%20names%20Nigerian%20officials%20in%20 N21b%20LNG%20scam

Sep 14, 2008, 11:06 PM
Nnamani's N50b Business Empire Crumbles

The on-going investigation of former Governor of Enugu State, Dr. Chimaroke Nnamani by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)has begun to take its tolls on the businesses he allegedly established while holding sway as the state's chief executive.

Investigations by Sunday Independent revealed that many of the firms, all of which are under investigation by the EFCC, are experiencing low patronage or none at all as well as alleged mismanagement by those in charge.

The firms include Rainbownet, an integrated ICT company with the largest telecommunications network in the South East of Nigeria estimated to worth about N7 billion; Mea Mater Elizabeth College, a co-educational secondary school valued at over N5 billion, Renaissance University situated at Agbani and its Teaching Hospital which cost over N10 billion to build.

Others are Cosmo F.M Radio , a hi-tech digital radio station in Enugu valued at over N200 million; Capital City Motors Limited, which was the sole supplier of vehicles to the Enugu State government during Nnamani's administration valued at N1 billion and Hillgate Investments Limited, sole owners and managers of the famous Ebeano estates and other choice property in Enugu metropolis.

MORE HERE: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article01

Sep 16, 2008, 12:01 PM
War on War-on-Corruption: FG not cooperating with US over N21bn LNG bribe scam

Nigeria has not been cooperating with the United States government in the investigation of the N21bn Liquified Natural Gas bribery scandal, Empowered Newswire, a US-based Nigerian news agency reported.

Quoting a US source, the agency said that the US investigations had not benefited so much from Nigerian govt. cooperation and that such cooperation might be needed to actually go after the Nigerian culprits.

For instance, the US govt. statement announcing the confession of the ringleader of the bribery scandal, Albert Jackson Stanley, revealed that the US govt has received significant assistance in gathering evidence abroad and facilitating international cooperation.?

But while listing the names of the countries where such assistance was secured for the US government, Nigerias name was excluded.

According to the statement, only the governments of France, Italy, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom cooperated so far in the investigations.

Besides, Albert Jackson Stanley, the US citizen who recently confessed to being the ringleader in a scandal that included at least three successive past Nigerian government from Abacha to Obasanjo, said he would not reveal the names of the exact Nigerian officials who he paid the bribes.

Empowered Newswire reported, however, that more damaging details are emerging directly from the US Justice Department prosecuting the case, whose investigations are still in progress. ....

MORE HERE: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/sep/14/412.html

Sep 17, 2008, 11:53 PM
N1.3tr Transportation expenditure: Senate summons George, Agagu, Maduekwe, others

The Senate has summoned Governor Olusegun Agagu of Ondo State, his Bauchi counterpart, Isa Yuguda; Foreign Affairs Minister, Ojo Maduekwe, and Ambassador Kema Chikwe to explain their roles in an estimated N1.3 trillion expenditure in the Transportation Ministry between 1999 and 2007.

Others include former Chairman of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Bode George, as well as all former chief executives of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) and NPA; the present Transportation Minister, Diezani Allison-Madueke; Ministers of State, Felix Hassan Hyat (Aviation) and John Emeka Okechukwu (Water Transport).

The invitees are scheduled to appear next Monday before the Senate Ad-hoc Transportation Committee investigating management of funds and implementation of policies from 1999 to date.

The Senate resolved on April 29 to probe the sector based on a motion sponsored by Ayogu Eze (PDP, Enugu) and 58 other senators, including Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, and Senate Leader, Teslim Folarin.

Senator Heineken October Lokpobiri (PDP, Bayelsa) heads the 12-man committee.

Announcing the resumed public hearing on transportation sector probe on Monday, Lokpobiri stated that the committee had already received memoranda from stakeholders in marine and aviation sectors, adding that the panel would also make use of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) report on award of contracts in the NPA.

MORE HERE http://odili.net/news/source/2008/sep/16/707.html
Oshiomhole accuses Osunbor of squandering N50bn - He is used to making false allegations ?Govt

Edo state Action Congress (AC) governoship can-didate in 2007 election, Adams Oshiomhole, has accused the Governor Osheremien Osunbor-led administration of squandering over N50 billion.

Oshiomhole, who addressed newsmen at the AC secretariat in Benin City on Tuesday, alleged that the money was the amount received by the Osunbor administration since he assumed office on May 29, 2007.

According to him, Governor Osunbor, who he said had been living on borrowed robes, was running the finances of the state with his brother.

But in a reaction, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Dan Aigbavboa, said hearing such allegation from Oshio-mhole was not new, as he was used to making false allegations against Governor Osun-bor.

That evidence does he have to show that we have squandered any money? The government of Osunbor has zero-tolerance for corruption. The government believes in transparency and accountability

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/sep/17/611.html

Sep 18, 2008, 12:06 AM
Dariye stole N64.23bn


The Judicial Commission of Inquiry probing the administration of former Governor Joshua Dariye of Plateau State has been told that the former governor and his commissioner for finance, Emmanuel Agati, stole N64. 23 billion from the state through Irrevocable Standing Payment Orders (ISPO).

The revelation was made when an independent counsel for the commission, Mr. Okunade Olorundare, led one of the witnesses, Alhaji Sani Yahaya, in evidence.

Yahaya, who was the Director, Planning, Research and Statistics from 2000 to April 2008, gave an account of how Chief Dariye and Agati perfected the act while they were in office.

Reading from a portion of the White Paper from the adminstrative panel set by the present adminstration, Yahaya said the practice of resorting to the use of irrevocable standing payment orders was a convenient way of siphoning state resources.

Alhaji Yahaya said there was no trace of what the former government used the money deducted through ISPO for.

Sep 18, 2008, 11:31 PM
Unbudgeted Expenditure...

Reps query N1 trillion spent on petrol subsidy

House of Representatives Committee on Finance on Wednesday queried the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) over N1trillion spent on oil subsidy this year, saying such amount was not budgeted for.

The committee, headed by Honourable John Enoh, is currently undertaking the probe of ministries, parastatals and agencies of government over non- remittances of revenue into the Federation Account.

The committee made the declaration following disclosure by the Executive Secretary of PPPRA, Dr. Oluwole Oluleye, before the panel that over N1 trillion was already spent by the Federal Government this year to subsidise the price of petroleum products for consumers.

The secretary also admitted in his submissions to the panel that such money was never contained in the budget, explaining that the Ministry of Finance had always been carried along in taking that decision.

"For the Petroleum Support Fund which is approaching N1 trillion for the year, yes, you are correct sir. There is no budget for it for 2008 but all along also, I want to say there has really been no budget."

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/18092008/news/news9.html
How N832.6b spent on education in 8 years declined in real terms

A cursory look at the survey on the cost and financing of public education in Nigeria in eight years put at N832.6 billion, given by the Minister of Education, Dr. Igwe Aja-Nwacukwu, indicated that the country has invested so much in education.
While funding levels increased from N30.6 billion in 1999 to N205.2 billion in 2007, however, public expenditure on education declined in real terms, as less and less facilities, equipment, infrastructure and services were provided for the funds allocated.

What this means is that, not much have been achieved both quantitatively and qualitatively with that level of public expenditure on education. There is a lot more that the report, put together by the World Bank

Cost and financing of public education so high but nothing to show for such huge amountcountry office in Nigeria, the British Department of International Development, the Federal Ministry of Education and the office of the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) in the presidency, does not tell.

It had been in the public domain that most of the funds purportedly spent on education, were either diverted, misapplied, misappropriated, misused, wasted, siphoned away by top government officials and their clients through inflated contracts and graft or outrightly stolen.
A terribly high rate of inflation in the national economy, added to the decline in real terms of the public expenditure on education.

Breakdown of Expenditure

Year Allocation Percentage of Total Budget

1999 N30.6b 10.7 per cent

2000 N64.2b 6.1 per cent

2001 N74.9b 5.4 per cent

2002 N45.5b 2.9 per cent

2003 N63.5b 4.9 per cent

2004 N90.3b 3.9 per cent

2005 N106.7b 3.7 per cent

2006 N151.7b 7.4 per cent

2007 N205.2b 8.0 per cent

MORE HERE: http://www.vanguardngr.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=17167&Itemid=0
ICPC Quizzes Egwu Today

Former Governor of Ebonyi State, Sam Egwu, will today be quizzed by investigators of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) on allegations of fraud levelled against him.

A reliable source at the commission told Daily Independent on Wednesday that Egwu is expected to report at the commission's headquarters in Abuja today in the morning.

He maintained that the questioning is in continuation of the commission's investigation into his eight-year tenure following a petition forwarded to it by a group from the state.

The ex-governor is being investigated for his part in the alleged misappropriation of the state funds running into about N4 billion.

A copy of the petition to ICPC said he was alleged to have awarded contracts to his cronies and paid them large sums of money without the contractors executing the contracts.

"The government borrowed the sum of N4 billion from banks operating in the state outside the monthly allocation from Federation Account. "Apart from N1.5 billion obtained from the defunct All States Bank in April 2004 with a monthly refund of N75,512,292,581, Egwu's administration also borrowed a total of N3 billion from six banks with a monthly repayment of N168,892,311 and the facility was to be refunded in 12 months stretching to March 2007," the petition read

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/head/article06

Sep 19, 2008, 11:11 PM
House Committee to Probe $35bn Railway Contract

"The House of Representatives yesterday mandated its Committee on Land Transport to investigate the award and execution of contracts for the modernisation of railway system during the former President Olusegun Obasanjo administration.
The committees assignment followed the award of a $35 billion contract to a Chinese firm, China Engineering Construction Company (CCECC), to improve the rail system of transportation in the country without commensurate results.
The lawmakers, in a heated debate, decried the contract award, insisting that there was nothing on ground to justify such huge expenditure.
Ruling on a motion brought by Hon. Ike Chinwo (PDP Rivers) and 41 others, the House Speaker Dimeji Bankole directed the committee to conduct a public hearing on the issue and report back to the House within six weeks.
The lawmakers noted that despite the $35 billion four-phased 25-year contract, the sector is still plagued by obsolete locomotives and antiquated rail lines.
The Federal Government was said to have raised a loan of $2.5 billion from the China EXIM Bank to execute the contract.
Available statistics show that Nigeria rail lines currently stands at 3,557 kilometres with 3,505 kilometres on narrow gauge.
The House expressed concern that the first phase of the project spanning 1,315 kilometres from Lagos to Kano and estimated to cost $2.5 billion by international rate was awarded to CCECC at $8.3 billion.
It alleged that in spite of the $250 million paid to the firm for the take-off of the project, Nigeria was yet to witness any improvement in its rail transport system.
In his contribution to the debate, Hon. Igo Aguma (PDP Rivers) said there was more to the railway contract awards than Nigerians have been told.
He said CCECC and a certain Indian firm known as ONGC Mittal, were given preferential treatment in the award of the contracts during the Obasanjo regime on the condition that they would invest in other vital sectors of the economy including the oil industry.""

MORE: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=122932
Jang sacks commissioner, DPMs, others - Over mismanagement of N6.9bn

""Plateau State governor, Mr. Jonah Jang, has relieved the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Mr. Benahel Andong, of his appointment and the directors of finance and personnel management in the 17 local government areas of the state.

According to statement signed by the Director of Press Affairs, Mr. James Mannock and made available to the Nigerian Tribune in Jos, the governor sacked the commissioner and others for alleged mismanagement of N6.9 billion.

Nigerian Tribune learnt that the state government had commenced preparations to prosecute them by handing them over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) to get back the money.

It was learnt that the action of the government was sequel to the report of the committee which was submitted to the government on Monday and deliberated upon at the state executive meeting on Wednesday where the decision to sack the commissioner, 31 directors of personnel management (DPM) and 26 directors of finance and supply (DFS) in the 17 local government areas was taken.

Briefing newsmen at the end of the executive council meeting in Jos on Wednesday, the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Edward Pwajok, said the decision to relieve the directors of their positions was taken after deliberations on the white paper report of a panel set up to audit local government accounts""

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/19092008/news/news7.html

Sep 26, 2008, 02:21 PM
EFCC arrests Ondo Accountant-General

OPERATIVES of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), yesterday arrested the Accountant-General of Ondo State, Mrs. Folake Ogunnika.

EFCC sources said her arrest was to prevent the release of the N1bn unsecured loan to political office holders in the state.
But, the state government, in a swift reaction, described the invitation as routine and a normal administrative procedure.

The Information, Orientation and Mobilisation Commissioner, Mr. Eddy Olafeso, said: "We should not make a mountain out of a mole hill. It is not something that is serious. It is an attempt to clear the air on knotty issues."

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/content/view/17892/46/

Sep 26, 2008, 02:34 PM
On Ajeokuta wahala..

Ajaokuta: FG moves to retrieve looted equipment, cash

Global Infrastructures Holdings Limited under-invoiced 380,000 metric tonnes of concentrates to the tune of N2.4bn, the Interim Management Committee overseeing the Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited and the National Iron Ore Mining Company Itakpe has revealed.

This comes as the Federal Government said it was moving to recover the companies equipment and cash allegedly looted by GIHL.

The concentrates were produced at NIOMCO when GIHL held the concession rights and were sold mainly to Delta Steel Company at a price of $21 per tonne, which was far below the international price of iron ore and the prices offered to other companies in Nigeria .

GIHL, which had its 10 year concession of AJSC and NIOMCO revoked in April 2008 by the Federal Government following grievous breaches of the concession agreement, had bought Delta Steel outright from the government in 2004.

It, therefore, went to great lengths to ensure the smooth operations of the company much to the detriment of AJSCL and NIOMCO when it managed the plants.

A statement obtained by our correspondent in Abuja on Thursday quoted the Chairman of the interim management committee, Chief P.U Umunnakwe as saying that the IMC had submitted the report of the under-invoicing to government in May 2008.

According to him, the Interim Management Committee had initiated moves to recover some of the equipment, materials and scraps moved by Global Infrastructures Holdings Limited from the Ajaokuta plant to Delta Steel Company.

Umunnakwe explained that the committee had held meetings with the management of DSC on how to ensure the return of the equipment, materials and cash carted away by GIHL when it managed the two companies.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art2008092613362264

Sep 27, 2008, 08:51 PM
Nigeria We Hail Thee...

Govt bazaar
...N1.3tr blown on official allowances

Would you believe that a nation that budgets N2.6tr for a fiscal year spends at least half of that amount to service public office holders or political appointees whose benefit to the economy and society is still not clear.

Saturday Sun delved into the records to uncover the exact figures the officers earn, especially after the recent increase in wages of the president, his deputy and National Assembly members.

The cost of running Nigeria through the payment and settlement of officers makes it clear why projects and facilities remain neglected.

Expensive ‘democracy’

A good instance on how expensive it is to run Nigeria was an observation Saturday Sun made in Bayelsa State over two years ago. That was when the Vice President was the governor of that state. It was on about the second Sunday of July that year during a visit to the state that a certain Claver Kisikpo, then member of the House of Representatives for Ogbia Federal Constituency handed out 20 motorcycles, four sewing machines, and one sawing (dolmar) machine to his constituents. That is where the Vice President comes from.

He was, therefore, invited to be the special guest to hand over the items. But one was careful enough to count 19 vehicles in the governor’s entourage with at least three persons in one. These cars were fuelled, the occupants paid for the trip, and at last the cost of funding the trip of the governor’s team outweighed the cost of the items Kisikpo gave out which brought the team.

Increasing the load
The recent pronouncement by the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) to jerk up the salaries of political office holders has unfolded another reason Nigeria has been in motion without movement for almost half a century of independence.

In a nation now ravaged by hunger, disease, broken-down infrastructure, power failure, an economy that is on a tailspin and a terrible education sector, the cost of maintaining political office holders keeps rising geometrically especially with a bloated and burgeoning bureaucracy.
The 2008 budget of the Federal Government is N2.6tr, but N1.3tr is to be spent on political office holders’ salaries.

Last August, the RMAFC increased by over 100 per cent the basic salaries of legislators in the three tiers of government to fall in line with that of the executive arm and backdated it to last year.
This more is considered incredible in a country that falls below the world’s poverty line and where the minimum wage of the ordinary worker is N7,500. The United Nations Human Development Report (UNHDR) published for 2007/2008 confirms greater populations of Nigeria live in abject poverty. The current data disclose that 92.4 per cent of Nigerians live on $2 per day while 70.8 per cent live on $1.
But the RMAFC pay rise for the privileged was said to be routine in line with the level of inflation in the economy.

Not a big deal
A document on recommendation packages by the RMAFC for political, public and judicial office holders in Nigeria stated that the review was a function of changes in the basic fundamentals of the Nigeria economy, external reserves, Gross Domestic Products, growth rate, rate of inflation and the need for a living image by the new increase.

In this vein, the basic salary of a senator has increased from N993,697 to N2,484,245 while his counterpart in the House of Representatives had his jerked from N794,084 to N1,985,213.
Also increased are the benefits and allowances, which are between 45 and 200 per cent of their basic and annual salaries. Others allowances are vehicle maintenance, which was increased from 30 to 75 per cent; entertainment, from 10 to 30 per cent; utility, from 20 to 30 per cent. Also increased are personal assistant, 25 per cent; wardrobe, 25 per cent; domestic staff, 15 per cent; recess allowance, 10 per cent; newspaper, 15 per cent. Constituency and furniture allowances all went up by 300 per cent once in tenure; motor vehicle loan is 400 per cent repayable in six years.

Legislative extortion
From the basic salaries and their allowances, it costs the nation, on the conservative side, N28,568,965 to take care of a senator and N22,829,950 for a House of Representatives member annually. However, the lawmakers, who most Nigerians have come to regard as indolent fat cats and lotus-eaters, have other sources from which they take care of themselves that at the end, each of them would end up going home with between N50m and N100m annually.

N593bn for your councillors

For the third tier of government, it costs N593bn to take care of the chairmen and councillors in the 774 councils yearly.

Before the upward review, the annual basic salaries and allowances of elected council officials last February was N343b.
There are about 11,788 executive and legislative officers in the 774 local government areas in the country.

According to RMAFC document, the total annual salary of the executive arm of the councils is about N250bn and that of the legislature stands at about N343bn.

With the review, a local government area chairman’s annual basic salary is now N982,312. His deputy’s pay is N853.056. The chairman is entitled to 100 per cent of his annual basic salary for accommodation and 400 per cent of his basic salary as car loan while 300 per cent of the annual basic salary as furniture allowance. Others are 30 per cent of annual basic salary for utility bills and 75 per cent for domestic staff.

A councillor takes home a basic salary of N950.095. The legislative leader and his deputy in a local government council earn annual basic salary of N1m and N980, 095.
This is outside what the local government chairmen earmark as security votes. The security vote of some council chairmen is more than N5m a month. The councillors in some councils connive with the chairmen to approve high security votes because they have some cuts from it.

There are 28 ministries with 42 ministers. Each minister earns an annual basic salary of N2.026m, which is at par with that of the Chief of Staff to the President, Secretary to the Federal Government, Head of Service, Chairman of Commission. The review also saw the President and Vice President earning N3,515m and N3.032m respectively.

The federal executive officers earn a total of N8,604,590,680 in salaries alone. Their allowances calculated alongside the basic salary brings the cost of keeping them in office to N98.3b representing over 1000 per cent increase.

In the team of the president, the deputy and their wives are 70 political appointees who are one form of special assistant, secretary to the special assistant and senior special assistants. Earlier last year the FG had announced that no political appointees should earn less than N300,000 per month. That gives an idea of at least N3.6m statutory expenses, excluding allowances that. For 70 officers, it is at least N252 million that goes into retaining their services.

NASS, states and Assemblies
The 469 federal legislators cost the country N66.4b annually to take care of. For the 36 state governments, there are at least 2,664 officials in the executive arm. Also, there are 1,152 state Houses of Assembly members. They all receive a salary totalling N36b annually,
Every increase in the overheads of the political office holders brings down the amount set aside for capital projects.

In 1998, pay roll and overheads of political office holders was N124b and by 2002, it jumped to N493. The same year, capital projects came down from 63 per cent to 32 per cent.
It is estimated that the salary review would cost the Federal Government N1736, state governments, N360b and local governments, N5936n.

Labouring for appointees
Recently, the Federal Government said it has spent N862b in education in the last eight years. When this is placed side by side with what is will take to pay the political officers in local governments areas, the reason why the education sector is in comatose becomes clearer.
Going by the figures from the RMAFC, between 1999 and 2007, not less than N5tr has been spent on political office holders in the three tiers of government.

LINK: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2008/sept/27/national-27-09-2008-001.htm

Oct 3, 2008, 01:13 PM
The mind-boggling endless corruption continues!


The Renewed Looting of Rivers State: Chief of Staff to Governor Rotimi Amaechi Bolts with N300 Million, Rivers State Accounts Frozen by EFCC. (http://www.saharareporters.com/www/news/detail/?id=739)

As the extensive looting of the Rivers State treasury continues, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has ordered the freezing of two accounts belonging to the state government at the Zenith bank in Port Harcourt. The Chief of Staff to the governor, Nyeson Wike, in connivance with Zenith Bank officials at the Azikiwe Road branch, opened one of the accounts (Number 601-091-6587) on March 27th 2008 with the fictitious name, "Harrison Ba Princewill." The fictitious account was being run by Wike on behalf of Governor Rotimi Amaechi.

SaharaReporters investigators noted that when it was opened, the account lacked such required information as passport photographs and information about the next of kin of "Harrison B. Princewill". However, the account was fully active and enjoying daily inflows of cash such that by April 26 2008, that is, within one month, it had already been credited with N3.6 billion ($30 million).

As the money swelled in Zenith bank, officials notified Wike that the account was being monitored for suspicious activities. On June 5th 2008, Mr. Wike colluded with a Zenith bank staff named "Mohammed" to change the account details and convert it to a "Government House Account". "Harrison Ba Princewill" then became a depositor to the new "Government House Account".
Just about the same time, another account directly controlled by Nyeson Wike (Number 602-500-949) at the same branch of Zenith Bank in Port Harcourt began to witness a flurry of activities. Between June 5 and July 3rd 2008, the sum of N223 million passed into the account from the new "Government House Account" and several illegal transfers followed afterwards.

And then, on September 5, 2008 at exactly 3:30p.m., Mr. Wike withdrew the sum of N300 million from his account at Zenith Bank, and promptly disappeared into thin air.

Governor Rotimi Amaechi was the speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly when former governor Peter Odili elevated the act of treasury looting to a state policy. During Odili's tumultuous tenure, Amaechi was severally fingered in the massive looting of state resources as initially documented by SaharaReporters.

However, what appeared to be the persecution Amaechi suffered in the hands of his former mentor and collaborator, Odili, made the public totally forget that he was part of the pack of wolves that ran the hitherto wealthy state to a financial mess.

Amaechi now seems back with a big bang, using fronts and cronies to wreak unprecedented damage on the state treasury. The situation is so bad that even the normally flat-footed leadership of the EFCC seems unable to stomach the looting.

SaharaReporters investigations further reveal that Amaechi's extensive money laundering operations are hidden from the public eye with the veil of the "Rule of Law". Lawyers to the Rivers state government has so far stalled any attempt to investigate Rivers State officials directly, by insisting, in letters written to the EFCC, that the state officials are currently busy. They claimed in letters to the agency that Mr. Wikes was traveling, but did not disclose his destination to the EFCC. A source at the EFCC told SaharaReporters that so far, the agency has not succeeded in interrogating the suspects because Mr. Adoki Bello Mohammed (SAN), one of the lawyers to Amaechi insisted that he must accompany his clients to the EFCC at his own convenience.

Of the two Rivers state government accounts frozen last Wednesday by the EFCC, Wike had withdrawn about N400 million from the converted "Government House Account." The remainder of N3 billion remains frozen. The other account had N27 billion left in it.

Oct 3, 2008, 07:49 PM
Post Goodluck Jonathan....

Bayelsa judicial commission to probe missing N150m

Attempts by the Bayelsa State House of Assembly to probe the activities of the state Ministry of Justice over alleged disappearance of N150 million approved for the procurement of law books by the immediate past administration got a boost yesterday with the inauguration of a judicial commission of inquiry to look into the controversial expenditure provided in the 2006 budget.

The assembly had penultimate week passed a resolution calling on Governor Timipre Sylva to set up a judicial panel of inquiry to look into the alleged disappearance of the fund.

Though the assembly had earlier issued a letter of summon to the former Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Hon. Seriake Dickson, to appear before it to explain his role in the controversial fund but the latter approached a competent court of law to secure an injunction restraining the state House of Assembly from inviting him and that an evidence of payment for the sum be made available.

The commission which has Justice Boloukuromo Ugo as chairman is also expected to investigate related contracts or projects of the Ministry of Justice within the period under review

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/content/view/18406/44/

Oct 8, 2008, 07:20 PM

FG loses N3tn in five years Bankole •

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Dimeji Bankole, on Tuesday said the Federal Government lost over N3tn which revenue generation agencies failed to remit to the coffers of the Federal Government.

Bankole spoke at the inauguration of DAARSAT from the stable of DAAR Communications Limited. He said his earlier assertion that the Federal Government lost N1.5tn in 10 years through the process, was wrong.

I was only scratching the issue on the surface then. I never knew it was worse. The situation is worse than I had earlier painted,he stated.

Speaking at the 2008 conference of the Nigeria Bar Association which took place about a month ago in Abuja, Dimeji had said the nation was losing so much money through the criminal activities of the alleged revenue generation agencies.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/oct/8/405.html

Oct 8, 2008, 07:28 PM

EFCC raises panel to question Rivers State Governor Chibuike Ameachi over the claim by his Chief of Staff

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission may have constituted a high-powered panel of senior investigators to question Rivers State Governor Chibuike Ameachi over the claim by his Chief of Staff, Mr. Nyeson Wike, that he received a cash gift of N120m from him (Amaechi).

The claim by Wike, who alongside with the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Magnus Abe, is undergoing interrogation by the EFCC, was contained in a confessional statement he made before the anti-graft agency.

According to the statement, a copy of which was obtained by our correspondent in Abuja on Tuesday, the money, which was deposited in Wikes personal account with a Port Harcourt branch of a new generation bank, was for him (Wike) to build a house.

A highly-placed EFFC source, who disclosed the constitution of the panel to one of our correspondents, said Amaechi would be interrogated after Thursday when he is expected to return to the country from an overseas trip.

He said, The panel is mandated to meet with the governor, at his earliest convenience and place of choice, to clarify some issues alleged by the suspects, especially on whether he gave a cash gift of N120m to his chief of staff.

If he says yes, then, we expect to know the source from which that kind of largesse came from.?

MORE HERE: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/oct/8/420.html

Oct 10, 2008, 09:16 AM
Ladies and Gentlemen, honestly, my sincere feeling at this juncture, taking into consideration the fact that kleptomania has become the favourite pastime in Abuja, is that of utter shock! Untill you start to take a serious look at corruption in Nigeria, you will never know what that country is going through in the hands of her rulers! Right now, one can safely suggest that governance nay development have all developed wings and taken flight ... It seems to me that what still keeps this convulsing contraption a dazed Lady Lugard named Nigeria "working" is this desperate penchant by one group of politicains to outdo the other in every act of infamy! The determination to keep the tap flowing..

Hardly anyday passes, without a newmedia announcing the revelation of squandered billions from one ministry to the other without anybody being seriously purnished for this or congent actions taken to recover the loots. What you see is the dramatisation of the anti corruption campaign! Even recovered loots are looted again!. Governors are pratically swallowing every single allocation that comes to their helpless states while ministries have become the engine of corruption! And Villager felix wonders:How can a society develope when almost all her resources are wickedly stollen and starshed away in foreign private accounts??? What is the motivation behind this rare determination to loot ALL resources in sight??? Can armed robbers develope a state??? Can a sane man loot at this unbeleivabe speed???Are these people still part of the human specie??? What is going on in Lugards Nigeria?!?:confused1:confused1:confused1

NPA squandered N453.6bn in 8 years - Minister

THE Senate was informed of how N453.589 billion was squandered by the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) between 1999 and 2008 on Thursday.

The Senate also queried the N9.450 billion extra- budgetary allocation to the Ministry of Transportation. Members of the Senate ad hoc Committee probing the management of funds and implementation of policies in the transportation sector during the period were stunned when the Minister of State for Water Transportation, Prince John Okechukwu Emeka, disclosed that N453.589 billion was spent by the NPA without proper authorisation nor were there genuine documents to back it up.

The minister had appeared before the committee during Thursday’s public/investigation hearing at the National Assembly to present their position on funds allocation, as well as Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and expenditure of the ministry.

Prince Emeka said during the period under investigation, the NPA generated N548.336 billion, out of which only N11.362 billion was remitted to the Federation Account.

He explained that N453.589 billion was spent, but without specifying how and on what the amount was expended on. The minister also stated that during the period in question, the water sector (main ministry) had a total appropriation of N5.828 billion, but an additional N9.450 billion unappropriated sum was released under the Chinese rehabilitation programme and other releases under the excess crude oil account.

But the committee queried the spending of the sums and directed the minister to provide all documentary evidences concerning the handling of the money – the N453.589 billion squandered from the internally generated revenue and the N9.450 billion extra-budgetary allocations.

The committee frowned on what it described as flagrant disregard for the budgetary process by ministries and federal agencies. Reacting to the disclosure on the N9.450 billion, the chairman of the committee, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, said the practice was condemnable.

Lokpobiri also expressed the committee’s anger at the conflicting figures presented by the minister, pointing out that the committee could not make any sense from the figures so far presented


Oct 10, 2008, 09:25 AM
EFCC arraigns Amaechi's aide over N5bn fraud

The Chief of Staff to Rivers State Governor Rotimi Amaechi, Mr. Ezebunwo Wike, was on Thursday arraigned before an Abuja High Court for allegedly converting over N5bn belonging to the state into personal use.

His arraignment by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission coincided with the demand by the state government for the payment of N3bn compensation to Wike by the EFCC.

Two of the charges read, "That you, Wike, sometime between 2007 and 2008, at Abuja in the Abuja Judicial Division of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, converted to your own use, N3.5bn, belonging to the Rivers State Government, and you thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 309 of the Penal Code Cap 532 of the Federation of Nigeria 1990.

"That you, Wike, sometime between 2007 and 2008 did dishonestly convert to your own use, N129m belonging to the state, and you thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 309 of the Penal Code Cap 532 of the Federation of Nigeria 1990."

The Chief of Staff, who pleaded not guilty to a seven-count charge brought against him, was however granted bail in the sum of N50m by Justice Adebukola Banjoko.

He is also to produce two sureties that must be resident in the Federal Capital Territory

MORE HERE: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art2008100923273310

Oct 10, 2008, 09:33 AM
NIWA to account for N6.4bn unspent funds - Senate

The Senate Ad hoc Committee probing the state of transportation in the country has raised questions on the whereabouts of N6.4bn unspent funds accruing to the National Inland Water Ways.

The agency, appearing before the committee on Thursday, could not account for the balance of N5.7bn, being unspent funds from the budgetary releases between 1999 and 2007.

It also could not account for N676m being the balance from the total Ecological Funds received from the Ministry of Environment during the same period.

The Managing Director, NIWA, Zubairu Yakub, said the agency had an appropriation of N30.07bn between 1999 and 2007.

He said it got N12.9bn and spent N7.2bn. But the report he submitted to the committee did not include explanations on the balance of N5.7bn of the funds released to NIWA.

The committee also accused NIWA of spending its internally-generated revenue without resorting to appropriation by the National Assembly.

NIWA admitted that it generated N2.36bn within the period and spent N2.99bn, remitting only N18m to the Federation Account.

A member of the committee, Senator Felix Bajomo, said the silence by the agency on the whereabouts of the balances was worrisome.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art2008100923412585

Oct 10, 2008, 09:37 AM
N210m scam: EFCC raids NAHCO offices, removes documents

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Thursday raided the offices of the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company Plc and removed files and documents to aid its investigation into an alleged mismanagement of N210m belonging to the organisation.

The commission had on Wednesday, arrested the NAHCO's Managing Director, Mr. Bates Sule, along with other officers in connection with the alleged scam.

A source in the commission, who informed our correspondent of the development in Abuja, said the EFCC operatives had gone to the NAHCO headquarters in Lagos and removed several documents from the offices of the managing director and other top officials.

He said, "The operatives had demanded and got the documents and other files detailing the financial dealings of the organisation in the past few years, as well as vouchers that described the mismanagement of funds belonging to the organisation."

Sule, still being detained by the commission, was said to be undergoing interrogation and would soon be charged to court.

The NAHCO boss was arrested following allegations that he bought N150m worth of shares for himself with funds belonging to the organisation.

He was also accused of having unilaterally inflated an unnamed contract executed in the Port Harcourt office of his company from N18m to N60m.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art2008100923325748

Oct 16, 2008, 12:08 PM
Dirty deals...

Senate Probes $5.9bn Escravos Gas Contract

The Senate Committee on Gas Resources was yesterday told how Chevron Nigeria Limited allegedly inflated the Escravos Gas-to-Liquid (EGTL) project from $1.7 billion to $5.9 billion without due process.
The Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) said it did not give Chevron the approval to increase the contract sum.

But the Acting Managing Director of Chevron, Mr. Olasupo Shadiya, said the company wrote NNPC on the upward review of the contract sum but that the NNPC did not formally give its approval.
The exchanges occurred at the public hearing organised by the Committee, under the Chairmanship of Senator Osita Izunaso, which opened an investigation into how the agreement was reviewed to a reimbursable contract sum of $5.9 billion.
Chevron and NNPC in collaboration with Sasol, a South African company, were to build a 34,000 bdp plant, using a similar improved technology to the Qatar Oryx GTL.

But the Qatar project was constructed at the cost of $1 billion, a development that got the Senate committee worried.
NNPC Executive Director (in charge of Exploration), Mr. Chris Ogienwonyi, who represented the GMD of the Corporation, Abubakar Yardua, told the committee that the increment was not in the interest of the NNPC.
He said that in all, only $2.72 billion was approved by the NNPC owing to the tension in the Niger Delta region where the project is sited.
Ogienwonyi told the committee that the delay in the project on account of the tension in the region had necessitated a shift from February 2009, which is the initial completion date, to December 2010.

But under questioning by the committee, he said the NNPC audit panel, which reviewed the contract, had discovered that Chevron unilaterally reviewed upward the contract sum without recourse to due process.
According to him, the contract was twice reviewed without the approval of the NNPC, which is a junior partner in the Joint Venture Agreement on the construction of the EGTL plant.
Shadiya, however, insisted the company wrote NNPC on the upward review of the contract sum.

According to him, We requested for these approvals but we did not receive any approval from the NNPC; we still have the letters we wrote to the NNPC but we did not get any response from them.He told the committee that the increment was necessitated by the the volatile situation in the Niger Delta, the depreciating value of the dollar, the need to beef up more security, training of the staff and construction of fence as well as designs at the site.
Former GMD of NNPC, Dr. Jackson Gaius Obasaki, who also appeared before the committee said that even though the project was in the interest of the country, he was not disposed to the sum of the contract and therefore, he would not have approved it.

According to him, I would not have approved the contract at $2.7 billion when I was the GMD of the NNPC; in fact nobody would have brought it to me.

When I was there, we did not approve any contract of such, because the logic is common; a contractor wants to collect all your monies for doing a job for you, while you, on the other side, try to make him do the job for even free; therefore, nobody would agree to award this type of contract on a total reimbursable basis.
The danger is that the contract could run into $11 billion at the end of the day; and I dont believe that even Chevron themselves would have accepted to give such an open cheque to a contractor if they were the owners of the contract.

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=125110

Oct 17, 2008, 08:20 AM
Missing Billions....

EFCC Quizzes Suspended PPPRA Boss

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday quizzed the suspended Executive Secretary of the Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), Oluwole Oluleye, for his alleged role in the disappearance of N64 billion from the Petroleum Support Fund.
The embattled PPPRA boss was said to have been questioned over what happened to N310 billion extra budgetary allocation made to the agency between 2006 and 2008.

THISDAY checks at the EFCC revealed that the anti-corruption commission findings from an investigation into the financial dealings of PPPRA showed that in 2006, the agency overspent its budget by N110 billion without proper account.

The source added that in 2007, the agency, against the N100 billion appropriated to it, allegedly spent N280 billion, thereby overshooting its budget by N180 billion, while as at August this year, it had allegedly spent over N20 billion more than what was appropriated for 2008.
According to the source, the management of PPPRA between 2006 and 2008, spent N64 billion from the Petroleum Support Fund meant to provide subsidy for the distribution of petroleum products by oil marketers allegedly to some unqualified companies.

One of the conditions for benefiting is that the marketers must have depots and branded outlets. Twenty (28) oil marketers registered for the support programme out of which five (5) companies which did not meet that required condition were given N64 billion between 2006 and 2008,?nbsp; the source disclosed.

THISDAYgathered that the suspension of the executive secretary was based on the submission of a preliminary report over allegation of fraud, while EFCC operatives were still on the trail of all the diverted money.
Head of Media and Publicity at the EFCC, Femi Babafemi, confirmed that the commission was investigating the agency but declined further comments as he said investigations were on-going.

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=125408

Oct 17, 2008, 08:29 AM
$1.054m SoldiersAllowances Diverted, Says Witness

One of the witnesses in the ongoing trial of soldiers and officers before a court martial sitting in Akure, Col. Lasbry Odunwa, shocked the audience at the resumed sitting of the court when he told the Brigadier Ishaya Bauka-led panel that $1.054 million was allegedly diverted by the Army Finance Department.

The amount meant for payment of the 15th Nigerian Battalion (NIBATT 15) of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL), which comprised mainly officers and men drawn from the Akure base, was allegedly wrongly collected by one Col. A. A. Awotoye, who was one of the four officers arraigned on charges of negligence and stealing.

According to the witness, Awotoye was said to have collected the amount despite the fact that NIBATT 14, which he commanded and which was mainly drawn from the 72 Para-Battalion in Makurdi, had earlier collected its own allowances.

Odunwa, Commander of Second Division Provost and Head of Military Police, told the court that the fact was unveiled when his team was interrogating the Deputy Director of Finance at the Army Headquarters, Lt. Col. P.A. Baba.
The non-remittance of the money released by the UN as allowances to members of NIBATT 15, led to the July 4 protest by the soldiers who blocked the Ondo entrance into Akure for several hours, held their commander hostage and disrupted socio-economic activities in the state capital.

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=125410

Oct 23, 2008, 07:55 PM
N761m fraud: Court fixes Oct 31 for ruling

A Federal high court sitting in Abuja yesterday fixed October 31, this year for ruling on a request by a 34-year-old native sorcerer, Mr Mathew Sonoma (aka Perekambowei Ogah), for bail.
Sonoma is standing trial before the high court for allegedly defrauding ex - Chairman of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Ambassador Sam Edem to the tune of N761million
The high court fixed the date to enter its ruling yesterday after both parties adopted their written briefs on the bail application.

At the last adjourned date, the Police had arraigned Sonoma (aka Perekambowei Ogah), before the Federal high court sitting in Abuja for allegedly defrauding former Chairman of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Ambassador Sam Edem.

The presiding high court judge, Justice G O Kolawole who sat on the matter on the last adjourned date however issued bench-warrant against Sonoma's alleged accomplice, one Mr Kakas Amgbari.

But Kolawole J. ordered that Sonoma should be remanded in prison custody within the jurisdiction of the court pending the time his bail application would be heard and to allow the police to fish out Kaka wherever he was hiding.

Both Sonoma and Kaka were alleged to be working on the ambassador together to allegedly extort money from him under false pretext but only the native doctor had fallen into the net of the police.

Kaka was said to be at large presently. Vanguard reports that the police, had, more than a month ago, arraigned the former Chairman of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Ambassador Sam Edem himself before an Abuja high court sitting in Wuse over allegation that he unlawfully spent about N800 million belonging to the commission on a sorcerer.

Edem was said to have paid a total N510million to the sorcerer called Dr Perebakowe Ogah alias Matthew Sonoma from the N800million allegedly stolen by him from the commission's account.
Edem though denied the allegation but the police insisted and went further to say that he allegedly spent the said sum to secure the services of the sorcerer to enable him get contracts from the Akwa Ibom state
Governor , Chief Godwill Akpabio and to kill the NDDC MD, Mr Timi Alaibe.

The police, at the time, told the court that the spiritualist, (Sonoma) whom the NDDC boss allegedly contacted confessed to the police that he was paid various sums of money so that he could help him ( Edem) make some sacrifices to be able to retain his position as the commission's Chairman.

The police gave the spiritualist's name as Perekambowei Ogah. The police claimed that Ogah told them that he received three requests from Edem.

"I got three requests from Edem: the first was to work on the Akwa-Ibom state governor, Dr. Godswill Akpabio to secure contracts from him; the second was to kill NDDC M.D, Mr. Timi Alaibe, who also works in the same office with him to enable him have his way in decision making processes and the third was to work on Vice President Goodluck Jonathan to always provide him support if there is any plan to remove him.

"For the above tasks, I charged N570million, for which Edem paid in instalments of N220million, N50million and N40million respectively amounting to N310million with a balance of N260million."

Following the revelations, President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua, had, ordered the arrest
of Edem.

He spent a long time in detention before he came out on bail.

Although Edem is still denying the allegation, Sonoma was brought before the Federal high court to face a 15-count charge of obtaining money from Edem under false pretext.

In the 15-count charge preferred against the native doctor, he was said to have sent several text messages between late last year (2007) and early this year, to demand for huge amount of monies from the NDDC boss.

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/content/view/19966/47/

Oct 25, 2008, 08:03 PM
N5.4bn Scam: Nnamani Wants Charges Quashed

The Former Governor of Enugu State and a Senator of the Federal Republic, Dr. Chimaroke Nnamani has asked a Federal High Court in Lagos to quash charges of money laundering and illegal diversion of about N5.4 billion state funds to foreign accounts levelled against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The anti-graft agency has dragged the Senator and 11 others to court over alleged money laundering offences.

At the resumption of proceedings on Friday, the Senator, through his lawyer, Mr. Ricky Tarfa (SAN), in the application for quashing of charges levelled against him, questioned the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the matter.

In the alternative, the applicant is seeking an order declaring that the EFCC's (establishment) Act, 2004 violates Section 214(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 and all measures, steps taken and things done by the commission pursuant therefore, are unconstitutional, null and void.

Sequel to the above, the applicant wants his name struck out of the charge and discharged accordingly.

MORE: http://www.tribune.com.ng/25102008/news/news4.html

Oct 25, 2008, 08:07 PM
N3.7bn scam: Wike asks court to quash fraud charge against him

Rivers State Chief of Staff, Mr Ezebunwo Nyesom Wike, yesterday prayed an Abuja high court sitting at Gudu to quash a multiple charge of criminal breach of trust and illegal diversion of a whopping sum of N3.7billion belonging to the state government preferred against him.
He is contending that the court lacked the jurisdiction to try him.

Wike's trial was expected to commence yesterday but for the objection he brought to challenge his trial.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission trying him yesterday asked for adjournment to respond to the objection.

According to the commission, the objection was just served on it and would need time to study it.
The trial high court had no option than to adjourn hearing in the case till a later date in December.

It would be recalled that the EFCCC had about two weeks ago arraigned Wike before the Abuja high court for allegedly stealing, in less than one year, a whopping sum of N3.7billion belonging to the state government.

He was docked at exactly 1:46 pm on the day.

His arraignment came 24- hours after a Rivers State high court sitting in Port-Harcourt issued an interim order directing EFCC to release him from detention forthwith and put on hold his proposed prosecution pending determination of a motion on notice.

But respite came his way, same day, as the presiding high court judge, Justice Abimbola Banjoko granted him bail in the sum of N50million with two sureties in like sum resident in Abuja and who must swear to affidavit of means.

MORE HER: http://www.vanguardngr.com/content/view/20133/42/

Oct 25, 2008, 08:43 PM
ICPC Quizzes Ehindero over N557m Arms Deal

The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has quizzed Former Inspector General of Police, Sunday Ehindero over his involvement in the N557 million arms deal.

The embattled ex-IGP was grilled on Thursday by operatives of the anti-corruption commission around 5.30 p.m. and was left to go several hours later.

Ehindero, who has been outside the shores of Nigeria came back from an International Bar Conference he attended in Buenos Aires, Argentina to explain the whereabouts of N16.5 million interest accrued on the N557 million given to him by the Bayelsa State Government while serving as IGP.

In an electronic mail he sent to the Chairman of ICPC, Emmanuel Ayoola, the former IGP promised he would be available to answer questions posed by ICPC investigators involving the N557 million arms deal not later than October 24.

Ehindero was however not detained by the commission but told to come back for more interrogation at an undisclosed date.

This might not be unconnected with the absence of the chairman who has been on official assignments outside Abuja since last week.

ICPC and Ehindero have been on a collision course after several attempts to get him to appear before the commission failed since he was last grilled in April.

He requested the commission to forward his invitation letter through the serving IGP, Mike Okiro but Ayoola refused saying, "I believe that once the Inspector-General of Police has ceased to be a serving member of the Police Force, we do not need to bother the incumbent Inspector General serving the former IGP with the post master of the IGP. We do not have any obligation under the law to be turning the process of serving our communication to any public officer, retired or serving. I thought it was more courteous to treat Mr. Sunday Ehindero as a citizen rather than continue to think of him as somebody serving under an IGP."

A preliminary investigation by the ICPC uncovered that the ex-IG received about N1 billion from the former Bayelsa State Governor, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, who is now the Vice President to assist the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) to buy arms and ammunition but allegedly cornered about N557.9 million during his tenure.

The money was allegedly lodged in fixed deposit accounts in two separate banks and accrued N16.5 million interest, which was not remitted to the Federal Government.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/head/article03

Oct 26, 2008, 08:48 AM
Just when you start to think you have seen the worst as it regards mis appropriation of public funds in Nigeria, then this.....

EFCC Investigates N3.3Tn Fraud

DID the federal and state governments short-changed local governments to a hefty sum of N3.3 trillion? If they did, was it with the help of local government chairmen, who have countless petitions against them at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)?

Have the federal and state governments willfully and deliberately turned a deaf ear to pronouncements of the Supreme Court simply to rip-off local government councils?

These and many more confounding questions the EFCC is currently seeking answers to.

The anti-graft commission has repeatedly said it was going to beam the searclight on the management of the huge funds at the third tier of government.

Indeed, it had been rifling through a mountain of petitions against previous and present holders of the highest office in the councils nationwide.

However, it was gathered that one of its breakthroughs might have come through a company, which has consultancy services with some councils in the country.

As soon as the company sent a petition claiming it had evidence of mismanagement of trillions of Naira, the financial crimes agency's boss, Mrs. Farida Waziri, "wrote an enthusiastic response asking for details," a source said.

LINK: http://www.guardiannewsngr.com/news/article02//indexn2_html?pdate=261008&ptitle=EFCC%20Investigates%20N3.3Tn%20Fraud

Oct 26, 2008, 08:53 AM
details of the misused trillions

that we have discovered that sections 162 and 313 of the 1999 constitution dealing with the distributable pools accounts and systems of revenue allocation in force between january 1st 1998 and 31st december, 1998, which is still in force has been amended by presidential orders since may, 2002 in a manner severally described as illegal and unconstitutional by the revenue mobilisation allocation and fiscal commission (rmafc), having not been presented by the president to the national assembly in line with section 162 subsection (2) of the 1999 constitution.

That contrary to the 1979 and 1999 constitutions of nigeria, the federal military government in 1991 by decree (now) act no. 3 established a local governemnt educaiton authroity etc, which transferred the funding and management of primary education to local government councils.

That by decree (now) act no.96 of 1993, the federal military government established the national primary educaiton commission (bnpec), which function, among others, included the funding and management of primary education from "national fund" to be deducted from the federation account.

That in implementing the provisions of decree (now) act no.96 of 1993, the federal ministry of finance, following a letter from the secretary to the federal military government dated 5th september, 1994 with reference no. Sgf.g/s.14/ti/i/3452, directed that funding of primary education should be deducted at source i.e. Statutory allocation of local governments at the federation account instead of national fund from the federation account.

That the national primary education commission (npec) conducted an audit of teaching and non-teaching staff of primary school teachers throughout the country from april 1994 to august 1994, but the result was inflated leading to the deduction in september 1994 of the sum of n880 million for the payment of primary school teachers' salaries.

That a repeat exercise of the teachers' audit conducted by the national primary education commission, federal ministry of education, federal ministry of finance, ministry of states and local government affairs, and revenue mobilization allocation and fiscal commission (rmafc) produced a contentious figure of n1.4 billion, as what was required to pay primary school teachers' salaries in a month with effect from march, 1995.

That the ministry of states and local government affairs in a letter to the ministry of finance, attention: Accountant-general of the federation (agf) dated 10th march, 1995, ref. Mslg/fmpe/301/vol.11/141, suggested that contributions by local government councils towards funding of primary education from their statutory allocation should not exceed n440 million a month.

That the deduction of n1.4 billion a month for the funding of primary education from the statutory allocations of local governments from the federation account led to a syndrome called "zero allocaiton" to some local government areas including aboh mbaise, ahiazu mbaise, ezinihitte, among others, from september, 1995. Allocation sheets of september 1995, march 1999 and august 1999 are attached.

That in august 1999, the office of the accountant-general of the federation (agf) released the sum of n1 million each to aboh mbaise, ahiazu mbaise, ezinihitte, ikeduru, mbaitoli, and owerri north lgas of imo state among 325 other lgas in nigeria who received zero allocation from the federation account for the month of august 1999. Special allocation sheet for the month of august 1999 attached.

That the federal ministry of finance made unconstitutional deduction from the statutory allocation of local governments in favour of the following:
15% pension funds;

15% training funds;

5% emirate / traditional rulers councils

loans for teachers' salaries

police algon prado jeep algon/mathan comprehensive health centres, etc

allocation sheets of march 1999, august 1999 and april 2000 attached.

That the supreme court in a case fgn vs. Abia & 35ors popularly called "resource control suit" in its ruling on 5th april, 2002 held as follows:
Proper mode of distribution of funds accruing to federation account:

"the provision of section 1(d) of the allocation of revenue (federation account, etc) act as amended on (special funds) is inconsistent with the a provisions of section 162 (3) of the 1999 constitution. Such deductions from the federation account are, unconstitutional".

However, there is evidence of federal government deducting the "special funds" from the federation account since may 2002 to date. Also from january 1995, the federal government commenced the deduction from the federation account of 7% to nigeria customs service and 4% to federal inland revenue services, as cost of collection is illegal and unconstitutional. August 2008 allocation sheet attached and marked "annexures 5".

Whether external debt and servicing thereof are payable from federation account:

"the supreme court held that it was unlawful to deduct moneys from the federation account to service or pay debts owed by the government. But as at july 2005, the federal government deducted $2.4 billion local government funds at the federation account to settle the paris club debts contrary to the resolution of the house of representatives that such debts should be settled from the consolidated revenue of the federal government."

tier of governemnt responsible for primary educaiton:

"in so far as primary education is concerned, a local government council only participates with the state government in its provision and maintenance. The function obviously remains with the state government."

prior to this judgment, primary school teachers' salaries and allowances were deducted at source from the statutory allocation of local governments at the federation account and paid to national primary education commission since september 1994, contrary to decree (now) act no.96 of 1993. The financial implications of deduction of n1.4 billion as against n440 million led to over-deduction of n960 million a month from march 1995 to april 2002 amounting to over n1.5 trillion.

That as a result of the 5th april, 2002 supreme court judgment, the federal government allocated the share of the local governments at the federation account to their state governments in line with section 162 subsections (3) and (5). August 2005 allocation sheet attached.

That section 162 (6) mandates the state governments to maintain a special account into which allocations from the federation account and 10% share of the internally generated revenue (igr) of the state, which shall be distributed in like with section 162 (8), has been breached by the 36 states through the unconstitutional enactment of state joint local government account laws. A copy attached ands marked "annexure 7".

That following the enactment of compulsory universal basic education act in 2004, our firm petitioned the accountant-general of the federation (agf) ref: Cari/agf/01/05 dated 31st may, 2005, over the need to reconcile the deductions made from the statutory allocation of local government councils at source from september 1994 to april 2002, and the allocation of 2% share of the consolidated revenue of the federal government to ube.
This followed our discovery that the national primary education commission (now) universal basic education commission had become a conduit for diverting over n1.5 trillion of local government funds at the federation account in the name of paying primary school teachers' salaries since septemebr 1994. The reply from the office of the accountant-general of the federation with ref: Fd/rs/29/2vol 11/ddf dated 16th june 2005, is hereby attached and marked "annexure 8".

That our firm forwarded the above petition to the senate committee on anti-corruption through one of the senators representing imo state, senator francis nzeribe, ref: Cari/sfn/01/05 and dated 6th june, 2005, as well as house of representatives committee on pensions ref: Cari/hcp/01/05, through hon. Independence ogunewe, representing ahiazu/ezinihitte and deputy chairman, committee on pensions. Acknowledged copies are hereby attached and marked "annexures 9(a) & (b)".

That our firm petitioned the then honourable minister of education, dr. (mrs) oby ezekwesili, ref: Cari/fme/03/06 and dated 26th june, 2006, over the senate resolution to call in efcc/icpc to investigate the diversion of councils' funds by state governors on 25th april, 2006. The reply with ref: Hme/fme/19/xviii/14 and dated 24th july, 2006, is hereby attached.

That our firm followed-up the meeting called by the honourable minister of education above and met with the executive secretary of ubec on 21st august, 2006, over the continued supply of inflated teachers' data, which has resulted in over-deduction of accounts of the local governments at the state joint local government account by the state governments.
Our report was forwarded to the minister of education, ref: Cari/fme/05/06 and dated 13th september, 2006. The reply with ref: Es/we/214/vol.11/149 and dated 31st october, 2006, 2006, and signed by dr. Aboki zhawa, oon for the honourable minister of education is hereby attached and marked "annexure 11".

That our firm petitioned the efcc and icpc ref: Cari/efcc/07/07 and dated 22nd january, 2007, which receipt was acknowledged on the 25th january, 2007.

That our firm had written to the present honourable minister of education, ref: Cari/fme/001/07 and dated 1st august, 2007, on the subject of "primary school teachers' audit & biometric capture", as well as "state joint local government account & community accountability and transparency initiative." the acknowledged copy is dated 2nd august, 2007.

That the state houses of assemblies have enacted laws establishing state joint local government account allocation committees and ascribed functions, which are unknown to the 1999 constitution. The breakdown of first line charges on the state joint local government account laws are:
Teachers' salary;

provision for leave bonus;

provision of primary school teachers' pension;

provision of local governments' staff pension fund;

allocation to traditional councils;

maintenance of chieftaincy department;

allocation to training (lgsc);

bank charges/drafts/cot/vat etc;

joint venture projects, etc.

That in his ruling, niki tobi jsc, while delivering the lead judgment in the case brought by abia state and 2 others vs. Federal government and 33ors in the case of monitoring of revenue allocation to local government act 2005, the supreme court held that "while the legislature concerned in section 162(3), (5) & (7) is the national assembly, that involved in section 162(8) is the house of assembly of the state. Section 162(6) does not provide for any level of legislature."
the implication of these illegal state joint local government account laws is that over n2 trillion of local government allocation from the federation account allocated to states have been misappropriated and mismanaged contrary to section 162 (7). April 2008 allocation sheet to imo state attached and marked "annexure 12".

That contrary to section 7(1) of the 1999 constitution, which guarantees the system of local government councils by democratically elected local government chairmen and councilors, the state houses of assemblies have twice introduced caretaker committee at local government councils from may 2002 to april 2004, and may 2007 to october 2008, thereby usurping the legislative functions of the councils and making appropriations as well as conducting oversight functions over council caretaker committee chairmen contrary to the 1999 constitution.

That our clients do hereby demand from the federal and state governments a refund of over n3.5 trillion (n1.5 trillion federal and n2 trillion states) being funds illegally and unconstitutionally deducted from the federation account contrary to sections 162 and 313 of the 1999 constitution.

That our clients equally demand for its share of the internally generated revenue (igr) of their states as provided for in section 162(8) of the 1999 constitution after proper audit since the states have been in serial breach of provisions of allocation of revenue (federation account etc) act 1982, as amended by act no.106 of 1992, section 4(1).

That the efcc do investigate the continued existence, attendance and functioning of the federation accounts allocation committee (faac) in view of several supreme court pronouncements on its illegality. See ag., federation v. Ag., abia state & 350rs (p.671, paras, b-h) (2002) 6 nwlr and lead judgment delivered by niki tobi, jsc, on friday, 7th july, 2006, between a.g., abia state & 2 ors v. A.g., federation & 33 ors in the determination of the validity of some sections of the monitoring of revenue allocation to local governments act, 2005, at page 40.
And again, "what is more, the federation account allocation committee is not known in the constitution and therefore cannot play any constitutional or statutory role on the face of the clear provisions of section 162 of the constitution."

this position of the supreme court was equally commented upon in a keynote address presented by the honourable minister of state for finance, remi babalola, on 6th may, 2008, in a 3-day workshop organised by the senate committee on states and local government adminsitration.

The question our firm is now asking the efcc is why the illegality by the government that believes in the rule of law? The illegal and unconstitutional operations of the federation accounts allocation committee (faac) was part of the highpoint in our presentation to the house of representatives committee on finance, dated 11th june, 2008 titled, "nine years of mismanaging the federation account" through our media outfit "legislative watch". Annexure 13".

That the efcc should equally look into why the revenue mobilization allocation and fiscal commission (rmafc) have continued to sit in meetings every month with a body that is unknown to the constitution. What happens to allowances paid to faac members since april 2002, supreme court ruling?

The firm added that it was available to substantiate the claims it had made, even as the guardian learnt that an initial study of its petition is being done to verify the claims made therein.

A full investigation is expected to commence as soon as initial steps of verification are concluded, according to efcc insiders.

LINK http://www.guardiannewsngr.com/news/article02//indexn2_html?pdate=261008&ptitle=EFCC%20Investigates%20N3.3Tn%20Fraud

Oct 27, 2008, 04:54 PM
How Obasanjo wasted N24bn on boreholes -Minister

TWENTY-FOUR billion naira worth of borehole projects paid for by the Obasanjo administration between 2004 and 2006 were largely on paper, the Minister of Agriculture and Water Resources, Dr. Abba Sayyadi Ruma, has said.

Ruma in a testimony before the Senate Committee on Water Resources said the Federal Government had thus decided to refocus itself from the construction of boreholes to concentrate on broader policy frameworks that would deliver safer water to the populace.

Appearing before the Senate Committee on Water Resources, Ruma flanked by the Minister of State (Water Resources), Mr. Demola Seriki, said he inherited another N3 billion debt for borehole projects from the Obasanjo administration besides the N24 billion the administration paid out for boreholes allegedly constructed between 2004 and 2006.

The hearing was presided over by Senator Bassey Ewa-Henshaw, chairman of the Committee.

Alluding to fraud in the construction of boreholes in the past, Ruma said: "For instance, from 2004 to 2006, I think more than N24 billion was spent on boreholes.

As at the time I assumed duty as minister, there was a balance of N3 billion some of which have not been completed.

"Even the chairman of this Committee has examples of those ones that were said to have been done in his community but which either he could not see or he could not validate," Dr. Ruma said.

"From the statistics that we have, 65% of the quantum of money that has been spent by government in this area of intervention in the last five to six years, 65% of them are either not functioning or they cannot be seen or they cannot as a matter of fact be sufficiently proven to be functional," the minister said, adding:
"You could have documentation on the number of boreholes you have done but you cannot sufficiently validate them on the ground."

Upon that, Dr. Ruma said the government would

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/oct/27/319.html

Oct 28, 2008, 09:02 PM
Reps begin probe of N5tn allocation to N'Delta.

An Ad hoc committee was on Monday inaugurated by the House of Representatives to probe how about N5tn earmarked for the development of the Niger Delta was utilised.

The ceremony was, however, shunned by the governors in the Niger Delta states except Mr. Rotimi Amaechi (Rivers) and Theodore Orji (Abia), who sent representatives.

Oil companies in the region, except the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Agip and Total, which were also invited to the ceremony in Abuja did not send representatives.

.The House decided on the probe following its observation that the region had remained underdeveloped in spite of concerted government efforts and the implementation of the 13 per cent derivation principle

The absence of the governors and oil majors made the Deputy Speaker of the House, Alhaji Usman Nafada, who represented the Speaker, Mr. Dimeji Bankole, to say that it demonstrated their lack of commitment to the development of the area.

Nafada said, "We are talking about a place as important as the Niger Delta, this area accounts for over 80 per cent of our national revenue.

"The House of Representatives has taken the issue of deprivation in the area very seriously and we set up this committee to conduct this investigation because it is a national call to duty to find lasting solutions to the crisis in the area.

"The Niger Delta is one of the Seven-Point Agenda of the administration of President Umaru Yar'Adua; what the House is doing is to lend its support to the President's agenda.

"But, you can see that those who were invited did not only fail to honour the invitation of the committee, but even the NNPC sent a general manager, who at best knows only about matters relating to his department."

MORE HERE: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200810284474434

Oct 30, 2008, 02:07 PM
Confusion Trails Probe Of Airport's N23b Expenditure In A'Ibom

As Akwa Ibom State Government continues to unravel the exact amount that was paid for the airport project in which no significant work level has been realised, the enquiry is getting messier each day, as there are confusion over the expenditure of over N23 billion.

Part of the revelations of the ongoing exercise is that most of those expenditure were made without the necessary receipts, payment vouchers and documents to support transparency, probity and accountability.

Presided over by Justice Ime Umana, the panel whose proceedings is conducted in the full glare of the public and even broadcast has made some shocking revelations that would attract the attention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and other anti-graft agencies.

It was revealed that between March 2005 and June 30, 2008 about N23. 69 billion was spent on the airport project by both the previous and present administrations and most of the expenditure were not only shrouded in secrecy but were made without necessary documents.

Accountant of the Akwa Ibom International Airport project, Edward A. Akpabio, who said he became the project accountant in 2006, admitted to the panel that the airport has not received funding outside the state government, even though the state government had explained that the project is a public private partnership (PPP) arrangement, which required private funds.

Also, when the accountant-general of the state appeared before the panel, it was another case of confusion as he could not give satisfactory answers to justify government's expenditure and receipts could not be tendered.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/head/article08

Oct 31, 2008, 01:12 PM
EFCC Detains Ex-Minister, Aduku, For Re-arraignment

Former Minister of State for Health, Gabriel Aduku, has been detained by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) until his re-arraignment, an EFCC source disclosed on Thursday.

The source confirmed that he was arrested on Wednesday night in Abuja on the orders of President Umaru Yar'Adua and would be re-arraigned today.

Aduku's arrest is connected with the fresh charges the EFCC filed against him and two others on Wednesday at the Abuja High Court.

They face allegations of misappropriating N300 million unspent budget of the ministry, in an alleged collusion with former Health Minister, Adenike Grange, and Senate Health Committee Chairperson, Iyabo Obasanjo Bello.

The other two people to be recalled are the ministry's suspended Permanent Secretary, Simon Ogandi, and Finance Director, Hanafi Mohammed.

They were standing trial on 52 counts, but just as the court was set to begin the trial on Monday last week, EFCC counsel, Joseph Binang, withdrew the charges against Aduku, Ogandi and Mohammed on the grounds that the EFCC realised that the three were innocent.

But two days ago, the EFCC approached the court with a motion to recall Aduku, Ogandi and Mohammed.

EFCC Spokesman, Femi Babafemi, confirmed the arrest of Aduku and plans for his re-arraignment.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article02

Oct 31, 2008, 01:22 PM
FG, states can't account for N13.6 trillion - Revenue Commission

THE Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) has disclosed that N13.6 trillion excess revenue appropriated by the federal and state governments from 2004 till date does not have record of spending.

Excess revenue is the accruals above the targeted revenue on the sale of crude oil and collections from the Federal Inland Revenue Service and the Nigeria Customs Service.

Chairman of RMAFC. Mr. Hamman Tukur, made the revelation in Abuja while addressing participants at a session organised by the commission on "Budgeting System and Socio-Economic Development in Nigeria."

He said that the Federal Government introduced the concept of crude oil benchmarking in 2004 as one of its budgetary assumptions (although not part of appropriation law) on the crude oil side and revenue targets for the non-oil sector.

From 2004 till date, the RMAFC boss said these revenues did not seem to be reflected in the subsequent year budget proposals to the National Assembly at the federal level or state assemblies' budgets.

Mr. Tukur said the institutions (FGN and state governments) controlling these accounts did not seem to make returns, adding that the most worrying aspect was that nobody asked any questions about the accounts.

"Every now and then, some arbitrarily determined amounts are being withdrawn without any clear legal authority from excess crude account," he said.

He said the money was used illegally for funding of federal projects, payments of debts, funding petroleum subsidies, all of which were not known in law or due process as ruled by the Supreme Court.

"Beneficiaries at the federal and state government levels do not seem to submit to their various assemblies, supplementary budgets indicating these additional revenues-reciepts. The assemblies do not seem to complain either, despite the fact that in a democratic set up, expenditure of any amount must be appropriated by the legislative arm," the chairman said.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/31102008/news/news2.html

Nov 10, 2008, 08:09 PM
N16trn mismanaged under Obasanjo - Don

A professor of Political Science at the University of Ibadan, Prof. Bayo Okunade, has alleged that resources accruable to Nigeria during the eight-year administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo were mismanaged.

Okunade, who stated this in Ibadan on Thursday when he delivered an inaugural lecture on "Leadership: The Big Challenge," specifically accused the immediate past administration of squandering N16trn.

According to him, the Federal Government got N7.39trn while the states and local governments shared N5.74trn and N3.3trn respectively between May 1999 and May 2007.

He noted with regret, that despite the fact that the resources accruable to the nation during Obasanjo's period could solve the problem of infrastructure and poverty in the land, the huge amount was grossly mismanaged.

Okunade said, "The eight years before May 29, 2007 were marked by reckless squandering and privatisation of the nation's resources with increased poverty and grave infrastructural decay as the consequence.

"In the midst of this, the living condition gap was increasing with the diminishing middle class completely wiped out. The wage structure ridiculously tilted in favour of the political class.

"The lowest paid elected official was having better remuneration comparable to the highest non-political public servant. This is apart from abuse of perquisites of office and access to unearned incomes by way of corruption.

"One can say that the greatest performance (of the Obasanjo administration), apart from abuses in the area of the rule of law, was corruption. Contracts awarded and privatisation exercises carried out by the administration are currently being investigated."

The professor alleged that large scale fraud involving over N3.5trn was discovered in the oil and gas sector, sale of Abuja houses, communication and the power sector of the economy.

He also noted that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission claimed to have recovered about N600bn allegedly stolen by some individuals during the eight- year administration of Obasanjo.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200811102362821

Nov 10, 2008, 08:15 PM
INEC queries missing N50m in PDP accounts

The Independent National Electoral Commission has queried the failure of the Peoples Democratic Party leadership to account for the whereabouts of N50m purportedly transferred from the party's current account with a new generation bank to another deposit account with the same bank.

The money was allegedly transferred in three installments of N27.5m, N12.5m, and N10m.
INEC, which also noted that the PDP leadership failed to disclose the sources of donation to it as required by Section 95 of the Electoral Act 2006, faulted the party's accounting system.

"The basic accounting books and records maintained by the party were not properly kept. Many payment vouchers were not readily available in the files for reference and many of the payment vouchers that were available do not have relevant supporting documents," the commission said in a report by its auditors.

The report on the accounts of political parties for 2006 was obtained by our correspondent in Abuja on Sunday.

The report, which also indicted all the other 49 political parties for poor book keeping, added that "with a weak internal control procedure, the PDP was "exposed to malpractices."

Besides, INEC expressed reservations about the processes adopted by the PDP in the acquisition of its Wadata Plaza national secretariat in Abuja.

Before its sale, the complex was believed to have been owned by Alhaji Mohammed Waziri, a businessman and politician, who died in a plane crash in 2006.

The immediate past national leadership of the party acquired the expansive three-storey complex, located on Michael Okpara Street in the Wuse District of Abuja, for N700m in 2006.

While the actual cost of purchase of the building was N480m, PDP officials claimed they spent another N220m to process the deed of transfer of the property to the party.
Since it acquired the building, the PDP which was a tenant there for six years, had made the cost of the transaction a highly guarded secret.

Two years after acquiring the complex, the party is now trying to build a N10bn "befitting national secretariat" in Abuja. It has already directed the 27 governors elected on its platform to donate N50m each.

According to INEC, the PDP understated its balance sheet for 2006 by concealing the N700m it paid for the acquisition of the national secretariat.

"There is a potential significant understatement of the Balance Sheet by N700m being the cost of the national headquarters of the party in Abuja," the report stated.
It, therefore, recommended that "the acquisition process and document in respect of its (PDP) national headquarters should be reviewed and concluded appropriately."

On the accounting system of the political parties, INEC said that the Action Congress, for instance, lacked adequate internal control mechanism.

It added that the party "did not maintain assets register while its budget for the year 2006 was not prepared.

All the parties, except the All Nigerian Peoples Party, were said to have failed to maintain a fixed assets register, audit their accounts and keep proper records of their financial transactions.

The commission added that its auditors were unable to scrutinise the accounts of the National Democratic Party because its leadership did not cooperate with them.

INEC said funds would no longer be disbursed to the NDP until its books were properly checked by the auditors.

The Third Schedule of the 1999 Constitution empowers INEC to monitor the organisation and operation of parties, including their finances, and arrange for the annual examination and auditing of their funds and accounts.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art20081110315385

Dec 1, 2008, 04:19 AM
Reps To Probe N100b Defence Contracts

Lawmakers plan a probe of contracts worth N100 billion awarded in the past one year by the Ministry of Defence in connection with United Nations peace-keeping operations.

They include the purchase of 154 units of Cobra Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs), assault boats, and other ammunition.

The House of Representatives Defence Committee conducting the investigation will also examine the purchase of eight units of mobile workshops, one unit of field hospital, and the hijacking of the execution of capital projects by the ministry.

How the N3.8 billion received from the Petroleum Technology Development Authority (PTDF) was used would also be probed.

A source on the Committee, led by Oluwole Oke (PDP, Osun), said it has concluded plans to summon the ministry's Permanent Secretary, Haruna Sanusi, this week to answer questions raised in the petitions.

The complaints of the petitioners, some of whom are workers in the ministry, "range from alleged inflation of contract sums and non-compliance with due process, which led the ministry to overshoot its budget by N37 billion," the source said.

One petitioner claimed that Otokar of Turkey is the exclusive designer and manufacturer of the Cobra APCs, each valued at $273,575.

But, he alleged, the ministry paid $1,034,587 for each, which made Nigeria lose $117 million to Singapore Technologies, the middleman for the APCs.

National Defence College Commandant, Rear Admiral John Jonah, told the Committee last week that some of the school's capital projects are being executed by the ministry.

The projects include the building of the permanent site, whose unused N1 billion vote in the 2008 budget the Committee queried.

A member of the Defence Committee, Bassey Out, said on Sunday that the probe could begin this week.

The Committee has some details on the APCs but "we will have to go to Singapore Technologies to confirm as well as compare the price of same item from other suppliers," he added.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article02

Dec 5, 2008, 07:14 PM
N20b Fraud: EFCC can't find Mu'azu, ex-Bauchi governor

Former governor of Bauchi State, Adamu Mu'azu, has allegedly absconded from Nigeria as a result of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission's (EFCC) investigation into allegations of misappropriation of N20 billion against him.

A Daily Independent source said since the ex-governor was invited for questioning over the issue of the missing government funds, he left the country and has not been back.

According to the source, the EFCC had written a letter to Mu'azu in inviting him over for questioning but the ex-governor asked for a three-day extension of the date so that he could attend his daughter's graduation abroad after which he promised, he would honour the invitation.

"EFCC gave him the privilege, especially when he responded so promptly to the invitation and presented himself as some one who would not go back on his word," the source said, adding that they had a gentle man's agreement that he would show up immediately he returned.

"It has been over four months now, however, and the former governor is yet to return to the country," the source said.

Daily Independent reported in July that the former Bauchi State governor had been invited by the EFCC to answer questions on alleged fraud of over N20 billion against him.

EFCC's Head of Media and Publicity, Femi Bebefemi, had told newsmen in Abuja that the governor had been invited to appear before operatives of the commission on or before July 3 to be quizzed on his part in the allegation.

Part of the allegation against him was that Mu'azu had spent N800 million on almanacs for the state while he was governor.

He was also needed to explain his part in an inflation of expenditure on road projects in the state during his tenure as governor as well as the allegation of diversion of N9 billion to his personal use.

Former Accountant General of the state and Commissioner for Finance, who served under the ex-governor, had been arrested earlier in June to explain what they knew about the allegation and were released on bail after a week

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/dec/5/714.html

Dec 10, 2008, 07:50 AM
EFCC arrests national honours awardee over N700m fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) said it had arrested a national honour awardee, Dr. Albert Ikomi, over alleged N700 million fraud.

A statement by the commission's spokesperson, Mr. Femi Babafemi, stated that Ikomi was still under interrogation. The statement read, "A holder of Nigeria's national honour, Dr. Albert Ikomi, is now being interrogated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over advance fee fraud related matters. Ikomi, who claimed to have been decorated with the national honour of Member of the Order of Federal Republic (MFR) by former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo in 2004, is entangled in a housing scheme scam.

"The 1971 graduate of Ahmadu Bello University is alleged to have collected millions of naira from over 200 people after he placed an advert in the dailies in 2004 describing himself as the managing director of Model Satellite Town Development Company, purporting to be developing a massive estate, Atan Idiroko Mega City, as part of the proposed Lagos Mega City. He also claimed that he was executing the project on behalf of the Federal Government. He called on both investors and contractors interested to be part of the project to indicate their interest.

"With this contractors and investors started scrambling for the registration forms. Ikomi, an Itsekiri who is now 64 years old, capitalised on this interest and started reeling off conditions that must be met by those who had indicated interest. For the contractors, he told them to form themselves into cooperatives, contribute and deposit money as evidence of commitment. Besides, he also enjoined them to look for a building technology that would ensure the delivery of the houses in 60 days.

"To make the unsuspecting victims believe his cock and bull story, he started dropping the names of people in power such as Chief Obasanjo and Chief (Mrs.) Mobolaji Osomo, then Minister for Housing.

"The contractors and other victims were very happy to hear from Dr. Ikomi that they were to build over one million houses nationwide. With this, over 200 contractors and developers indicated their interest in the housing scheme, and they contributed money estimated at about N600 million.....

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/dec/9/609.html

Dec 10, 2008, 05:20 PM
So ?

We Nigerians know all this and I guess we are use to it, so let them keep it up till Nigerians are ready to stop it happening.

Dec 16, 2008, 04:06 AM
Bayelsa Speaker taken to EFCC, ICPC over N27bn scam

One-time acting Governor of Bayelsa State and Speaker of the state's House of Assembly, Wereinipre Seibarugu, has been taken to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over allegation of misappropriating over N27 billion when he held sway as the state's chief executive.

The petition which was copied to the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), and signed by Joe Ambakederemo, a Niger Delta environmental activist, also accused the Deputy Speaker, Neastor Binabo, of using his position to corruptly enrich himself.

The petitioner also cited other members of the House who include, Dudafa Waripawowei, now Commissioner for Local Government, Robert Enogha, Nadu Obuebite, Alfred Egba, Rubi Benjamin and Amalanyo Yousuo, for jointly and corruptly acquiring choice properties, including estates and hotels in Bayelsa and other cities of the country.

According to him, "it would be recalled that Speaker Seibarugu acted as the governor of Bayelsa State between April and May, where he corruptly misappropriated and embezzled several billions of naira of public funds.

"It is also a fact that the said members of the House of Assembly committed a lot of misappropriation and stealing of funds belonging to the people of Bayelsa State between the year 2006 to date.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/dec/15/715.html

Dec 16, 2008, 11:56 AM
Na today...anyway thank you for the updates for the latest corruption.

If someone like Ribadu could run to UK and seek for Asylum then maybe our president will run to France and take up marriage of convenience.

Dec 21, 2008, 08:26 AM
Reps uncover N40b allocation to completed projects

THE House of Representatives, unlike the Senate, is not in a hurry to pass the 2009 Budget proposal. For this position it finds justification on claims of desire to do a thorough job and avoid lapses and pitfalls that could cause delay in the long run.

But Senate President David Mark said yesterday that the upper legislative chamber ignored all the lapses and shortcomings in the 2009 Budget Bill and passed it to avoid a face-off with the Executive that could hamper the country's progress.

The House also disclosed that its committees had uncovered the sum of N40 billion allocated to some projects already completed in the 2008 budget.
Also, a member of the chamber, Sokonte Davies, representing Degema/Bonny federal constituency in Rivers State wept openly over the virement of N17.5 billion projects in the Niger Delta region.

Addressing a press conference in the National Assembly yesterday, the leadership of the House, represented by the Chief Whip, Emeka Ihedioha, and his deputy, Alhaji Aminu Tambuwal, said that the relevant committees of the chamber working on the 2009 budget had discovered some anomalies which must be corrected before it could be passed. He said that there was no way the President could assent to the budget in the present state since it does not contain details.

The principal officers, assisted by the chairman of the Committee on Finance, John Enoh, and his Rules and Business counterpart, Ita Enang, disclosed that some ministries and departments were yet to furnish the National Assembly with some details required to enable the lawmakers do a thorough job and would therefore not be stampeded into passing the budget.

MORE HERE: http://odili.net/news/source/2008/dec/19/26.html

Dec 21, 2008, 08:49 AM
felix..This one you keep updating us , We know now..abeg no put more petrol for the fire.

Let it be...or weytin you want ?

Jan 12, 2009, 09:07 AM
Reps write US Dept over $2.1m bribe in Customs

The House of Representatives has requested from the United States Department of Justice in Washington full details of information on the number of Nigerian Customs officials and individuals allegedly indicted or implicated in illegal payment of hundreds of millions of dollars, to obtain preferential treatment in the processing of documents. Sources closed to the leadership confirmed that the letter to the Justice Department was rooted through the US Ambassador to Nigeria.

Specifically, the House requested for Information on Nigeria Customs officials allegedly indicted or implicated in the Vetco Gray Companies FCPA Violations Case.
The letter reads in parts: ‘That we are aware that on 2nd July, 2007, the U.S Department of Justice (DOJ) commenced investigation into the allegation of illegal payments made to the Nigerian Customs officials through Panalpina World Transport Holding Ltd, a Swiss Shipping and Logistics management company.

"From 2002 to 2005, Vetco International subsidiaries allegedly made three Hundred and Seventy eight (378) corrupt payments totaling approximately $2.1 Million US Dollars to Nigeria Customs officials, in an attempt to obtain preferential treatment during the Customs process," the letter alleged.
Furthermore, the letter alleged that these payments were made for: (a) goods or equipments that were improperly or illegally imported in Nigeria, (b) goods whose documentation was not in order, (c) Goods delayed due to failure to post bonds with sufficient funds to cover duties and tariff, and (d) for sundry reasons."

It was equally alleged that the "company had top pay $2.6 Million USD as settlement to the DOJ. This fine is the largest ever imposed by the DOJ in FCPA enforcement action, and the second highest ever imposed to resolve FCPA charges"
As a result, the House solicited the cooperation of the US Department of Justice to assist the Committee on Customs to sanitize the system, with relevant information on the degree of involvement of the Nigerian officials, with a pledge to treat such information with utmost confidentiality.

The letter, it was gathered followed the September 11, 2008 resolved to mandate its committee on Customs and Excise to conduct a Public Hearing on the State of the Nigeria Customs Service and the Poor performance of its statutory duties and functions.

LINK: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2009/jan/12/national-12-01-2009-06.htm

Jan 12, 2009, 03:47 PM

All these news about corruption is just a tip on the iceberg. Can you imagine the scale of the ones that were not reported in the tabliod?

Jan 14, 2009, 06:08 PM
N27bn scam: Conduct Bureau writes Bayelsa Gov, Speaker

The Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) has written the Bayelsa State Governor, Timipre Sylva, and the Speaker, Wereinipre Seibarugu, to respond to multiple allegations of misappropriation of a total N27 billion, illegal bunkering, economic sabotage and money laundering leveled against them vide a petition.
A Niger Delta Environmental activist, Mr. Joseph Ambakederimo, had petitioned all major anti-corruption agencies in the country accusing both the governor and the speaker of financial malfeasance.

In separate letters addressed to the Governor and the Speaker respectively and dated December 23, 2008 with reference number CCB\HQ\I&M\007\911 and signed by Kolawole A.F (Mrs), the duo were directed to respond to the allegations against them urgently to enable the Bureau commence investigations.

In the letters entitled: "Re-corruption, embezzlement of public funds contravention of the Code of Conduct, failure to account for N27 billion, illegal bunkering, economic sabotage and money laundering by Wereinipre Seibarugu, Speaker Bayelsa State House of Assembly and other members of the House, which read;

"The Bureau is in receipt of the above titled petition against the Speaker and some other members of the State House of Assembly which feature serious allegations of corruption, embezzlement of public funds, contravention of code of conduct, illegal bunkering and economic sabotage."
"In the exercise of the powers conferred on the Bureau by the provisions of section 3[e] of the 3rd schedule part 1 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, I
am directed to forward a copy to you for your information and comments.

"The Bureau would appreciate an early response from you as it would assist in the investigation process," the letter concluded.

Specifically, Seibarugu who was the state's former Acting Governor of Bayelsa State and the Speaker of the State's House of Assembly, was dragged to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission [EFCC] over allegation of misappropriating over N27 billion during the period he held sway as the state's Chief Executive.

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/content/view/26226/42/

Jan 15, 2009, 09:49 AM

Civil servants steal N700bn annually - Bankole

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Dimeji Bankole, says the House has uncovered that civil servants collude to steal about N700 billion annually.
He also affirmed that debate on the report of the power probe instituted by the House last year on how monies voted for power projects by the last administration were squandered, would be televised live for seven days.

Bankole speaking at the 6th Annual Trust Dialogue organised by Media Trust Limited, publishers of Daily Trust, at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja said "we at the House of Representatives had a very revealing experience during the budget defence of last year.

"When we asked the executive what amount was the unspent funds for 2007, they gave us a paltry N21 billion," he said.

"But we insisted that it had to be more. From that N21 billion, the remitted unspent funds rose to N450 billion in just three weeks. Now, that part of unspent funds has become part of our budgetary process.

"Before our insistence, that kind of amount had always been lost. And nobody is asking questions where all these money have been going to.

"We have now discovered that each year, N700 billion is lost in the hands of civil servants. The money was never remitted to government coffers.

Politicians come and go, but civil servants remain. They even call some of them permanent secretaries. They are permanent! I am yet to hear that any permanent secretary has been put on trial for any financial misdeed.

"How come that these people have been going scot-free with these crimes?"he asked.

According to him, N700 billion is about 30% of Nigeria's annual budget that was never returned to the national treasury.

"That is why we said that in spite of all the names that some people would want to call us, we would not be rushed to pass the budget after all these findings.

"In this year's budget, the Presidency brought an appropriation proposal of N100 billion for roads construction in 2009.

But, we later discovered that, of that amount, some of the roads for which N30 billion was being sought have already been constructed last year. We want to do a thorough job on the budget and make sure that it is implemented to the benefit of all Nigerians," he said.

Power probe on course

On the power probe, he said the House had not jettisoned the report, but that a debate on the report has been delayed out of the exigencies of some pressing national demands on the House of Representatives.

"I want to confirm to you that the debate of the probe has just been delayed, not thrown away. We are going to debate the power probe live on TV for seven days for all Nigerians to see.

"We are not deterred by any personality or institutions involved. We are going to take very strong recommendations. But, we are not going to stop at that. We are going to ensure that such things never take place in this country anymore," he said.

He then stressed the need for the National Assembly to be financially independent of the executive and advocated same for the states to allow for proper separation of powers.

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/content/view/26343/41/

Jan 15, 2009, 11:31 AM
If my eyes no decieve me
and na true be things my ears dey hear
politicians and soldiers make e meeting
Our country dem wan repair
dem dey make like say
dem know o know
say na dem a spoil our country so
as dem dey dabaru am dey o
na so my people dey follow o o

Jan 15, 2009, 03:41 PM
EFCC tackles Ondo over N8bn contracts

Published: Thursday, 15 Jan 2009
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission claimed on Wednesday that it frustrated attempts by the Ondo State Government to spend N8bn from the state's treasury through the award of contracts.

It also said that it had arrested the General Manager of SCC Nigeria Limited, one of the companies allegedly involved in some contracts in the state.

The Head, Media and Publicity of the commission, Mr. Femi Babafemi, disclosed these to journalists in his office in Abuja.

He explained that Governor Olusegun Agagu's efforts to spend N8bn began shortly after the state Election Petitions Tribunal nullified his election.

He said, "Following petitions from the people of Ondo State that Agagu was planning to award contracts shortly after the Ondo State Election Tribunal annulled his election, our commission placed the state on surveillance.

"It was in a bid to carry out our investigation that the commission invited the General Manager of one of the companies handling the projects in contention.

"As I speak with you, Y. Levy is still in our office and may be granted administrative release later in the day."

Babafemi explained that the first move the EFCC foiled involved N2bn unsecured loans that Ondo, granted to some political appointees in the state.

The government was also alleged to have awarded a contract to SCC Nigeria Limited for Owena Water Transmission Project for about N14.4bn.

According to the commission, out of the total amount, the Ondo State Ministry of Works paid N3.8bn as mobilisation fees to the contractor.

Babafemi said that tips from the people, helped the commission to stop the issuance of the cheque, which was supposed to be paid by Zenith Bank Plc.

Meanwhile, the EFCC has invited the contractor handling the completion of the Owena Multipurpose Dam project in Ondo State.

It was gathered that an Israeli, Mr. Y. Levi, who is the General Manager of the SCC Construction Company handling the N14.4bn contract was invited to the Abuja office of the EFCC on Wednesday.
The project, which was initiated in 1971 by the Western Region, is a joint project between the Federal Government and the Ondo State government.

The project was inaugurated by former President Olusegun Obasanjo in April 2007 but the state government said that it was spending N14.4bn on the project in order to complete it and make water available to the people of the state.


Jan 15, 2009, 04:41 PM
All the investigations, investigated and investigators are just having a good time. Nothing will come out of the investigation, nobody will be investigated and no investigator will find anything. Another story will cover it and time will erode the scandal as usual.

Can you imagine if they have to investigate the fraud on this thread alone it will take 94 years…. We are wondering why we have armed robbers. We will because the leaders hardly provide anything. The police are poorly paid and it is easy for them to make extra bit of income by extorting money from people and renting their guns to armed robbers.

Jan 15, 2009, 04:47 PM
All the investigations, investigated and investigators are just having a good time. Nothing will come out of the investigation, nobody will be investigated and no investigator will find anything. Another story will cover it and time will erode the scandal as usual.

Can you imagine if they have to investigate the fraud on this thread alone it will take 94 years…. We are wondering why we have armed robbers. We will because the leaders hardly provide anything. The police are poorly paid and it is easy for them to make extra bit of income by extorting money from people and renting their guns to armed robbers.

I dont know why people are so blind to think things are getting better in Nigeria.

Its so painful things continue like this...

Jan 15, 2009, 04:55 PM
I dont know why people are so blind to think things are getting better in Nigeria.

Its so painful things continue like this...

People are naturally greedy and self centred. If someone is doing well, they say things are improving without looking or thinking of the poor masses. The other thing I have noticed is that when they have been in the system for too long, they don't know better because they are used to it.:sick::cry2::rant::confused1:(:mad:

Jan 15, 2009, 07:44 PM
The other thing I have noticed is that when they have been in the system for too long, they don't know better because they are used to it:(:mad:

Yes you are right here, "A one eyed man in the city of the blinds".:(

Jan 16, 2009, 10:45 AM
Please keep adding the articles to this thread. I am disappointed that nothing new is here by now.

Time will judge all these thieves and their children and children’s children will see and read all this news in the archives when NVS decides to publish a book on Nigerian Fraud in Nigeria. It will be an encyclopaedia of leaders, government officials civil servants and all other people caught and exposed.

The scale of the corruption is so large that, in many years time, it will be in the schools curriculum as a subject on its own or become a specialisation in criminology in Universities around the world.

Jan 17, 2009, 10:09 AM
2009 budget: Reps uncover additional N650bn

The House of Representatives yesterday said it has discovered an additional N650 billion revenue not captured by the Executive arm into the 2009 Budget proposal and enthused that oil revenue would not be as bleak as oil fundamentals are pointing at.
The House also dismissed claims that there are about three versions of the 2009 Budget already in circulation, arguing that since the budget is still at a proposal stage, the 2009 Budget is yet to be appropriated into law.

Speaking to reporters yesterday at a Press Conference the Chairman of Finance Committee of the House, Hon. John Enoh (PDP Obubra/Cross River), in his speech said: "In spite of the fact that oil revenue is still declining, it still occupies a prime place in our revenue projection.

From the documents we are able to get from the Department of Crude Oil Marketing, of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), the figure shows that the revenue from oil may have been understated by the Executive to the extend that it is possible to get even more than N300 billion additional total crude oil take this year."

"But I am not saying that the total N300 billion is going to come into the 2009 budget. You know we have a sharing formula where the Federal Government is going to take 48.5%, States, 26.72% Local Governments 20.60% and then special funds will take its own"", he pointed out.

According to him, though Nigeria is projected to produce 2.29 million barrels of crude oil per day, the actual share of government is about 970,000 barrels per day after oil producing firms have made their deductions, based on the various production sharing agreement they have entered with the Federal government. ( It seems to me that Nigeria exists for multinational oil companies!):confused1

"If you multiply this by $45 dollars, which is our benchmark, and by 365 days and by an exchange rate of N125 to a dollar, you are going to get a figure that is much higher than what was thought"", he said.

On unspent funds of 2008, he said, ""we are capturing about N350 billion of unspent funds in this year''s budget"", but did not elaborate further. That goes to say that about N650 additional revenue has been unearthed to fund this year''s budget.

It could be recalled that President Umaru Yar''Adua had on December, 02, 2008, proposed in the 2009 Appropriation Bill presented at a joint sitting of the National Assembl, that, ""total federally collected revenue is projected at N5.131trillion, which includes oil revenues of N2.9405trillion and non-oil revenues of N1.973trillion (as well as other non-Federation Account items such as grants and special levies amounting to N217.5billion).

The total Revenue for the Federal Government Budget is forecast at N1.778trillion including Independent Revenue of N306billion"".


Jan 17, 2009, 10:28 AM
Details of Graft Petition Against Jigawa Govt Emerge

More details have emerged on the ongoing probe of the Jigawa State Govern-ment by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over the award of various contracts totaling N5 billion in the state in the last fifteen months.

Investigations by THISDAY revealed that the petition that triggered the EFCC probe was filed by a retired police officer, identified as Comrade Mohammed Ringim, who claims to be the president of the Jigawa State Association for Nigerians with Mental Illness.The petition dated August 28, 2008 and made exclusively available to THISDAY, was targeted at two Jigawa ministries Ministry of Education, Science and Technology and Ministry of Water Resources and the Jigawa State Independent Electoral Commission (JSIEC).
Comrade Ringim questioned the award of contracts in these ministries and JSIEC from May 2007 to August 2008 totaling about N5 billion and requested for thorough investigation by the EFCC.
In the case of the Ministry of Education, Comrade Ringim alleged that the contracts for the rehabilitation of secondary schools and feeding of boarding students were poorly executed.
The Ministry of Water Resources was alleged to have inflated the cost of purchasing diesel for the operation of its water works.

In the case of JSIEC, Comrade Ringim alleged: JSIEC sold all chairmanship and councillorship positions to contestants during the last local government election for N250m each.The petitioner further alleged that the contracts were used by the Jigawa State Government to enrich members of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party in the state.
Apart from the EFCC, Comrade Ringims petition was also sent to some security agencies in the state.

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=133201

Jan 22, 2009, 10:45 AM
FCT Minister sued over N10.2bn

The new Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and former Governor of Kebbi State, Alhaji Adamu Aliero, is currently entangled in a lawsuit for allegedly stealing the sum of N10.2 billion from the coffers of Kebbi State Government.

Although the minister was summoned to appear before the court on Tuesday over the allegation, proceedings could not hold because Justice Adamu Bello, the presiding judge, was said to be indisposed.

But a fresh hearing date has been fixed for March 2.
Also summoned by the court were the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).
Justice Adamu Bello had before now issued an order directing the two anti-graft bodies to come and explain why they have failed in their statutory duties to investigate Aliero over the alleged fraud.

The order was issued following an ex-parte application by an indigene of the state, Alhaji Sani Dododo, for an Order of Mandamus compelling EFCC and ICPC to investigate the allegations.

Aliero's travails is the handiwork of Dododo, Alhaji Abubakar Kane and Alhaji Mungadi who authored and filed petitions before the EFCC and ICPC, alleging sundry corrupt practices against Aliero including the diversion of over N10.2 billion from the state's treasury while he was the governor.
Counsel to the applicant, Mr. Victor Ekim told the court that the two anti corruption agencies failed woefully in their duties by their failure to investigate three separate petitions on the alleged fraudulent activities of the ex-governor.

The three petitions were dated December 2006, February 2007 and August 2007.
According to him, "the petitions of 247 pages chronicled a comprehensive list of financial misappropriation, contract scam, inflation of contract sum and payments for non-existent or non-executed contracts in Kebbi.

"EFCC and ICPC have a duty under the various statutes establishing them to investigate, make public the results of such investigation and prosecute the former governor if found culpable.
"They have, however, refused, failed and neglected to carry out their duties in line with the various statutes establishing them despite several demands by the petitioners," Ekim told the court.
After listening to the submission of Ekim, Justice Bello, in his ruling granted leave to the applicant for the judicial review of the actions of the EFCC and ICPC.

LINK: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2009/jan/22/national-22-01-2009-07.htm

Jan 27, 2009, 07:10 PM
Money-for-motion allegation tears Reps apart

Allegations of money exchanging hands among members of the House of Representatives to shield the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) from being axed over alleged collusion with mobile phone providers to milk Nigeria of $1.7 billion in tax revenue is threatening to split the House.

The motion to open the can of worms at the communication regulatory agency in today's plenary is already pitching the chairman of the Committee on Communication, Hon Dave Salako with Hon Dino Melaye, chairman of Committee on Information and National Orientation, also a member of Communication Committee.

Dino had addressed a press conference on Monday raising alarm over overt and covert means of influencing him to drop a motion calling for the removal of the NCC Executive Vice Chairman, Ernest Ndukwe on accounts of his attaining retirement age for public servants, as well as causing the nation to lose $1.7 billions in tax from GSM operators, among other sundry allegations.
Said he: "I want to also use this opportunity to say that this weekend, I've received several phone calls, text messages, physical visitations with proofs, both audio and visual proofs to the fact that I should step down my motion.

MORE HERE: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2009/jan/27/national-27-01-2009-01.htm

Jan 30, 2009, 01:56 PM
N17bn Fraud: EFCC Arraigns 6 Ex-Bank Officials

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EF-CC) yesterday arraigned six former top officials of Bank PHB Plc at a Magistrate court in Abuja over alleged N17 billion fraud.

The officials, said to have been asked to resign from the bank late last year, include two executive directors and four other managers among them are Mrs. Mary Akpopone and Funmi Ademosu.

THISDAY gathered that the finance firm through which the alleged fraud was perpetrated had a standing credit facility with Bank PHB.
Going by the credit arrangement in which the two executive directors were directly involved, the finance company was granted unlimited access to cash upon presentation of cheques from blue chip companies.
Under the arrangement, Bank PHB does not have to wait for cheques to clear before advancing credit.
THISDAY gathered that the said finance firm having observed the loopholes in the credit arrangement opened fictitious company accounts with other banks and started issuing cheques to Bank PHB, which in turn advanced credit to the tune of N17 billion.

About N10 billion of the fund was said to have been recovered by Bank PHB, which lodged complaints to the EFCC.
A source in EFCC told THISDAY last night that the six suspects were arraigned in a court in Abuja yesterday but declined to give details.
However, hearing will resume in the case on February 19.
Meanwhile, the former bank officials are to remain in EFCC custody till that date.


Feb 4, 2009, 05:01 AM
EFCC Nabs Businessman over Alleged N17bn Fraud

Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrested an oil magnate, Alhaji Shehu Badamasi, who is the Chairman of Tanzila Petroleum Company, over alleged criminal conspiracy, fraud, and diversion of credit facility of about N17.7 billion.
The billionaire businessman was said to have taken the funds from a new generation bank between 2006 and 2008.
His arrest is coming barely a week after EFCC arraigned two former excutive directors and four senior managers of another new generation bank, over a fraud of about 17 billion.

THISDAY checks revealed that the EFCC Chairman, Mrs Farida Waziri, was reportedly alarmed by recent findings of investigations into activities of some banks.
Waziri had at a recent forum, promised to beam the commissions searchlight on the banking sector.
EFCC had already recovered N50 million from the businessman, while property worth over N3.5 billion were also said to have been recovered from him.
When contacted, EFCC's Head of Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Babafemi, confirmed the arrest but declined further comment.
Meanwhile, Waziri has promised to summon Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of banks over massive fraud in recent times.
A source at the commission said, "chairman of the commission was alarmed by findings of recent investigations into some banks and would summon CEOs of banks for a meeting over bad debt and fraud in the nation's banking sector."


Feb 9, 2009, 01:17 PM
EFCC Arrests Ladojas Wife

Security operatives attached to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday arrested wife of former Governor of Oyo State, Princess Tinuade Ladoja.
She was accused of allegedly swindling a Lagos-based micro finance firm of about N190, 350,000.00.

THISDAY Mrs learnt that Ladoja was whisked away on saturday at about 12.15p.m. in Lagos, and was detained at the EFCC office till yesterday morning, before she was flown to Abuja for interrogation.
An EFCC source in Lagos, told THISDAY that Mrs Ladoja was alleged to have secured a loan of N100million twice, at N50millon on each occassion since July 2008, through two companies, Murakon Investment Ltd and Superclean Services Ltd, allegedly owned by her.

A Memorandum of Understanding to pay an interest of N7, 200,000.00. and N5,400,000.00 per month on the two loans respectively, was said to have been entered into.

But trouble started some time in September last year, after Ladoja allegedly defaulted and issued dud cheques of N104, 5000,00. as part payment.
It was learnt that the micro-finance firm made frantic efforts without success, to make Ladoja consider offsetting the principal, even if she could not pay the accrued interest immediately.
EFCC Spokesman, Mr Femi Babafemi, who confirmed the arrest, said the matter was still being investigated.

"Yes, she was arrested on Saturday in Lagos and flown to Abuja today (yesterday) for questioning."
He said she was picked up for allegedly operating wonder bank, which she used to allegedly defraud unsuspecting members of the public the sum of about N100million, with the pretext that she was going to double the money in a week.
Babafemi said EFFC was more than ever poised to fight the menace of corruption and bring culprits to face the full wrath of the law, no matter the status.

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=135210

Feb 9, 2009, 01:26 PM
N50bn fraud: Keyamo can't prosecute Martins - COURT

ABUJA - An Abuja Chief Magistrate Court sitting in Wuse, Zone 2 has disqualified Lagos lawyer, Mr Festus Keyamo, from prosecuting the National Chairman of Police Equipment Foundation (PEF) and three others for forgery and fraud.
That was after the court voided the fiat issued him by the police to prosecute the accused persons.
According to the trial Chief Magistrate, Mr Sunday Ochimana, the "police did not follow due process in delegating its powers for prosecution in this case to the law firm of Festus Keyamo & co and as such, the police is not properly before this court."

Besides, he held that he would not allow Keyamo to prosecute the accused person because "he had adjudged them guilty of forgery and corruption even before the trial begins," contrary to the provisions of section 35 of the 1999 constitution.

He did not conclude his ruling on the validity of the police fiat issued on Keyamo without tonguelashing him for what he called his desperate attitude to jail the accused persons at all costs.

It would be recalled that the police, had, last year arraigned the Chairman of Police Equipment Foundation (PEF), Mr Kenny Martins, his Deputy, Alhaji Ibrahim Dumuje and two lawyers, Messrs Joni Icheka and Cosmos Okpara for conspiracy and forgery of Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC's) document with a view to defraud PEF.

They were granted bail for voluntarily submitting themselves to court for prosecution.
Chief Mike Ozekhome is representing both Kenny Martins and Dumuje in the case.

But soon after trial began in the matter, police was inconsistent, stalling proceedings in the matter.
One Assistant Superintendent of Police, Stanley Nwodo started the prosecution of the case before he stopped coming on the orders of the Police.

When Nwodo stopped coming, Festus Keyamo who was the counsel to Mr. Godson Ewulum that authored a petition on the strength of which the accused are all standing trial, came with a letter from the police that he had been given a fiat to prosecute the accused persons.

But Chief Ozekhome opposed the competence of Keyamo's chambers to represent the prosecution in the case even as counsel to the two accused lawyers also opposed it.

All the defence counsel teamed up to say that while police have powers to delegate its powers of prosecution, they said such issuance of fiat must be consented to by the Attorney-General of the Federation which was not the case in this matter.

Chief Ozekhome however introduced a new dimension to the argument by submitting that by virtue of the prejudice of the said Festus Keyamo & co against the accused person which he said is manifest from his letter to the police dated August 11, 2008, accepting nomination as a private prosecutor where he referred to the accused as "culprits", "they are incapable of serving strictly as prosecutors but persecutors".

But Keyamo asked the court to discountenance their argument, since the defence have agreed that police had powers to delegate its prosecutorial powers

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/content/view/28296/42/

Feb 9, 2009, 01:58 PM
EFCC to probe INEC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission may soon probe the activities of the Independent National Electoral Commission.

Highly-placed sources at the anti-graft agency and The Presidency disclosed this just as our correspondents learnt on Sunday that Yinka, the wife of a former Oyo State Governor, Alhaji Rashidi Ladoja, was arrested on Saturday evening by EFCC operatives over an alleged N100m fraud.

Our sources said that the decision to investigate INEC was reached after the interrogation of four of its officials over N121.8m donations to some associations, including the National Association of Nigerian Students and civil society groups.

One of the sources, who is a top official of the anti-graft agency, said interrogators were stunned when they discovered that most of the money said to have been released to some organisations did not reach them.

He claimed that even when money was released, only a fraction was actually given to those listed as beneficiaries.

For example, the source disclosed, that out of about N5.3m that was said to have been collected by a senior official of INEC on behalf of all civil society groups, only N900, 000 was actually released to them.

It was gathered that INEC had earlier agreed to disburse N100m to registered non-governmental civil society organisations "at a rate to be determined by the commission."

Many of the organisations which felt short-changed reportedly sent a petition to the EFCC complaining of malpractices.

Those interrogated are said to include the Director of Finance and Supply, Mrs. E.I Gamble; Director of Audit, Alhaji M.M Mustapha; Deputy Director (Cash), Mr. Israel Mohammed and the Chief Press Secretary to the commission's chairman, Mr. Andy Ezeani.

It was gathered that while the first two officers were interrogated on Wednesday, Ezeani was quizzed on Thursday.

All of them were said to have made useful statements to their interrogators and were thereafter released on bail on self-recognition.

Our source said, "What we found out after the interrogations of these three staff was astonishing.

"The whole place is rotten and I think we have to launch an all-scale probe into the activities of the commission.

"I wonder why the commission would give money out to an organisation and yet, some staff of the commission will collide with some people not to release the total sum.

"We have also found out that INEC might have used several means to siphon money out of its purse towards the end of last year in order to beat the order of the federal government which says that unspent funds must be returned to the federal purse."

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200902093342150

Feb 11, 2009, 07:57 AM
<table class="contentpaneopen"><tbody><tr><td class="contentheading" width="100%">Obasanjo, Atiku diverted $76m </td> <td class="buttonheading" align="right" width="100%">
(http://www.dailytrust.com/index2.php?option=com_content&do_pdf=1&id=4442) </td> <td class="buttonheading" align="right" width="100%">
(http://www.dailytrust.com/index2.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=4442&pop=1&page=0&Itemid=87) </td> <td class="buttonheading" align="right" width="100%">
(http://www.dailytrust.com/index2.php?option=com_content&task=emailform&id=4442&itemid=87) </td> </tr> </tbody></table> <table class="contentpaneopen"><tbody><tr> <td colspan="2" align="left" valign="top" width="70%"> Written by Abdul-Rahman Abubakar & Turaki A. Hassan </td> </tr> <tr> <td colspan="2" class="createdate" valign="top"> Wednesday, 11 February 2009

</td> </tr> <tr> <td colspan="2" valign="top">

Ewu Olusegun Obasanjo

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo and former Vice President Atiku Abubakar together diverted about $76 million (about N11.2 billion) from the Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA) Fund meant for provision of infrastructure in the aviation sector, a Senate panel declared yesterday.

Report of the Senate Committee on Aviation which investigated the utilization of N19.5 billion Aviation Intervention Fund, which was laid on the table yesterday, found that the former President authorised withdrawals amounting to $68.8 million from the fund while the former Vice President gave authorisation for the release of $6.9 million.

The committee said the BASA Fund was formerly under the control of the defunct Nigeria Airways which was "using the funds for its services and infrastructural development of the industry."
The fund however came under the control of the Presidency and the Federal Ministry of Finance for twelve years, the panel said. "Unfortunately, the fund became inaccessible to Aviation managers who needed same for development of the industry. Records show that the fund was occasionally used for purposes other than that for which it was statutorily meant to address," it said.

The Senate panel also said as at 2006, when the Federal government took a loan of N6.5 billion from a first generation bank for the Safe Tower Project with huge interest rate, "The BASA account had a credit balance of $31.89 Million (i.e. receipts of $118 million-withdrawals of $86.2 million) as at 2006 when the N6.5 billion Safe Tower Projects was proposed to be sourced as loan from Commercial Banks as part of the Aviation Intervention Fund of N19.5 billion."

The panel said apart from former President Obasanjo, who gave 24 approvals within six years and former Vice President Atiku, who gave 7 approvals within the same period, there were 4 other approvals by unidentified officials resulting into withdrawal of $3 million from the BASA account. The total withdrawals made by the Presidency under Obasanjo stood at $79 million.
Tabulated presentation of the Senate panel indicated that prior to 1999, the preceding military administrations of General Sani Abacha and General Abdulsalam Abu-bakar made no withdrawals from the BASA Fund in spite receipts from foreign airlines of $343,266 in 1997 and $1 million. On assumption of office in 1999, the Obasanjo administration received $18 million into the BASA Fund but withdrew $28 million in the same year for purposes other than improvement of the aviation sector, the committee said.

Apparently due to lack of funds, it said former Aviation Minister Professor Babalola Borishade had to turn to the bank to finance the Safe Tower Projects as according to the committee report, "Past and present ministers of aviation and finance testified that they could not access the fund because it was strictly under the control of the presidency."
Former Senate Committees on Aviation were said to have made fruitless efforts to get the Presidency to release the management and control of the funds to the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) in accordance with its 2006 Act.
However the panel indicted former Aviation Minister Professor Babalola Borishade and former Managing Director of National Aviation Management Agency (NAMA), Mr. Roland Iyayi for "defrauding the country" in the award of contracts for the N6.5 billion Safe Tower Project.

The Committee said the contract awarded to Avsatel Nigeria Limited at the cost of N6.5 billion was found to cost N1.5 billion only, saying "The N6.5 billion Safe Tower Project was awarded through selective tendering process that was not advertised and not competed for."
The committee also indicted former Aviation Minister Chief Femi-Fani Kayode for establishing irregularities in award of contracts in the aviation ministry and other agencies in the sector.
Senate however declined yesterday to debate the panel's recommendations due to ongoing court cases brought against the former ministers and other persons mentioned in the report by the EFCC. It said, "There are technicalities that we need to tackle before taking the recommendations."
Senate President David Mark said, "There are technical issues that we need to be properly guided before going into the recommendations." Senate then moved into closed session to consider the said technicalities.

Emerging from the close-door session, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Information and Media Senator Ayogu Eze (PDP, Enugu North) said, "You have seen that we have taken the report in the open today and nothing was held back, and the only thing that we had to reconsider was some of the recommendations in the Committee's report are likely to prejudice the outcome of the judicial process that has been instituted against some of the actors that are mentioned in person in the report and you know in our rule book, anything that is likely to affect the outcome of the judicial process one way or the other, we are mindful of it and we are enjoined by our rule to avoid it."

Justifying the earlier decision of Senate to adopt recommendations of its committee on FCT which investigated former minister Malam Nasir El-Rufai, Senator Eze said, "The difference is, these people we are talking about are being prosecuted by the agency of government for different offenses that has not been concluded.
The one in the past, especially with regard to the FCT report, was that the people involved wanted to stop the Senate from doing its job as enshrined in section 88 and 89 of constitution and we felt that the power given to us by the constitution is superior to the power that can be conferred by any letter from any lawyer on behalf of anybody."

He added, "That is the distinction that I need to make. Because the person in question, being looked for by agencies of government, has not yet been charged to court, but he went to court to stop us from concluding our work which had already reached an advanced stage."
Checks in the panel report show that its recommended for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Police "To take necessary steps to recover the sum of N5 billion being inflated cost of the Safe Tower Project from the former Minister of Aviation, Prof. Borishade, the former MD of NAMA, Captain Iyayi and the contractor, Avsatel Nigeria Ltd which executed the project and prosecute them accordingly. The Safe Tower Project, though well intended, was used to defraud the country." For Chief Fani-Kayode, the panel recommends that he "Should be barred from holding public office for five years. The weight of his undue interference in the management, recruitment and deployment of staff in FAAN led to over-bloating of the parastatals shortly after right sizing of staff and payment of benefits. This resulted in FAAN's current crippling salary bill of about N700 million a month."
The panel also said N1.5 billion was included in 2008 budget for same four towers in four other airports in the country adding that, "Due Process was not followed in the award of the contract. The fake due process certificate said to have been issued by the Bureau of Public Procurement should be investigated by EFCC."

It was also established by the committee that most of the companies that were given contracts of huge sums by the ministry had low share capital which violates the law. The panel gave instances with 20 companies that have a combined share capital of less than N21 million but were given combined contracts worth about N10 billion.
One of such companies, Almond Project Ltd was found to have been awarded N158 million engineering consultancy services at two airports that were described by the panel as ‘doubtful'. The committee said "All efforts to get one Mr. Gbenga Obadina, said to be the Managing Director of the company to appear and testify on alleged collection of money for services not rendered and forgery of signatures, failed."

The panel therefore recommended that "The EFCC should investigate the case of Almond Projects Ltd and its MD, Mr. Gbenga Obadina, who collected N158 million for doubtful consultancy services in Lagos and Port Harcourt Airports."
According to the committee, "The intervention fund was regarded by some officers as a Christmas turkey which was provided for some people to help themselves."
Reacting to the report, former vice president Atiku Abubakar said it would be mistaken for anybody to say the president or the vice president could have spent the fund as they liked.
Speaking through his media consultant, Malam Garba Shehu, Atiku said the fund was under the control of the supervising ministry.

He said any expenditure request was made through a memo and that all the president or his vice did was to give approval. Anybody who wants know the details of such expenditure, he added, is free to call for such memos.
However, former president Olusegun Obasanjo was not available for comment last night. One of his associates Mr. Ojekunle contacted on phone by Daily Trust said he was driving and requested that we call after five minutes, but when we did the phone rang without answer.

Feb 11, 2009, 10:53 AM
Senate panel asks Borisade, Iyayi to refund N5bn

*Bars Fani-Kayode from holding public office

ABUJA - THE Senate report on the utilisation of the N19.5 billion Aviation Intervention Fund has recommended that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Police take necessary action to recover the sum of N5 billion being alleged inflated cost of the Safe Tower Project from former Aviation Minister, Prof Babalola Borisade; former Managing-Director of NAMA, Capt Roland Iyayi and the contractor, Avsatel Nig Ltd which executed the project and prosecute them accordingly.

Also, the report recommended that former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode be barred from holding public office for five years.

The EFCC is also to investigate the source of a fake Due Process certificate said to have been issued by the Bureau of Public Procurement for the award of the N6.5 billion Tower Project.

However, the Senate stepped down further considerations on the report anchored by its Committee on Aviation at the point of the recommendations upon what sources cited as legal reasons.
The recommendations are to be subjected to legal review before Senate consideration, it was learnt.

MORE HERE http://www.vanguardngr.com/content/view/28513/41/

Feb 11, 2009, 10:58 AM
...Another N5bn fraud, Oga o

Feb 12, 2009, 03:30 AM
KBR pleads guilty in Nigerian bribery scheme

HOUSTON – A former Halliburton Co. subsidiary pleaded guilty Wednesday to bribing Nigerian officials to obtain contracts valued at more than $6 billion.

Kellogg, Brown & Root LLC pleaded guilty to violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act by authorizing and paying bribes from 1995 to 2004 for contracts to build liquefied natural gas facilities on Bonny Island, Nigeria.

"The successful prosecution of KBR, and its agreement to pay a more than $400 million fine, demonstrates that no one is above the law, and that the department is determined to seek penalties that are commensurate with, and will deter, this kind of serious criminal misconduct," said Acting Assistant Attorney General Rita M. Glavin with the Justice Department's criminal division.

Most of those fines, however, will be paid by Halliburton

In a statement, William P. Utt, KBR chairman, president and chief executive, said it was important to note that none of the allegations involved current KBR managers or employees.

"Today's settlements ... close both a regrettable and unfortunate chapter in KBR's rich and storied history," Utt said. "KBR in no way condones or tolerates illegal or unethical behavior." In a conference call later Wednesday, Utt said the penalties KBR will have to pay won't significantly impact company operations.

"People understand the context of how this happened, who was responsible for it," he said. "They clearly understand this is a new KBR. They understand we are very sincere about being an abiding citizen in the global community."

In court documents, KBR admitted it intended for more than $180 million given to two individuals to be used in part for bribes to Nigerian government officials.

MORE HERE: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090212/ap_on_bi_ge/kbr_bribery

Feb 13, 2009, 06:36 AM
Nigeria, Switzerland Move to Repatriate Abacha Loot

Nigeria has not foreclosed the issue of repatriation of the remainder of the funds looted under the late General Sani Abacha regime and stashed away in banks in Switzerland.
It was revealed yesterday that Nigeria and Switzerland are working towards the repatriation of other batches of the looted funds to the country.
This was disclosed when President Umaru Musa Yaradua received the Letters of Credence of the new Ambassador of Switzerland to Nigeria, Mr. Andreas Baum, at the State House, Abuja.

The immediate past President Olusegun Obasanjo administration had put the money stolen by Abacha from the till during his five years reign, from 1993 to 1998, at over $2 billion.
In 2005, the Swiss government ordered the transfer of $290 million of the money stolen by the late Abacha to Nigeria.
The Swiss authorities said it froze about $700 million of the loot after the general's death in 1998.
Yesterday, President Yaradua commended the Swiss government for the cooperation which made the repatriation of the first batch of the looted funds possible.
He also commended the commitment of Switzerland to the promotion of universal human rights and called for the enhancement of the current bilateral relationship with Switzerland.
In his remarks, Baum, who described Nigeria as a very active multilateral actor especially in the area of global peacekeeping, praised the current administrations commitment to the promotion of good governance through the institutionalization of the rule of law.

The Swiss ambassador noted that his country cooperated with Nigeria to return looted funds in order to send a clear message that Switzerland is no longer a refuge for stolen wealth.In May 2005, Obasanjo had also accused Switzerland of setting conditions for the repatriation of the fund.
But Swiss authorities had denied the charge, saying any delay was the result of carrying out monitoring requirements in cooperation with the World Bank, which is overseeing the process.

Also yesterday, President Yaradua called for a direct air link between Nigeria and Jamaica.
The direct link, he said, would open up and improved trade and cultural cooperation not only between the two countries but also other countries in the region.

The President assured the new Jamaican High Commissioner, Mr. Robert Miller, who came to present his Letters of Credence that the issues of Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA) and Joint Commission between Nigeria and Jamaica would be given urgent attention.
Miller, who is serving in Nigeria for the second time, described the country as the richest in potential in Africa with a great future.He thanked Nigeria for sending nurses to Jamaica under the Technical Aids Corps (TAC) programme while calling for expanded bilateral ties beyond the oil business under the auspices of the proposed BASA and the reactivated Joint Commission.

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=135551

Triple Palaver
Feb 13, 2009, 06:11 PM
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Thursday arrested the Managing Director of a stock broking firm, Transglobe Investment and Finance Company Limited, Mr. Joseph Okolie, and the General Manager, Mr. Sunny Ameh, over an alleged N3.2bn fraud.

Our correspondents gathered that the securities firm was alleged to be in the habit of selling its clients‘ shares and converting proceeds of private placements to personal use.

Sources close the EFCC said that the suspects were picked up by the operatives of the commission in Abuja . According to the sources, a sum of N3.2bn was given to the suspects by the Shell Staff Cooperative Society for the purchase of shares, but the money was allegedly diverted by the suspects.

When contacted, the Head, Media and Publicity of EFCC, Mr. Femi Babafemi, confirmed the arrest but said he could not make categorical statement on the matter.

According to him, "All I can say to you is that the suspects were arrested today by the EFCC operatives in Abuja."

It was, however, gathered that the suspects were still in the EFCC custody as at 9.00pm on Thursday.

According to ProshareNews, an online news portal, Transglobe has been under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission for an alleged illegal trading on shares of most of its clients including the misappropriation of funds belonging to the cooperative of Shell.

A letter dated February 4, 2009, with the reference, "SEC/M & I/INVGT/MISC277/09, which is quoted on ProshareNews, stated that SEC had invited the cooperative to an all- parties meeting at its head office on February 12, 2009.

The website also claimed that the firm owed huge sums to other clients while its former management in collaboration with some banks and fund managers made a lot of money through share manipulations and financial engineering, especially on their transactions related to Geofluids Nigeria Limited.

The Nigerian Stock Exchange had also suspended the company in 2008 over infractions against its clients, which allegedly included issuing of dud cheques, purchase of shares with clients funds in the company‘s names instead of the clients‘ names, Proshare reported, adding that the company also involved itself in the unbundling of shares purchased in the name of clients not credited to the Central Securities Clearing System account but sold through contract notes.

When the Spokesperson of SEC, Mr. Lanre Oloyi, was reached for comments on Thursday, he said that he was aware that the company had a case with the commission, but that he knew nothing about the arrests.

One of our correspondents spoke with a staff of the company at about 10pm on Thursday, but he was hostile and refused to volunteer information.

When the Principal Manager, Corporate Affairs, NSE, Mr. Shola Oni, was contacted at about 10pm , he said it was too late to find out the true situation of things from the appropriate department.


Feb 14, 2009, 12:20 AM
Imo State govt loses N25.7bn to council fraudsters

THE Imo State government has lost about N25.7 billion to alleged fraudsters in its 27 local councils between 1999 and 2007, Governor Ikedi Ohakim has disclosed.

Meanwhile, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Wednesday alerted the nation on a new trend in cyber scam called phishing.

Phishing involves defrauding bank account holders through illegal use of their vital account details obtained from unsuspecting bank customers by fraudsters who pose as legitimate bank employees in e-mails and text messages.

Speaking on Tuesday in Owerri while receiving the report of a panel set up to scrutinise the councils' activities within the period and the findings of the Imo State University, Owerri visitation panel, Ohakim said that between 1999 and 2007, the state government lost about N24 billion.

He added that N1.7 billion had been fleeced out of the councils' coffers from 2007 when he became governor to 2008.
Ohakim vowed to uncover how the money allegedly disappeared from the councils' accounts.

According to the governor, about N15 million disappears from the councils everyday while about 5,233 ghost workers are found on the councils' payroll.

Commending the panel for a job well done, Ohakim, however, condemned the alleged death threat made to two consultants earlier engaged by the state government to probe the councils' books.

His words: "Between 2007 and 2008, we had N1.7 billion as funds misappropriated. These were paid to ghost workers, expended on non-existent contracts or collected with phony vouchers by local council officials.

"Local councils became the most profitable venture where those who lost their jobs in Lagos go to or whose businesses collapsed rushed to in order to borrow money from the banks or sponsor their cronies".

Ohakim said the state government was planning to set up an electoral college where credible persons will be elected to pilot the affairs of the councils, adding that he would not relent in fighting ills in the state even at the risk of becoming unpopular

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/feb/13/13.html

Feb 14, 2009, 12:25 AM
Hmmm, I know folks will think I am just frustrated with the situation and so just venting but I am starting to feel that Lawrence Anini , and co could do better managing the resources of some states and Local governments in Nigeria if they were in charge when compared to the rare theiving characters in those positions today..:confused1

Feb 18, 2009, 10:05 PM
Senate summons ex-NHIS boss over N43m fraud

The Senate Committee on Public Accounts has summoned the former Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme, Muhammed Sambo, over the N43m withdrawn from the agency's account under alleged questionable circumstances.

Chairman of the committee, Senator Ahmed Lawan, read out an audit query from the account books of NHIS, and sought explanations from the current Executive Secretary.

He said the amount was withdrawn from the agency‘s account in November of 2004 without raising appropriate vouchers as required by the financial regulations.

He also said the purpose for the withdrawals was not stated, while the payments did not follow due process.

The NHIS Secretary, Dogo Muhammad, told the committee that he had queried the officer whose name was on the cheques and who he said, had since replied the query.

He noted that the approving officer, Sambo, was not within his "wavelength" and so he could not get him to account for the money.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art20090218113539

Feb 18, 2009, 10:11 PM
When kiringwo investigates another kiringwo, this is what you get:

N2.3bn car scandal: Reps may suspend five lawmakers

The House of Representatives may place five of its members believed to be the arrowhead of the opposition against the leadership of the legislature under the Speaker, Mr. Dimeji Bankole, on suspension.

Investigations by our correspondent on Tuesday showed that suspension would be a likely penalty for the lawmakers as the House begins the debate on the report of the probe of the N2.3bn car scandal today.

The Committee on Ethics and Privileges, which conducted the probe, turned in a ‘not guilty' verdict on the leadership on Thursday last week.

It cleared Bankole and other principal officers of any abuse of office in the contract for the purchase of 380 Peugeot 407 cars for House Committee duties following a resolution in December 2007.

The panel, however, found out that the five lawmakers played roles in the circulation of documents alleging that the leadership abused their offices in the award of the contract, a development it said was a deliberate attempt to misinform the public and create confusion.

A Lagos-based lawyer, Mr. Festus Keyamo, obtained documents detailing the car transaction and petitioned the House.

Under the rules of the House, members suspended during a legislative session may not be re-admitted into the House until the expiration of that session, depending on the gravity of the offence committed.

Order 10 Rule 9 specifically states that, "if two or more members acting jointly who have been suspended under this rule from the service of the House shall refuse to obey the directive of the Speaker to withdraw, when severally summoned under the direction, the Speaker shall call the attention of the House to the fact that recourse to force is necessary in order to compel obedience to his direction.

"When the members named by him as having refused to obey his direction have been removed from the House, they shall thereupon without any further question being put be suspended from the service of the House during the remainder of the session."

The current session of the House will expire in 2011.

The five lawmakers are Independence Ogunewe, Gbenga Oduwaiye, Kayode Amusan, Solomon Awhinawhi and Festus Adegoke.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art2009021810503896

Feb 26, 2009, 08:32 PM
Senate Summons Aviation Minister Over $61.65m Scam

There were indications on Wednesday that the Senate has summoned the Minister of Aviation, Babatunde Omotoba, to appear before it over an alleged fresh $61.65 million scam in the aviation sector.

The minister is expected to appear before the Senate Aviation Committee chaired by Anyim Ude today.

Also, Omotoba would brief the panel on the restructuring exercise going on in the sector.

It was gathered that Ude signed the letter summoning the minister to the Senate on Wednesday.

A copy of the summons indicated that the minister is expected to brief the Senate Committee on Aviation on the status of the $61.65 million meant for the aviation sector.

The money was said to be a loan granted Nigeria in 2006 by the World Bank.

Nigeria's contribution to the loan was about $46.65 million.

The second loan is $15 million and it was taken by the Federal Government and given to some of its agencies in the aviation sector to develop their facilities and boost operations.

In a document connected to the loan, a copy of which was obtained by Daily Independent, it was explained how the loans were secured as well as how much has been spent out of it so far.

"One component of the Aviation World Bank Project is the West and Central Africa Air Transport Safety and Security Project (WCAATSSP).

"This component which is also a credit has a total sum of $46.65 million which the government of Nigeria joined under the Phase II of the World Bank Regional Air Transport Programme on Security and Safety aspects.

"Nigeria requested to join the programme in November 2006 after the three fatal air incidents.Some specific projects were outlined for execution under this program for the four of the ministry's parastatals," the document stated.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/head/article01

Feb 26, 2009, 10:57 PM
Senators share N352m in two days

The dust raised by the aborted retreat of the Joint Constitution Review Committee (JCCR) of the National Assembly is yet to settle, as fresh facts emerged yesterday on how 88 members of the review committee shared over N352million as allowances for the two-day event in Minna , Niger State capital.

It would be recalled that the N1billion was voted by the National Assembly for the committee for last year alone.

Source alleged yesterday that the review panel may have exhausted its budget for last year on the retreat, even as there were speculations that the review exercise may have reached a dead end.

The committee also expended another N298 million on logistics, purchase of 18 refurbished Prado jeeps, and payment of allowance to some support personnel for the retreat.

Daily Champion gathered yesterday that some of the items already paid by the committee are yet to arrive the country .

The committee was said to have placed order for the purchase of some of the items late last year.

Source alleged that each of the committee members got the sum of N3 million as allowance for the two day event in Minna

Though the committee at the peak of the show down between the two chambers claimed that each member got the same amount for the retreat, but most members contacted declined to make public how much they got.

This was in addition to free hotel accommodation and feeding extended to them by the Niger State government for the two nights.

MORE HERE http://www.champion-newspapers.com/news/article2_240209.htm

Mar 3, 2009, 07:36 PM
Alleged N10.2bn fraud: Judge‘s absence stalls case against FCT minister

An alleged N10.2bn fraud case instituted against the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Senator Adamu Aliero, by an indigene of Kebbi State could not be heard on Monday by the Federal High Court, Abuja.

The absence of the Judge, Justice Adamu Bello, stalled the hearing of the case filed by Alhaji Sani Dododo over allegations of misappropriation against Aliero.

Monday‘s adjournment represented the third time in about three months that the judge failed to hear the case.

The previous adjournments had occurred owing to Bello‘s ill-health.

The reason for the latest adjournment is not known, especially since Bello attended to cases throughout last week.

The court has, however, been adjourned the case to April 28, 2009, for hearing. According to court officials, the new date was taken over the coming Easter break.

Before now, Aliero, the immediate past governor of Kebbi State, was ordered to appear before the court to answer to the allegation.

Counsel to the parties in the case expressed disappointment on learning it could not be heard again yesterday.

Members of the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties who came to the court under the leadership of Chief Willy Ezugwu to express solidarity with Dododo could not hide their disappointment.

Dododo had filed an ex-parte application for an order of Mandamus compelling EFCC and ICPC to investigate Aliero, who is now the Minister of FCT.

The court had summoned the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission after hearing the case to explain why they could not carry out their statutory duties investigating Aliero over the allegations.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art2009030343629

Mar 3, 2009, 07:46 PM
Lawmakers To Probe Obasanjo's N14b Rural Telophony contract

Federal lawmakers are to again beam searchlight on the multi-billion Naira contract award for rural telephony to Messrs R. T. Communications, an Israeli company by the National Information Communication and Education Programme (NICEP).

The contract was awarded during the last days of President Olusegun Obasanjo administration.

It was learnt that the probe to be conducted by the House Committee on Inter-governmental Affairs under the Chairmanship of Leo Ogor, is to ascertain the level of implementation of the project and to authenticate the allegation that 50 percent of the total contract sum was released upon signing of the contract in 2007.

A member of the committee, who does not want to be mentioned in the interest of the investigation, disclosed that the contract was scheduled

for completion last year, but is yet to attain 40 percent completion.

The source also disclosed that Messrs Milso Management Limited with no fixed contact address collected $3.5million about 50 percent of its consultancy fees without adequate supervision of the projects.
The contract was an Information Technology projects (ITP) meant to bridge the knowledge and information gap between the urban and rural areas.

It was designed to utilise a combination of satellite and Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) based technology to link up infrastructural disadvantaged rural areas to basic developmental information powered by solar energy.


Mar 4, 2009, 05:50 PM
Petroleum minister in fresh trouble - Queried over $5bn JVC fund

The Minister of Petroleum, Professor Lukman Rilwan, is in fresh trouble as the Senate on Tuesday indicted him over his failure to respond to the Senate invitations to explain issues relating to the $5 billion JVC, NNPC counterpart fund and other matters in his ministry.

The Senate, for the first time in history, also imposed Section 89 of the 1999 Constitution on the minister by imposing a N4,000 :Dfine on him for his refusal to respect the invitations of the upper chamber.

Besides, the Senate put the minister to task and asked him to explain how $5 billion being the 60 per cent Joint Venture Company's (JVC) counterpart funding paid by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) for 2008 was spent.

Prof. Lukman was also indicted for employing one Bello Gusau as a Director General for a non-existing and illegal Nigerian Petroleum Directorate since January, even when the bill seeking the establishment of the Directorate has not been passed into law at the National Assembly.

Appearing before the Senate Committee on Petroleum (Upstream), Prof. Rilwan could not satisfactorily explain the reason for his failure to appear before the committee despite several invitations extended to him and was subsequently fined N4,000.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/04032009/news/news5.html

Mar 4, 2009, 05:53 PM
EFCC raids NERC office over alleged fresh N2bn fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Tuesday raided the office of the National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) in Abuja over an alleged fresh N2 billion fraud.

A top official of the commission was reportedly arrested during the raid.

EFCC's spokesman, Mr. Femi Babafemi, confirmed the raid and the arrest, saying that the official had been assisting the anti-corruption agency with information on the alleged fresh scam.

Nigerian Tribune gathered that the fraud was allegedly committed through consultancy contracts, with almost all of them either full paid for upfront or more than 50 per cent paid without any traces that the consultants delivered on the contracts.

It was learnt that a few weeks before the allegation, the leadership of NERC had allegedly spent about N100 million to organise conferences in Lagos and Enugu on stress management.

Operatives of the EFCC were said to have moved into the commission's head office in Abuja on Tuesday following fresh facts supplied by insiders at the commission, revealing alleged reckless spending on the part of the suspended leadership, using consultancy.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/04032009/news/news7.html

Mar 14, 2009, 04:13 AM
EFCC: Judge orders Iwu's probe over N27.7bn funds

A Federal High Court in Abuja, on Thursday, granted the application of the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties, seeking the leave of the court to compel the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to investigate the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Maurice Iwu.

Justice Adamu Bello also directed the anti-graft agency to look into the CNPP's allegation that Iwu misappropriated about N27.7bn set aside for the conduct of the 2007 general elections.

Former Kaduna State Governor, Alhaji Balarabe Musa and other plaintiffs had filed the legal action against the EFCC, asking for probe of INEC funds under Iwu.

In his ruling over the CNPP's motion ex-parte. Justice Bello held that he was satisfied with the arguments of the plaintiffs in relation to the leave being sought to force the EFCC to look into the books of INEC.

He said, "The applicants applied for leave to apply for mandamus against the respondent. No appearance was announced for the respondent.

"Having listened to the arguments of the applicants and the reliefs they are seeking, I am convinced to grant them the leave of this court."

Justice Bello thereafter adjourned the case till March 26.

He also directed the plaintiffs to ensure that the respondent was served with court processes before the next adjourned date.

Besides Musa, other applicants are the CNPP Publicity Secretary, Mr. Osita Okechukwu, Secretary, Mr. William Ezugwu; Chairman of the Progressive Action Congress, Chief Charles Nwodo and the National Secretary of National Conscience Party, Malam Yinusa Tanko.

All the applicants were represented in court by a lawyer from Falana and Falana's Chambers, Mr. Sola Egbeyinka.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/mar/13/425.html

Mar 15, 2009, 08:04 AM
Seedy Details About The Man Who Bribed Nigeria

Contrary to the explanations from some government officials on the alleged $6 billion bribery for the contract on the Bonny island Joint Venture Project, involving top government executives and some officials of the Nigeria National Petroleum Commission (NNPC) and the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG), the text of the ruling by the United states District Court Southern District of Texas, which was made available to The Guardian, showed that the accused, Jefferet Tesler and Wojciech Chodan, actually established links through which the funds were disbursed in instalments.

The ruling established a conspiracy with Nigerian officials, which was facilitated through 'cultural meetings' at which the use of particular agents to pay bribes to officials of the Nigerian government in order to secure official support for the Joint Venture in obtaining and retaining contracts to build the Bonny Island Project.

Tesler, 60, was said to have confirmed to Chodan sometime in November 1994 that he had spoken with a senior official of the Nigerian Ministry of Petroleum and that his fee would be $60 million. He further informed him that "the first top-level executive branch official of the government of Nigeria would get $40 - 45 million of that fee," while other Nigerian government officials would get the remaining $15-20 million.

The report further proved there was a meeting between another gent, referred to as Stanley, and the first top-level Nigerian executive branch official before there was any written agreement between the joint venture and Tesler.

LINK: http://www.ngrguardiannews.com/news/article05//indexn2_html?pdate=150309&ptitle=Seedy%20Details%20About%20The%20Man%20Who%2 0Bribed%20Nigeria

Mar 17, 2009, 06:23 AM
Senators in Endless Search for Ezillo Silo

Members of the Senate Adhoc Committee on Food Crisis probing increase in prices of food stuff, on Saturday searched in vain for Ezillo Silo site in Port Harcourt, River State.

Ezillo Silo contract was awarded in 1990 to Messrs Persianas Nig. Ltd for 1.9 million pounds offshore and N12 million onshore with 25,000 metric tonnes storage capacity. The offshore and onshore components of the project had been paid in full to the contractor.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that members of the committee on a fact- finding tour of agriculture projects in the South-south zone, wandered the whole day in search of the silo.The committee could not locate the silo site or the contractor.

NAN learnt that when the contractor earlier appeared before the committee during its public hearing in Abuja, he alleged that the silo had been stolen.The committee also uncovered a N1.8 billion dam abandoned in Nkari, Akwa-Ibom.The dam, meant to supply irrigation water to the community was initially awarded for N667 million and later reviewed to N1.8 billion. Nkari dam was awarded in 2004 to Messes Hydroworks Ltd and Federal Government had so far paid N900 million mobilisation to the contractor.

The Consultant to the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources, Mr Udeme Akpan of Omodem Ltd, said he had written to the ministry for determination of the job.``The major problem is the contractor because he has failed to perform and we have communicated our observation to the ministry for further action,'' he said.

Briefing newsmen, Chairman of the committee, Sen. Idris Umar, said the committee would make appropriate recommendations to the Senate to ensure that the money for Ezillo Silo was recovered.Idris said
``Today, we arrived and we were taken round Port Harcourt but the Ezillo Silo is nowhere to be found.
``Monies have been taken and the silo site have been taken over by private buildings and the contractor is nowhere to be found
.``I can assure that necessary steps will be taken to recover the monies involved.
``We will not only recover the monies but steps will also be taking to ensure that the contractor is prosecuted for criminal offence.''On the abandoned dam, Idris said ``this is a clear manifestation that the contractor is unable to continue with the project and we will recommend for the determination of the dam.
``We are not satisfied with this performance and there is no indication that the contractor will ever improve.''

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=138244

Mar 22, 2009, 08:35 AM
A book on the LOOTED LOOT:

Sordid Tales Of How Nigeria Was Looted

THE modus operandi of the 'Abacha criminal organisation' and efforts by Nigeria to identify and retrieve funds looted by the late General Sani Abacha and associates are the focus of an upcoming book on Recovering Stolen Assets.

It is edited by Mark Pieth of the Basel Institute on Governance and published by Peter Lang, to be released later in the year.

A chapter of the book is written by Enrico Monfrini, the Federal Government lawyer in proceedings in 10 jurisdictions (countries) against members of the Abacha family and their associates.

It stated that the government used a combination of sending requests for mutual assistance and lodging criminal complaints for money laundering in jurisdictions "where assets of the Abacha criminal organisation had been identified or were suspected to be."

"This strategy resulted in the freezing of about $2 billion in 10 jurisdictions, of which to date, $1.2 billion has been recovered by Nigeria through mutual assistance, forfeiture or settlements," it said.

Countries identified as holding some of the looted funds include Switzerland, Luxembourg, United Kingdom, Liechtenstein and Jersey.

In addition, mutual assistance and/or criminal proceedings have been initiated in Austria, the Bahamas, Belgium, the Cayman Islands, France, Germany, Kenya and the United States.

The road to identifying and recovering some of the looted funds was paved by the Abdulsalami Abubakar regime, when on July 23, 1998, it set up a Special Investigation Panel (SIP) with the task of investigating the looting and corruption that took place during the Abacha government.

The panel, headed by Deputy Commissioner, Peter Gana of the Special Fraud Unit of the Nigeria Police, published a preliminary report in November 1998, which focused on the crimes for which evidence could be found in Nigeria, notably the systematic pillage of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

The report described the modus operandi of the looters thus:

General Sani Abacha directed Ismaila Gwarzo, his National Security Adviser, to present him with false funding requests for security operations or equipment, which he had the power to authorise.

Funds were mostly directly remitted in cash - $1,131 million and �413 million or in travellers' cheques $50 million and �3.5 million - by the Central Bank of Nigeria to Ismaila Gwarzo, who then had most of the funds taken to General Sani Abacha's house.

From there, they were taken by his oldest son, Mohammed Abacha, and laundered through Nigerian banks or by Nigerian or foreign businessmen to offshore accounts belonging to Mohammed Abacha, Abba Abacha, Abdulkadir Abacha and Abubakar Bagudu.

The book stated that Nigeria had long been plagued by corruption, but under General Abacha, corrupt practices became blatant and systematic.
"Funds were removed in cash from the Central Bank, sometimes by the truckload, :evil:and taken out of the country by members of the Abacha family and their associates.

"Inflated public contracts were also awarded to members of the Abacha family and/or their associates," it added.

Stressing that though many were aware at the time of the exceptional level of corruption of the Abacha regime, the full extent of the practice and the modus operandi of those crimes were only revealed to the general public after the end of the dictatorship and the investigations that followed.

The book stated that in a limited number of cases (36 transfers, totalling $386 million), the money was transferred directly from the Central Bank of Nigeria by wire to bank accounts abroad.

Such accounts were held by offshore companies, belonging either to members of the Abacha criminal organisation or to Nigerian or foreign businessmen, who then remitted the same sums to members of the organisation.

At least $1,491 million and �416 million had thus been found by the SIP to be embezzled by the Abacha criminal organisation.

The book also revealed that during the first stages of the SIP investigation, a large quantity of assets and cash was seized in Nigeria or returned to the Nigerian authorities. Other illegally acquired assets were also identified.

It said that Gen. Abubakar, in order to give a legal basis to the forfeiture of these assets, issued the Forfeiture of Assets, Etc, (certain Persons) Decree No. 53 of 16 May 1999.

This decree ordered the return to Nigeria of real property and movable assets, as well as cash, that had been acquired and held illegally by:

General Sani Abacha;

certain members of his government (notably Ismaila Gwarzo, National Security Adviser, Anthony A. Ani, Minister of Finance and Bashir Dalhatu, Minister of Power and Steel);

certain members of his family (notably Mohammed Abacha and Abdulkadir Abacha); and

other third parties (Abubakar Bagudu and Abdulazeez Arisekola Alao).

"More than $800 million was thus returned to Nigeria as a result of this measure with Mohammed Abacha, Abba Abacha and Abubakar Bagudu returning $635 million and �75 million," it said.
Interestingly, according to the book, no evidence whatsoever of corruption could be found in Nigeria, although it was well known that Gen. Abacha, "in exchange for granting his approval for contracts of over $50,000, was taking bribes, representing up to 40 per cent of the contract price."

"This proved to be due to the fact that all corrupt payments were made from offshore bank accounts of the contractors to offshore bank accounts of members of the Abacha criminal organisation," it said.

However, on the basis of evidence gathered in Nigeria, 115 counts of charges of receiving stolen property (Article 317 Penal Code Law) were filed at the High Court, Abuja, against Mohammed Abacha and Abubakar Bagudu.

Additional charges of 68 counts were filed at the High Court against Mohammed Abacha and Abba Abacha, the two oldest surviving sons of Gen. Abacha.

Though these criminal proceedings are currently stalled by objections and appeals lodged by Mohammed Abacha, the Abuja Court of Appeal found in 2005 that Mohammed Abacha could not claim any immunity from prosecution based on Decree No. 53 of 1999.

He could also not claim 'sovereign immunity' that his father allegedly enjoyed. An appeal is still pending before the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

The book regards the Abacha case a "success story" not only because of the amounts recovered so far ($2 billion, with $1.2 billion internationally), "but because the recoveries were obtained through the mutual co-operation of prosecutors, examining magistrates and police in several jurisdictions."

It credited this success to the extraordinary political will by successive Nigerian governments, to pursue the investigations and recovery efforts, "despite efforts to destabilise by members of the Abacha criminal organisation, who were still rich and powerful."

It also commends the efforts of co-operating authorities, to assist Nigeria to recover the proceeds of crimes committed at its expense.

Book noted that by so doing, those authorities "deemed that it was in the public interest to investigate and prosecute the acts of fraud, money laundering and participation in a criminal organisation that had taken place within their respective jurisdictions on a very large scale."

LINK: http://www.ngrguardiannews.com/news/article01//indexn2_html?pdate=220309&ptitle=Sordid%20Tales%20Of%20How%20Nigeria%20Was%2 0Looted

Mar 23, 2009, 08:56 AM
Minister probes N1.5bn allocation for generator fuel

Chief Ojo Maduekwe, the Minister of Foreign Afairs, has ordered a probe into the N1.5 billion allocated for the purchase of generator fuel in some diplomatic missions abroad.

The allocation is contained in this year's Federal Government budget as approved by the National Assembly. "I have directed an investigation into that. If it is true that money has been budgeted for missions in countries that do not have power failure at all, I do not want to preempt the outcome,'' Maduekwe told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.

The minister pointed out that the probe became necessary not just because of the amount involved but also as a result of its ‘strange' capture in the budget.

According to the breakdown of the ministry's budget for 2009, the highest allocation of N6 million each was set aside for the missions in Jakarta and Pretoria.

Others are Berlin, N5.5 million; London, N4.1 million; Washington, N2.8 million and Atlanta, N2 million. Meanwhile, a retired diplomat, who sought anonymity, told NAN that problems such as this arose from the flawed budgeting process.

According to him, funds are often voted for projects and programmes that are either not necessary or do not reflect the actual needs and priorities of government Ministries, Departments and Agencies.

He noted that in some missions' host countries where primary and secondary education was free for diplomats and their children, government still voted huge sums as school fees at the expense of critical needs of the missions such as payment for electricity, gas and telephone.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/22032009/news/news10.html

Mar 23, 2009, 09:32 AM
nna, nwannam, felix, jisike...but dis your thread get as ibe o...lol!, anywaz, na you go tire!

Mar 23, 2009, 09:51 AM
You really have to be strong. Even the writers and commentators on fraud against the Nigerian people are physically and mentally tired of writing and talking about corruption in Nigeria. The ink in the pens are running out and the cartridges are also running low yet, there are no signs of bad news stopping. These are the ones we hear about. If everything were to be recorded, the world press will be overwhelmed.

What is the solution.

Mar 23, 2009, 10:30 AM
What is the solution.

....chop off chanchaga's head and render his damned brain redundant...:p:clap:

Mar 27, 2009, 07:08 AM
N3bn Fraud: EFCC arrests 2 Customs comptrollers

THE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Thursday arrested two comptrollers of Customs, Hanatu Suleiman and Johnson Olufemi-Taylor, over alleged complicity in a N3 billion customs duties scam, involving controversial businessmen, the Vaswani brothers.

They were arrested yesterday afternoon in Lagos and were moved to Abuja, where they are being interrogated and detained. Suleiman and Olufemi-Taylor are in charge of the Apapa Wharf.

Commission's spokesperson, Mr. Femi Babafemi, confirmed the arrest.
EFCC's chairman, Mrs. Farida Waziri, while declaring the Vaswani brothers wanted last Friday, vowed that all those connected with the alleged fraud would be dealt with.

She fingered top Customs officers in the saga, while revealing that about five persons had been arrested over the matter. The arrest of the comptrollers yesterday, according to a source, was the commencement of what could turn out to be a full-blown probe of the agency.

Farida had accused the Vaswani brothers of defrauding the Nigerian government to the tune of N3 billion, adding that public officers, particularly, customs officers, who aided them in perpetrating the alleged economic sabotage, would face the music.

According to her, "the actual brothers are based in Europe. They are two. They are out to destroy the economy of this country. They believe they can have their way because it is believed that Nigeria is a corrupt country.

"Whosoever is involved would be dealt with decisively. The Vaswani brothers are wanted by the commission. We have about five others in custody in connection with this. We got to know through intelligence gathering."

She added that "The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is investigating Stallion Group of Companies and the Vaswani brothers, who are the owners of the company. The Vaswani brothers have been engaging in activities that are inimical to the economy.

"Recently, they defrauded the Federal Government of Nigeria of the sum of N3billion through their business outfits. The fraud was through underpayment of customs duties while importing rice into the country.

The company, the Stallion Group, has been doing business in Nigeria and the scope of their business involves commodities and sales of automobile. In 2003 the commission investigated the company and this led to the deportation of the Vaswani brothers by the Federal Government.

"However, their companies were allowed to carry on business in Nigeria. In 2007, they were allowed back into Nigeria after several appeals. However, recent investigations show clearly that they have continuously and consistently perfected the art of underpayment of customs duties due to the Federal Government

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/27032009/news/news1.html

Mar 27, 2009, 08:21 AM
Ex-Generals fingered as crude theft worsens * 680,000 barrels stolen per day

LAGOS - THERE are indications that crude oil theft from the upstream sector of the oil industry in the country has worsened in the last six months, accounting for about 680,000 barrels per day of about 1.3 million barrels per day (bpd) currently shut in.
Vanguard exclusively gathered from security operatives that some retired generals have been fingered in the escalating theft of crude oil and the perpetuation of the air of insecurity in the Niger Delta.

Officials of oil majors - Shell, Mobil, Chevron, Total and Agip - which operate joint ventures with the NNPC claim that a significant proportion of the shut-in volume is as a result of technical challenges, but they declined to state the exact volume affected.

However, when contacted, an official of the National Petroleum Investment, Management Services (NAPIMS), a subsidiary of the NNPC who did not want his name in print confirmed that shut-in volume is about 1.3 million bpd. Sixty per cent of this is as a result of militancy, while the 40 per cent balance is as a result of technical challenges.

The NAPIMS official disclosed that in the last one month output volume has been oscillating between 1.6 million bpd and 2.0 mbpd, short of the 2.2 mbpd production volume upon which the 2009 budget was predicated.

He admitted the incidence of crude oil theft and reporting by the multinationals has increased in the last six months, adding that it was a security issue which the authorities were trying to tackle.

Investigations further revealed that at the Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company (SNEPCo) operated Sea Eagle FPSO, illegal bunkering activities has continued unabated, even though operations were suspended about 3 years ago.

In the last quarter of 2008, irregular visits of barges were observed transiting the field and inspection conducted confirmed illegal bunkering activities on 19 wells and by end of January, 2009 nocturnal visits by barges escorted by speed boats had increased to 5 days a week.

Vanguard gathered that during the period, the security agencies were informed accordingly, but there was no response in January, up till the second week in February, when a feeble attempt at pursuit of the thieves was initiated.

In an effort to protect the facilities around the Sea Eagle, Vanguard gathered that Shell personnel mobilised and visited the facility to remove tubing and valves installed by the thieves to open the sub-surface safety valve and master control valve.

However, the oil thieves, who wear balaclava suits resurfaced with machine guns mounted on top of four fast-moving boats and fired busts of gun shots to warn off the Shell personnel from their criminal activities.

Investigations revealed that in the vicinity of Warri, Port Harcourt and Yenagoa, crude oil thieves enjoy a field day, taking crude oil unhindered from well heads of different oil and gas exploration and production companies, with the security agencies unable to check their excesses.

Although indications are that government is doing all within its power to check the incidence of crude oil theft, a security operative working in the delta disclosed on condition of anonymity that government lacks the political will to check the situation.

"Look here, we have arrested some of these vessels in the past, only to be told to release them immediately by some big shots in the military. In fact now, they do not even wait for us to arrest any vessel. We are warned in advance to expect these vessels and not to interfere with them.

"Some of those we had accosted in the past had mentioned names of notable retired military Generals who you least expect to be involved in all of this and when we called to verify, it turned out to be true," the security operative disclosed.
When contacted, a notable militant leader in the Port Harcourt area disclosed said he was surprised Vanguard was asking after the involvement of retired military officers, adding that he took it for granted this was common knowledge.
"Government aids these people to remove crude oil for sale. It might also surprise you to note that even some civilian big wigs get white product allocations for sale. There is even a serving general who has three cargo loads of crude oil watering in Togo triangle (a place in the Republic of Togo) and I can trap them for you posing as a buyer. But these people are very dangerous and desperate. I advise you to tread with caution," he volunteered.
Because of the nation's dwindling production capacity, OPEC at its meeting, penultimate week, pegged Nigeria's production output at 1.69mbpd.

Repeated efforts to reach the spokesman of the Joint Task Force, Col Sagir Musa, yesterday proved abortive.

Link http://www.vanguardngr.com/content/view/32093/41/

Mar 29, 2009, 03:44 PM
NASS's N60b Constituency Loot

Yes! It is true. Our lawmakers at the National Assembly are going to share a whopping N60 billion. To be shared at N10 billion per zone, each of them would get nothing less than N250 million. Imagine the picture in the zones by now.

Already, we hear that the North West lawmakers are bitter about sharing their own windfall among seven states, while their South East counterparts with five states grin from ear to ear. In fact, those from the South West had reportedly allowed their own bickering to seep out in the open. Notwithstanding that each of them is heading home with no less than N270 million, their senators were said to have wrangled so loudly about the sharing formula to the apparent discomfiture of their colleagues that they decided to do something immediately before the matter got out of control. A hush was reportedly thrown into the whole affair when the Senate decided to dissolve into executive session last Wednesday, to thrash out the matter. Talk about greed. N270 million and still asking for more!

I know the NASS members have a ready answer for Nigerians, who, not understanding our own brand of democracy, may want to raise eyebrows - the money is not for the private use, but for 'constituency projects'. Such noble intention! Only that the knowing public have wised up to this bogus reasoning. We have "enjoyed" this democracy for more than 10 years now and know the number of these projects in our towns and villages. Perhaps, we also know it means beefing up missiles for the armies of thugs they rely on for their "elections" and that the pockets of their goons called campaign coordinators would definitely swell.

Meanwhile, laws for the good governance of the country, their primary responsibility would continue to be elusive, as the recent bickering over the composition of the Constitution Reform Committee (CRC), which has been permanently buried.

To those yearning for more states, prepare your minds. There won't be any. How would the South East lawmakers ask for additional states in the light of the larger chunk of the booty they now get from the current configuration? Or would their counterparts in the North West desire to increase their sorrows by asking for another state? Such is our dilemma. Weep not my countrymen. Our lawmakers must have their security (constituency) votes. After all, the executives enjoy theirs. Without question!

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/colu/sspe/article01

Mar 30, 2009, 05:34 PM
Reps, AG query use of N199bn ecological funds

The House of Representatives Public Accounts Committee and the Auditor-General of the Federation are battling with the Ecological Funds Office to account for how it spent N146.594bn since 2002.

Accruals to the EFO as at March 16, 2009 is N199.3bn and it had remained a guarded secret since the fund was established, despite spirited efforts of the last two National Assemblies to scrutinise it.

The accruals , derived from 1.46 per cent of the Federation Account, is domiciled in the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, but managed by the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation.

Bids to subject the accruals to scrutiny had given rise to three letters from the House Committee between February and March 16, amid growing national outcry that the Federal Government was not doing enough to solve erosion and desertification problems, especially in the South-East and the North.

A financial statement on its operations forwarded to the committee showed a rash of withdrawals, grants and interventions outside areas for which the EFO was set up.

Ecological Funds, like the disbanded Petroleum Technology Development Funds, has served as slush funds for governors and the ruling Peoples Democratic Party.

This came to the limelight when former governor of Plateau State, Chief Joshua Dariye, disclosed in the heat of his trial by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission that he doled out N90m from the state’ share of the funds to the South-West PDP for the 2003 elections.

According to the EFO records, N250m was released to Plateau State in August 2004, to “attend to urgent emergency issues as approved by Mr. President” as a bridging loan.

It claimed that it gave N200m as loan to the Presidential Research and Communication Unit on September 11, 2002.

While Edo State, which it gave N500m facility on September 17, 2002, repaid the last tranch of N83.33m on March 17, 2003, there is no evidence of the repayment of the N200m ‘loan’ by the Presidential Research unit.

Analysis of the EFO accounts ledger evinced 303 financial entries, out of which 153 were receipts.

Also, the record showed that managers of the funds gave N200m to Ogun State Government on April 22, 2006 for memorial monument for the victims of the Bellview plane crash.

Other transactions include an overpayment of N1bn in respect of N4bn project for the provision of engineering infrastructure for Kubwa/Karshi satellite towns in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

The releases are as follows: N2bn to FCDA on March 23, 2007; N1bn to FCDA on August 18, 2007; and N2bn on December 12, 2007.

The last two payments had the same entries except difference in figures.

The record stated that N4bn for the third and final payments was “released to FCDA for the provision of engineering infrastructure to Kubwa/Karshi satellite towns.”

A total of N750m was said to have been “released for the development of Abuja downtown mall” but the recipient was not stated.

The record also showed that N7.5bn was granted as a loan to the Nigerian Air Force through the Ministry of Defence on March 23, 2007 for some unspecified projects.

The EFO also spent N10m on abattoir in Bida , Niger State, on April 3, 2003 and gave N50m to the Federal Ministry of Agriculture for tree planting in Abuja in July 2003.

MORE HERE http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200903304224178

Apr 2, 2009, 11:15 AM
NNPC spent N600bn on fake contracts, subsidy – Presidency

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation is in financial dire straits and may be indebted to the tune of over N600bn, a top Presidency official disclosed on Wednesday.

The official, who spoke with one of our correspondents in Abuja on the condition of anonymity, said NNPC incurred the debts mostly through shady payments for subsidies on petroleum products and the repair of its vandalised pipelines.

According to him, N400bn out of the amount was spent on petroleum subsidy and the balance of N200bn either siphoned through spurious contracts, theft or for the payment of vandalised pipelines.

He said, "It is unfortunate that NNPC is being run like a charity organisation. There is nowhere in the world where money is spent on subsidy in such a way. Infact, there is no accountability there.

"People just share money and pay for services not rendered. As I speak with you now, the corporation is still paying for vandalised pipelines even though they don't have products transported through such pipelines. It is very sad that people can just spend public funds the way they like.

"There is nowhere in the world where you produce a product for N100 and sell it for N60 and you expect to remain in business.

"In not too distant a time, your business will fold up and that is exactly what has been happening in the NNPC with the subsidy issue.

"In fact, NNPC is bankrupt."

Continuing, the source stressed that the corporation would have folded up a long time ago if it had not been funded with tax payers' money.

He said, "If the NNPC were a private company, it would have folded up years ago, but what keeps it going is the fact that every year they wait for government allocation and share it and fold their hands and wait for the following year's allocation. Things are not done that way, it has to stop."

The source, however, assured that any official of the Petroleum Product Pricing Regulatory Agency indicted in the planned audit of the agency would be prosecuted.

But speaking on the telephone with one of our correspondents, the Group General Manager, Public Affairs, NNPC, Dr. Levi Ajuonuma, disputed the claims.

He said, "I doubt if that claims were from the Presidency. I'm sure they were talking about Oil and Gas Reforms and the need for the NNPC to be run along profit-oriented lines.

"They were only repeating all those that we have been talking about – the need for Oil and Gas Reforms implementation. But how does that translate to NNPC being broke?"

Ajuonuma agreed that "the "NNPC has been carrying the burden of subsidy and it has been cumbersome. So, there is need to ensure that our activities are profitable.

"If you are an importer and Nigeria has placed an order for fuel and you read in the newspaper that the company importing the product is broke, would you go ahead and ship the products?" he asked rhetorically.

He added that those who make such sweeping statements about the NNPC did not "understand their implications."

The Minister of State for Petroleum, Mr. Odein Ajumogobia, had told one of our correspondents in 2008 that the NNPC was only surviving because government had continued to fund its operations.

"The NNPC is broke because it buys crude at market price and sells refined products at a huge discount. How long does it take before you get to zero? It is a matter of time," he had said.

"But because the corporation is funded through a budgetary process; every year it gets something like a subvention and nobody is counting. A private company would have folded up a long time ago," the minister added.

Meanwhile, the Federal University of Technology, Minna chapter, of the Academic Staff Union of Nigeria Universities has accused the Federal Government of underestimating the revenue from sales of crude oil.

It said going by the benchmark of $40 per barrel of crude oil in the 2009 budget, the government stood to realise $4tn by selling 1.6 million barrels per day throughout the year.

A statement by the ASUU FUT chairman, Dr. Babatope Alabadan, reads, "While noting the constraints listed by the President (Umaru Yar'Adua) while signing the 2009 budget viz -a- viz the Niger Delta and the global economic crises respectively, which has resulted in the production of 1.6 million barrels of crude oil per day and a selling price of $40 per barrel, together with an in-built deficit of N836bn, the ASUU notes that these figures are grossly exaggerated, recognising the fact that 1.6 million barrels per day at $40 will translate into N4tn from oil revenue alone.

"ASUU also notes that with the current devaluation of the naira and undisclosed figures from the Nigeria Liquified Natural Gas, Nigeria will still generate an additional N3tn, undisclosed revenue as rightly pointed out by the Senate early this year. These coupled with the $15bn in excess crude account as well as over N400bn unspent fund from last year's budget."

The statement also condemned the Federal Government's silence on the non-implementation of its 2001 agreement with ASUU on condition of service.

It asked Nigerians to prevail on the government to "go ahead and implement the renegotiated agreement so as to achieve the much needed stability in the university system."

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200904022564570

Apr 8, 2009, 05:25 AM
NNPC, marketers dupe nation of N38bn

ABUJA - THERE are indications that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and major marketers collected a whopping N38.88 billion from the Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) for pipeline maintenance between March 2007 and June 2008 when products were distributed nationwide by trucks, 100 per cent of the time.

The Presidential Steering Committee on the Deregulation of Downstream Sector of the Petroleum Industry headed by the Governor Isa Yuguda of Bauchi State with Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State as member which discovered the irregularity has ordered that the money be returned to the Petroleum Equalisation Fund (PEF).

Vanguard investigations revealed that while the NNPC collected N29.1 billion, major marketers collected N9.7 billion for the purpose.

Further investigations revealed that at one of the meetings of the committee in mid-March, a four-man sub-committee was set up to verify claims of N2 per litre of petrol charge on pipeline maintenance as the pipelines were reportedly not being used.

In the course of further investigations, it was gathered that the sub-committee visited and interrogated officials of the NNPC and PPPRA and turned in its report on Tuesday, March 31.

An official who spoke on condition of anonymity said: "The findings of the sub-committee discovered that the N2 per litre pipeline charge was introduced into the PPPRA template in March 2007. Based on the information made available by the PPPRA through its pricing template and NNPC, all marketers and NNPC collected the N2 per litre pipeline margin between March 2007 and June 2008 because it was included in the ex-depot price.

From the calculation of the committee, this amounted to a whopping N38.88 billion for Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), otherwise known as petrol, alone."

The finding also revealed that further reviews of the application of N2 per lite charge for pipeline maintenance led to dividing it into a fixed charge of N0.50 per litre and N1.50 per litre variable components. Following the report of a committee on review of Downstream Petroleum Industry Operation in February 2008, it was decided that the application of the N2 per litre as a maintenance charge would require evidence with regard to the use of the pipelines.

But the eligibility for the N0.50 fixed charge element does not require such proof. This led the PPPRA to remove pipeline margin from the pricing template in July 2008 because of a new policy of marketer segmentation of margins.

So, since July 2008, no payments have been made to either NNPC or Marketers as pipeline charge because both NNPC and marketers have not been able to show proof of pipeline usage."

Vanguard's investigation revealed that the NNPC, notwithstanding, put up spirited defense that it had been using its pipelines for products distribution and that there was evidence to that effect and insisted that various segments of its network of pipelines had always been and would always be used.

Furthermore, the official disclosed that the finding of the sub-committee shows that "as at the time that the pipeline margin was introduced in March 2007, there was no clear guideline as to the pre-conditions for eligibility for claiming the charge. The amount (N2 per litre) pipeline charge was consequently universally applied.

When the charge for pipeline maintenance was being applied, there was well an additional charge of N2 per litre for Bridging Fund (Petroleum Equalisation Fund). The bridging is the average cost of transporting petroleum products beyond 450 kilometres from one depot to another. The logic of the payment for two logistic facilities that are mutually exclusive is not entirely clear."

Efforts to reach Mrs. Funke Kasali, Executive Secretary of the PEF for her reaction to the development proved abortive at the time of filing this report.

The official told Vanguard that the Yuguda committee was shocked by the findings and had told the NNPC and the marketers that they have to refund the money.

Vanguard investigations revealed that this finding may have been part of many irregularities committed during the administration of the former Executive Secretary of PPPRA.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/apr/6/301.html

Apr 15, 2009, 10:22 AM
Interesting stuff, Since 2005? Under the thin god called Ribadu?

Tafa Balogun's N16bn loot missing

An avalanche of petitions from Nigerians who wanted to know what happened to the N16 billion recovered from the former Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr. Tafa Balogun has compelled the House of Representatives to summon the Inspector General of Police, Mike Okiro and the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mrs Farida Waziri.

Chairman of House Committee on Police Affairs, Hon Abdul Ningi disclosed yesterday that the invitation of the two security chiefs became necessary because the committee had been inundated with petitions, alleging that the money had disappeared.

Some of the petitions, he stated alleged that the N16 billion could not be located since 2005 after Tafa agreed to part with the money as part of the conditions for his release.
Ningi said the committee was desirous of unravelling the whereabouts of the money and that Okiro and Waziri were in the best position to explain what happened to the funds recovered from the former Inspector-General of Police.

Tafa, now a free man was disgraced from office by the Nuhu Ribadu-led EFCC. He made a plea bargain to part with some of the loot traced to him as IGP and thus got a lenient jail sentence.
The invitation of Farida Waziri, according to Ningi was germane because it was the commission that prosecuted Balogun and she should know more about the money.

Abdul Ningi confirmed that the committee had written twice to both Okiro and Waziri on the subject, but got no response. Consequently, he said the committee would raise the issue at the plenary session of the House when it resumed after the Easter break. "We don't just wake up one day to say that we want to know what happen to the money collected back from the former IGP, this committee had been inundated with petitions from the public, who wanted to know what happened to the billions of naira and property recovered from Balogun," he stated.

Balogun was convicted on charges of corruption in 2005 by the Obasanjo administration and sentenced into six months after a plea bargain to return part of the money.
"When we learnt that both the police and the EFCC could not account for the money, the committee was disturbed and on two occasions, we wrote to the EFCC and the police authority demanding for information, up till now, we have no information on the whereabouts of the money," he insisted.

LINK: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2009/apr/15/national-15-04-2009-01.htm

Apr 16, 2009, 10:33 AM

How we uncovered N3bn fraud at UBE – ICPC boss

The Chairman, Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, Justice Emmanuel Ayoola (rtd), said on Wednesday that the agency recently uncovered about N3bn fraud perpetrated by some officials at the Universal Basic Education Board.

He said rather than prosecuting the culprits, the commission decided to retrieve the looted funds, which could be higher than the amount quoted, and reprimanded the corrupt civil servants.

He stated this on Wednesday when he delivered an Annual Guest Lecture organised by the University of Ibadan chapter of the Association of Veterinary Medical Students.

He said the commission decided to beam its searchlight on the agency when it received petitions which alleged that some officials there were mismanaging the huge funds at their disposal.

He said, "We investigated and discovered that the allegation was true and that many officials were involved in the scam. If we had to prosecute them, the courts would be full and we need to hire extra 200 lawyers in addition to the current 40 in the commission.

"So, what we did was that we asked them to refund the money, slap them and ask them to go and sin no more," he added.

The ICPC boss said the commission would now direct its investigation into corrupt practices going on in the tertiary institutions and external examination regulating agencies such as the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board among others.

He said the commission was worried with situations whereby students who hardly attended lectures later emerged with the best grades while the serious ones were being failed by some lecturers.

"We are going into the education sector. We will investigate the JAMB and other examination regulatory bodies. We are already receiving cooperation from the university authorities. We will police the system," he promised.

Ayoola said the students' bodies and the universities authorities would be carried along in the campaign and he urged stakeholders in the education sector to join the crusade for sanity to be restored in the system.

Rather than prosecuting corrupt people in the society, the ICPC boss efforts were being concentrated on public enlightenment and urged non- governmental organisations to assist the commission in the crusade.

He said, "I believe we are on the right track. The ICPC has created avenues for public participation in the war against corruption. However, there is still much to be done."

LINK http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200904162392667

Apr 22, 2009, 02:48 PM
Senate probes missing N9.5bn port levy

The Senate Committee on Public Accounts has sought explanations from the Nigeria Customs Service over a difference of N9.5bn in remittances from the collections of the seven per cent Port Development Levy.

Comptroller General of the Customs, Dr. Bernard-Shaw Nwadialo, said at the committee's public hearing on Tuesday that N89.4 billion was collected by the various commercial banks on behalf of the service between 2003 and 2008.

He however, said that a total of N79.9 had been remitted into the pool account domiciled at the Central Bank of Nigeria.

Nwadialo could not explain why the balance of N9.5bn was not captured in the Customs account given that collecting banks were expected to transfer the collections within a week of collecting the levies.

He said a backlog of reconciliations between the Customs, the banks and CBN could be responsible for the money being unaccounted for.

He also suggested that commercial banks were in the practice of delaying remittances for the purpose of using the collections for their private businesses, but were often not sanctioned for the illegal practice.

"Certainly, this money is not with Customs because we do not collect the money, but we believe that it can be traced between the collecting banks and the various branches of the CBN," he said.

Nwadialo also admitted that some of the funds might have gone with those collecting banks that were distressed and had not been acquired.

He said currently, there were 25 banks involved in collecting the levy, but did not have the details when asked to present the list of the banks and the status of their activities with regard to the seven per cent port levy.

Chairman of the committee, Senate Ahmed Lawan, said it was possible that the monies were missing and that is why they were not captured in the books.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200904221544926

Apr 22, 2009, 03:01 PM
N5.1bn projects abandoned in unity schools - Senate Committee

Over N5 billion worth of projects for Federal Government Colleges nationwide have been abandoned by various contractors across the country.

Senator Jonathan Zwingina, who headed the committee set up by Education Minister, Dr. Sam Egwu said this while presenting the findings of the committee across the six-geo-political zones noting that over 500 of such projects were valued at N5.11billion.

Zwingina, while presenting the report as the head of the "Ministerial Committee on the Repositioning of the Unity Colleges lamented that the committee after careful assessment and examination of over 1,000 contracts valued at N10bn, categorised 561 as abandoned, uncompleted while 306 others were classified as on-going.

"In all, the committee examined 1041 contracts, with total contract value of N10.19bn only involving 745 contractors. Of these, 561 contracts valued at N5.11bn involving 378 contractors were classified by the committee as abandoned.

"The committee also classified one 174 contracts valued at N1.49bn, involving 156 contractors as uncompleted, while 306 contracts valued at N3.59bn involving 211 contractors were categorised as on-going", he said.

The breakdown of the abandoned projects according to the six geopolitical zones are as follows: North East with 131 contracts valued at N1.5bn; North Central with 132 contracts valued at N1.3bn; South East with 94 contracts valued at N919.25million; South South with 127 contracts value at N766million; South West with 50 contracts valued at N351million and; North West with 27 contracts valued at N201million

Disclosing further, chairman of the committee revealed that several irregularities uncovered by the members during investigation included abandonment of project sites by contractors after collecting full or partial payment, award of multiple contracts to some contractors, split contracts involving three or more contractors undertaking different aspects of the same job, and supply contracts on items not requested or needed by some colleges.

Other likely frauds uncovered by the committee were existence of lumped contracts with limped amounts without specifications, award and payment of contracts for jobs already done before, uncompleted or even not done at all.

The committee having investigated and uncovered massive embezzlement of public fund meant for infrastructural development in these schools strongly recommended that "the cases which appear fraudulent be referred to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for further investigation, recovery of funds and prosecution while genuine contractors be allowed to return to site and those who have completed their jobs be paid".

The committee while recommending posting of contracts (complete and up to date records) on the website of the ministerial tenders board for easy access to those who need the information so as to avoid future scam also canvassed the establishment of an Implementation committee dedicated to the supervision and monitoring of the federal unity colleges during the period of repositioning.

The minister who commended the committee for a job well done in spite of limited resources at their disposal assured them of leaving ‘no stone unturned' "all those involved in the fraud would be guests to EFCC very soon".

It would be recalled that the committee was inaugurated on March 12, 2009 by the minister to examine and come up with recommendations for the repositioning of federal unity colleges and later re-assigned on March 30, 2009 after submission of report, to assess and recommend way forward for all contracts awarded between 1998 and 2008 in the federal unity colleges.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/apr/21/807.html

Apr 22, 2009, 05:24 PM
Felix, my brother! I share your pain. If all these accounts of corruption you have so arduously documented on this thread do not at long last incite Nigerians to violent action, I am afraid then there is no hope for Nigeria. I do not know how much more a people can take and still maintain a semblance of sanity. Do we have kleptomania (megakleptomania, that is) running through our blood that we have all lost touch with reality?

Apr 26, 2009, 06:20 PM
N3.5b Contract Award: EFCC Quizzes Rural Electrification Agency MD

The managing director of the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), Sam Gekpe, has been quizzed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for allegedly not following due process in the payment of contracts awarded by his agency.

His interrogation has coincided with the freezing of the accounts of no fewer than 60 contractors working for REA nationwide for alleged collaboration.

Gekpe was said to have been a guest of the EFCC recently where he was made to explain why the REA under his management allegedly paid contractors handling key projects for the agency about N3.5 billion or 85 per cent as balance of the total sum of contract he awarded in a hurry.

The EFCC actually wanted to find out why the Gekpe-led REA paid the contractors both the mobilisation fee of 15 per cent and the balance of 85 per cent within a space of two weeks in December, 2008.

The investigation is coming a few days after the anti-corruption commission arraigned Chairman of Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Ransome Owan and six of his commissioners over allegations of fraud to the tune of N3 billion.

This newspaper gathered that the EFCC had frozen all the accounts of the 60 contractors working for the REA without their knowledge, a situation that has thrown them into confusion.

EFCC's Head of Media and Publicity, Femi Babafemi, told Sunday Independent that Gekpe had awarded contracts in 2008 and paid each contractor 15 per cent of the contract sum to mobilise them to the site as is the tradition.

He added, however, that the managing director went ahead to pay the contractors the balance of 85 per cent at the end of 2008 without some of them moving to their sites.

"The normal thing is to pay 15 per cent mobilisation when a contract is awarded and the balance of 85 per cent paid after delivering the job, but the MD, towards the end of the year, moved to pay the contactors the 85 per cent without them completing the jobs," Babafemi explained.

Babafemi also explained that the commission froze the accounts of the contractors to ensure that the money is not withdrawn by them.

"We have frozen the accounts to prevent the withdrawal of the money pending when our investigation is completed and what the findings are," he said.

When Sunday Independent sought the view of Gekpe he was said not to be available.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article02

Aisosa Imagbe
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Apr 28, 2009, 07:34 PM
Felix, I have to applaud your indefatiguable and continued effort at documenting/cataloging an encyclopedia of financial mayhem being perpetrated on Nigeria by Nigerian officials entrusted with the management of the economic and financial security of the nation.

Keep up the GOOD work. As they say, it is a dirty job, but someone's got to do it. I duff my hat to you.

May 4, 2009, 07:14 PM
$97m Fraud: Yar'Adua Considers Extraditing Martins To U.S.

President Umaru Yar'Adua may extradite Police Equipment Foundation (PEF) National Co-ordinator, Kenny Martins, to the United States to face charges of fraud.
The government is in a dilemma over the demand for a $1 million legal fee by the lawyer representing it in a lawsuit instituted by Calvary Security Group in the United States, which was allegedly defrauded of $97.25 million by Martins.
Calvary Security had taken Nigeria to court in New York on the basis that it went into business with the PEF because evidence was produced that it was a government parastatal.
Although the fee demanded by the U.S. legal firm was the least proposal submitted by the eight legal firms contacted to defend the country, Yar'Adua is said not to be disposed to paying the $1 million, which he considers a huge amount.
It was learnt that he was furious when the issue was mentioned to him, and lamented that his government is not prepared to waste such money on an irrelevant legal battle brought on by the misdeed of one person.
A source in Aso Rock and another at police headquarters in Abjua confirmed on Sunday that Yar'Adua has mandated the Foreign Affairs Ministry and the Ministry of Justice to collaborate on the way forward.
Yar'Adua would not mind extraditing Martins to face the law in the U.S., if that will help clear the image of Nigeria and prevent it from paying the legal fee.
Martins, who was arrested last Tuesday by the police, is expected to be charged to court today in Abuja.
The case instituted against Nigeria came up for mentioning in a New York court on April 24 and was adjourned to July 26 to enable the country prepare its defence.
The source explained: "If you are in the shoes of Yar'Adua, will you pay such an amount in a case in which all that Nigeria needs do is prove that the PEF is not a government parastatal?
"In this era of economic meltdown, Yar'Adua is right in questioning the sum demanded as legal fee. Just because of the misdeed of a single individual, we are about losing such a big sum. You can call Yar'Adua a tight-fisted man if you like."
Calvary Security is demanding $30 million in damages, aside the request that the money collected from it by Martins be returned by Nigeria.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article02

May 6, 2009, 08:42 AM
Customs' probe: Nigeria loses N300bn yearly

An estimated N300bn revenue is lost yearly by Nigeria due to alleged ‘‘corruption and organisational inefficiency‘‘ in the Nigeria Customs Service, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Dimeji Bankole, said on Tuesday.

He explained that the staggering figure represented the difference between collected and "collectable" revenue by the NCS.

Bankole spoke in Abuja as the House Committee on Customs and Excise, opened an investigative hearing on the "State of Nigeria Customs Service and the Poor Performance of its Statutory Duties."

The speaker‘s comments came as the committee, headed by Mr. Yakubu Dogara, gave a 24-hour ultimatum to the Minister of Finance, Dr. Mansur Mukhtar, to appear before it or risk arrest.

Bankole said, ‘‘A combination of factors has led to massive corruption of pandemic proportions in the Customs.

"This, in turn, has resulted in the ever-widening gulf between collectable revenue and actual customs‘ collection.

"Conservative estimates of the difference between the two are in the region of 60 per cent.

"What this means in effect is that if the NCS meets its revenue target of N500bn for 2009 fiscal year, the nation would have lost not less than N300bn to corruption and organisational inefficiency."

Mukhtar, who is the Chairman of the Board of the NCS, was billed to make a presentation to kick-start the probe, but he failed to turn up on Tuesday.

The committee had to reschedule the hearing for Wednesday (today) to ensure that the minister made the presentation.

He was given up to 10am to appear before the committee on Wednesday or a warrant of arrest would be served on him.

Dogara had informed members of the committee that though the minister was "duly served a summons" to appear before the committee in his capacity as the chairman of the board of the NCS, he failed to show up.

He was also said to have neither explained in writing nor made telephone calls to give reasons why he could not attend the hearing.

Following Dogara‘s comments, the members took turns to criticise Mukhtar for his absence at the hearing.

Mr. Jerry Manwe described it as "disheartening," saying that his attitude smacked of lack of respect for the parliament.

"We should give him up to 10am tomorrow (today) to appear, failing which a warrant of arrest should be served on him," he said.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200905066453412

May 6, 2009, 08:49 AM
EFCC arrests UBEC directors, Perm Sec over N4.7bn fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Tuesday arrested a former Executive Secretary of the Universal Basic Education Commission and three directors over an alleged N1.7bn fraud.

It also arrested the Permanent Secretary, Rural Electrification Agency, Dr. Aliyu Abdulahi, over a N3bn contract fraud.

EFCC operatives, numbering 14, stormed the UBEC premises at about 11.30am and arrested the suspects after about four hours‘ interrogation.

But it was gathered that one of the directors escaped through a fence on sighting the operatives.

According to a source at the commission, various documents on the said contract were retrieved.

The contracts which were said to have been awarded in 2005, did not follow due process as stipulated in the existing laws of the land.

According to the source, "Some of the contracts which were awarded in 2005 did not follow due process thereby contravening the existing guidelines."

For instance, the source said an N800m contract which was awarded to Inter-Market Limited for the supply of plastic chairs to the agency was alleged to have negated due process regulations.

Some of the UBEC officials arrested were Dr. Andrew Ekpanobi, Mr. Michael Aule, Professor Gidado Tahir and Hajia Adizat, the director of finance.

In another development, the EFCC director of operations, Mr. Tunde Ogunsakin, was on Monday redeployed to the police from where he was seconded to the anti-graft agency.

He has been replaced by an Assistant Commissioner of Police, Mr. Steven Otitoju.

The agency's spokesman, Mr. Femi Babafemi, confirmed the development to our correspondent on Tuesday but did not state the details.

But sources said the removal might not be unconnected with an alleged examination malpractice.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art200905067185140

May 7, 2009, 05:59 PM
Reps' panel alleges payment of N1.3b for undelivered aircraft

Quote Of The Day:
"By law, we should be at the oil platforms to ascertain the quantity of crude oil lifted from the country, but unfortunately, we are not there. We do not have the equipment to reach those places and so, we do not know the quantity of oil that is being lifted from the country.:eek::eek::eek: Comptroller-General of The Almighty Nigerian Customs!

THE House of Representatives Committee on Customs and Excise yesterday said that the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) paid N1.3 billion for two aircraft that were not delivered to the agency.

Also, the Comptroller-General of Customs, Bernard Shaw Nwadialo, alluded to earlier reports, when he told the committee that the agency had no record of crude oil lifted from the country by both government and the oil companies.

Testifying at the ongoing public hearing on 'The State of Nigeria Customs Service and the Poor Performance of its Statutory Functions," Nwadialo said by the law establishing the Customs, its officials were supposed to be present at oil platforms throughout the country. He confessed the service had no records of the quantity of crude oil being lifted from Nigeria. The Customs' Chief added that the service is empowered by law to carry out fiscalisation at the platforms to determine the quantity of crude lifting but such has not been the situation.

The panel raised issues about the air wing of the Customs, claiming that N1.3 billion was approved for the purchase of two patrol aircraft in September, 2007 and the money was paid for the planes which ought to be delivered within eight months but up till now none has been supplied.

Supported by some officers of the Service Nwadialo explained that only part payment had been made. The committee insisted and tendered audit report from the Office of the Auditor-General for the Federation, which stated that the sum of N1.3 billion had been fully paid for the aircraft.

"By law, we should be at the oil platforms to ascertain the quantity of crude oil lifted from the country, but unfortunately, we are not there. We do not have the equipment to reach those places and so, we do not know the quantity of oil that is being lifted from the country. We have officers in Escravos, but they are not doing fiscalisation. We don't really have officers that take records of what is being taken out. That is the position." Nwadialo said.

At this point, the committee, chaired by Yakubu Dogara, expressed concern that oil which was the major revenue earner of the country is being handled with levity. The panel drew Nwadialo's attention to sections of the enabling Act and noted that some areas were not being observed by the Service in terms of performance of its statutory functions.

"If we are not safeguarding what we produce and take out, particularly in the oil sector, which is our major source of revenue, then there is danger. Section 57 of your enabling Act says there shall be joint inspection by Customs, Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and Weight and Measures Department of the Ministry of Commerce while section 28 provides that exporter shall submit goods declaration to Customs without which no export takes place," he said.

Nwadialo admitted that their submission was right but added that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) had not been complying with the provisions of the Act. He further said several meetings had been held to resolve the matter, but all proved unsuccessful. The Customs' chief also said that the service does not have the required equipment to carry out such job, stressing that on a few occasions they had to use choppers belonging to the oil companies for some essential services.

He disclosed that in its effort to address the problem, the Service had made requests for vessels and at a point, NNPC gave them some speed boats, which were kept in Calabar, Cross River State but were later taken to Lagos because of the activities of militants.

A member of the panel, Albert Abiodun Adeogun, a retired Customs officer, said Nwadialo was being economical with the truth. He said the fact of the matter was that the Nigerian Navy does not want to see Customs officials around the high sea, adding that at point, some Customs officers were harassed by Naval personnel and their guns were seized. "I belong to two worlds. The truth of the situation has not been told. The fact is that the Navy does not allow Customs to get to those places. There were instances where the Navy seized Customs guns, sometimes beat them. This is the problem which needs to be addressed," he said.

Dogara immediately, directed the committee's secretariat to summon the Chief of Naval Staff for appearance.

The audit report also said that 21 vehicles allegedly bought by the Customs for N390 million could also not be traced. The panel said another N19 million approved by the Federal Government for the construction of office blocks was used for a 40 feet container in Kaduna, which was converted to an office while another sum of N109 million was paid out to some contractors for jobs not done.
The Customs' team faulted some aspects of the audit report and the committee asked them to come with proofs.

Earlier, the panel had drawn the attention of the Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF) Alhaji Ibrahim Dankwambo, to a discrepancy in the figures submitted to the committee by his office and the one presented by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on the revenue generated and remitted by the Customs since 2000. But the AGF expressed surprise with a promise to get back with a harmonised version.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/may/7/28.html

May 7, 2009, 06:17 PM
6 Billion Naira Scam: Senator Arrested, 3 House members on the run

Arrests by the Economic and Financial Crimes Com-mission (EFCC) over the N6 billion rural electrification contract scam continued yesterday with the detention of Chairman, Senate Committee on Power, Senator Nicholas Ugbani.

Three unnamed members of the House of Represent-atives linked to the fraud are reportedly on the run with operatives of the commission on their trail to ensure their arrest and arraignment by Friday.

Already, the Managing Director of Rural Electrification Agency (REA), Sam Gekpe, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Power, Alhaji Abdullahi Aliyo, who was the acting minister when the contract was awarded, and one of the contractors handling the project, Emeka Ohagbena, are also in the net of the anti-graft agency.

Sources at the commission told THISDAY that Ohagbena registered nine companies and got 21 contracts.

The lid of the scam was blown open when the contactors involved in the projects made a case for the closure of their account when the EFCC noticed that a huge amount of money was paid out by the Agency towards the end of last year.

The anti-graft agency quickly froze the accounts pending the verification, the sources and purpose of the payment.

THISDAY learnt that the affected contractors, however, took their petitions to various quarters, complaining that the EFCC had blocked payment for contracts duly awarded to them.

Spokesperson for the EFCC, Femi Babafemi, confirmed the arrest but declined further comment on the ground that investigation was ongoing.

The commission may be working on the theory that the REA boss and a powerful cabal who had interest in the contract and needed to collect their share of the money quickly were the ones behind the decision to pay the money in bulk.

The affected persons will remain in EFCC custody, while the fleeing members of the House of Represen-tatives are arrested so that they can be arraigned immediately.

Meanwhile, officials of the Universal basic Education Commission (UBEC) arrested by the EFCC on Tuesday in connection with the N1.7 billion contract scam also rocking the Commission are still with the EFCC and are expected to be arraigned soon.

A source confirmed that the affected officials would appear in court by tomorrow or latest on Monday.

Yesterday, THISDAY reported the arrest of the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Power over the N6 billion scandal.

On December 30, 2008 a few hours to the new year Aliyu was said to have authorised the release of the money to be shared from the account of the REA.

Some members of the National Assembly including a member of the House of Representatives who was very prominent during the controversial power sector probe last year are said to have benefited a huge chunk from the sharing bazaar.

The latest arrests, according to an insider, are intended to send warning signals to other public officers who are falling foul of the anti-corruption stand of the government.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/may/7/211.html

May 9, 2009, 07:35 PM
Reps Probe: How Customs Ruined Nigerian Economy - Ex-Comptroller Generals Face Prosecution

The last may not have been heard of unbriddled corruption going on at the Nigerian Customs Services, Saturday Tribune can reveal authoritatively.

This is sequel to startling revelations bothering on huge national revenue losses through the customs which has been rocking the public hearing by the House of Representatives on the state of customs services between 2000 and 2008.

The Auditor General disclosed, through the audit report he filed before the House, that the non-release of payment vouchers by the customs for audit inspection, non-return of personnel/cash advances, uncertified capital payments, unexplained disappearance of customs equipment including arms, ammunition, seized vehicles and goods, purchase of fake bullet-proof jackets and other sharp practices are the bane of the well-being of the customs.

According to the audit report, the non remittance of revenue due to the Federal Government runs into billions of naira, starting with a general loss of revenue totalling N8, 193, 610, 127, 88 due to waivers, concessions and exceptions at the Kirikiri lighter terminal and the Murtala Muhamed International Airport between 2006 and 2008.

The reports also harped on the revenue loss due to exemption at the Port- Harcourt Area Commands 1-3 in 2002 as well as non remittance of revenue in 2001 by the Warri Area Command of the Customs to the tune of N2, 637, 613, 296, 56, while the customs suffered another loss of N2, 915, 496, 707, 46 also in Port Harcourt 1-3 in 2002 due to unutilised clean report of inspection.

There have also been cases of over-payment of telephone bills by the authorities of the Customs as the Auditor General alluded to a query he had issued on the reported payment of N240 million for that purpose, whereas an audit account on the payment revealed that only N122 million was paid, leaving an outstanding balance of N117 million not accounted for.

The auditors report also fingered three Nigerian banks (names withheld) as culprits in the act of perpetrating fraud with the revenue generated by the Customs by delaying the remittance of the amounts deposited with them into the Federation Account on behalf of the Central Bank of Nigeria for more than 90 days

The sharp practices by the banks with the revenues generated by the customs, according to the report, involved N155, 271, 650, 56 which they deducted from N77, 647, 580, 314, 91 collected as revenue from import duties for 2003 as Commission on Turnover (CoT), a practice termed ‘a violation of the law' by the House.

The banks, as explained in the report, only paid N77, 480, 553, 627, 14 to the Central Bank, thus short-changing the Federal Government to the tune of N11, 755, 037, 21 by means of illegal charges of CoT.

Cases of disappearances of patrol vehicles for the customs were also highlighted by the Auditor General who alluded to a case in which retiring officers carted away seven new Toyota Hilux vehicles to the tune of N52 million for anti smuggling operations along the Nigerian borders at the time an auditing of the vehicles was due.

He also told the House Committee on Customs that another set of 18 vehicles of different brands claimed to have been acquired for use at the air-wing Kaduna to the tune of N350 were not sighted during audit checks.

Moreover, the Auditor General's report stated that N274 million belonging to the Customs was illegally transferred by top officials who could not state where the money could be tracked in the vote book of the Customs.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/09052009/news/news1.html

May 9, 2009, 07:44 PM
Also see: Customs: N13bn Not Remitted to Fed Account

House of Representatives Committee on Customs and Excise yesterday said it discovered yet another discrepancy, as about N13billion collected by the Service was not remitted into the Federation Account.
The investigative public hearing on the Service entered its third day yesterday.
Also, arms and ammunitions, including 55 AK47 rifles purchased for the operational use of the Service could not be accounted for in its inventory. Besides the missing assault rifles valued at about N11.8million, there were also other assorted arms and ammunitions reported to have been lost to armed robbers, or simply missing at various Customs Commands across the federation.Auditor General of the Federation, Mr Robert Ejanavi, who testified at the public hearing, substantiated his earlier memorandum to the House Committee on the discrepancies between revenue figures provided in the account books of the Service and figures in the accounts of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

MORE HERE http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=142885

May 10, 2009, 03:08 PM
US seeks to extradite Briton in Nigerian bribery case-Guardian.co.uk
Saturday, 09 May 2009 06:34 By David Leigh and Rob Evans E-mail | Print | PDF
US prosecutors plan to launch extradition proceedings tomorrow against a British citizen alleged to be the key figure in an international bribery scandal.

After more than five years of investigations covering half a dozen countries, a London solicitor, Jeffrey Tesler, has been arrested at the behest of US authorities and accused of being the "bagman" who conveyed $180m in bribes to Nigerian politicians, including one of the country's presidents.

Tesler is due to appear at Horseferry Road magistrates court in London tomorrow. If the extradition bid succeeds, he will face trial and possible jail in Texas.

He has hired William Clegg, a prominent defence QC whose clients have included the man eventually acquitted last year of the Jill Dando murder, Barry George, as well as major fraud defendants and alleged Balkan war criminals.

"Mr Tesler's stated position is that he strongly denies any wrongdoing and has acted at all times within the law," his solicitors told the Guardian.

The case against Tesler is outlined in a 29-page indictment issued by the US department of justice, published in full online by the Guardian. He is accused of spending a decade, between 1994 and 2004, conspiring to break America's foreign corrupt practices act, in a case which has already led to one of the largest corruption fines ever levied against a US corporation and which overshadowed the Bush-era vice-presidency of Dick Cheney.

London-based company executives seeking construction contracts are alleged to have described Tesler as their "cultural adviser".

The president of Nigeria for five years from 1993 was the notoriously corrupt General Sani Abacha, who looted the oil-rich west African state of billions before his death in 1998. Tesler is alleged to have arranged for $1m a time in $100 bills to be stacked into a leather case and delivered to a politician's hotel room in order to fund the Nigerian election campaigns in 2003 that returned President Olusegun Obasanjo to power.

Tesler, a former partner in a north London high street firm, holds Israeli dual nationality and a Swiss court says $2.26m of his assets have been moved into family accounts in Israel.

A US arrest warrant has been issued for a second Briton, a former company executive, Wojciech Chodan, also accused of breaching the foreign corrupt practices act. At his home in the Somerset village of Nunney, neighbours said Chodan had been away for a fortnight. Legal sources say UK prosecutors are willing to hand over Tesler and Chodan.

The developments have transformed a worldwide corruption inquiry into the $6bn received by an international consortium to build the Bonny Island natural gas plant in Nigeria. Investigations were first launched in France in 2003 and then taken up in Washington by a small team led by Mark Mendelsohn of the US department of justice. Help was given by the UK Serious Fraud Office, but little progress made.

The case was politically sensitive for years in the US because Cheney, although not personally linked to the alleged bribe payments, previously ran Halliburton, the US engineering giant whose subsidiary led the consortium.

May 10, 2009, 03:11 PM
Nigerian prosecutor Nuhu Ribadu, who headed an anti-corruption commission that sought initially to investigate the Bonny Island deal, was forced to flee to the UK. Now in exile, he says he was the subject of an assassination attempt when his bullet-proof car was sprayed with gunfire. "Corruption has taken over the engine of government in Nigeria," he said. "It's what runs everything."

Last year the Texan chief executive of the US construction subsidiary, Jack Stanley, was forced to admit taking personal "kickbacks" from his company's Nigerian slush funds. Now facing seven years in jail, he testified about the bribery in the hope of a reduced sentence.

Halliburton agreed in February this year to pay a record $579m fine, while its subsidiary, Kellogg Brown & Root, admitted meeting and agreeing to bribe "three successive former holders of a top-level office" in Nigeria.

The Swiss courts announced they would overrule legal objections and release bank records, including those linked to Tesler. The Swiss accounts include cash linked to Tesler's Gibraltar-registered vehicle, Tristar, and money passing through other secretive offshore entities in Panama, Liechtenstein, the Bahamas, the Turks & Caicos islands and the Seychelles.

Obasanjo, the ex-president, has been forced to defend himself publicly from allegations of corruption since the Tesler indictment was issued. Accused last month on US TV by investigative journalist Lowell Bergman of having been implicated by Stanley, he responded: "I've been investigated and reinvestigated and reinvestigated. Nobody can find corruption around me."

Obasanjo subsequently told the BBC the allegations against him personally were "absolute nonsense … I do not say that people in my government were not corrupt, but I am not corrupt".

The London connection

The developments in the Bonny Island case highlight repeated allegations from other countries that Britain has been soft on overseas bribery.

The British taxpayer helped finance part of the Nigerian deal and some of the evidence suggests key operations may have taken place in London to avoid strict US anti-corruption laws.

MW Kellogg Ltd, then a subsidiary of Halliburton, was eligible for UK taxpayer assistance because it was UK-registered and based at the Kellogg Tower in Greenford, west London.

Liz Symons, then Labour's trade minister, claimed Whitehall officials carried out "thorough and far-reaching scrutiny" before providing a loan guarantee in January 2003. Due diligence inquiries showed "no suspicions of corruption", the export credit agency ECGD claimed. Symons boasted publicly: "This is a good example of sound financial judgment going hand in hand with ECGD's business principles."

Shortly after her claim that "the highest standards have been met", a final $500,000 eve-of-election bribe instalment arrived in Abuja in April 2003, according to the Tesler indictment. The bulky naira notes were stacked in a vehicle, left to be discreetly picked up from a hotel car park by an official of the Nigerian state oil company, for use in political campaigning.

May 12, 2009, 06:30 PM

N6bn scam: Elumelu, others surrender - Detained by EFFC - May face trial this week - As EFCC moves to seize ex-Gov Kalu’s properties

Lanre Adewole and Taiwo Adisa, Abuja
Tuesday, May 12, 2009

THE three members of the House of Representatives, who were fingered in the alleged N6 billion fraud in the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), on Monday, surrendered themselves to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

They are: Chairman, House Committee on Power, Honourable Ndudi Godwin Elumelu; his deputy, Honourable Muhammed Jibo, and chairman, House Committee on Rural Development, Honourable Paulinus Igwe.

They are being detained by the commission which has concluded plans to charge them to court this week alongside others who were arrested and detained over the matter.

Commission’s spokesperson, Mr. Femi Babafemi, confirmed that the trio were being detained by the commission after they gave themselves up on Monday.

Following the commission’s inability to get them arrested all through last week, moves had been commenced to get the court to declare them wanted before they eventually surrendered to the commission on Monday.

Those already arrested over the alleged fraud are the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Power, Dr. Aliyu Abdullahi, the chairman of Senate Committee on Power, Senator Nicholas Yahaya Ugbane, one of the contractors that, allegedly, handled the projects, Chief Emeka Ohiagbena, and the Managing Director of the Rural Electrification Agency, Sam Gakpe.

All of them, according to Babafemi, would face a joint trial expected to commence this week. The fraud was said to have been perpetrated between November and December 2008, when the arrested permanent secretary was the acting minister of power.

It was learnt that the Grid Extension and Solar projects were used in perpetrating the alleged fraud. The Grid Extension Project was said to have gulped N3.5 billion while the solar project was reportedly contracted out at N1.8 billion.

It was also gathered that the N6 billion project was not in the budget sent to the National Assembly by the executive arm and was reportedly built into it by the lawmakers on the power committees in the two chambers, with the alleged active connivance of the top officials of the Rural Electrification Agency and the Ministry of Power.

The contracts for the two projects were said to have been awarded without due process by the agency to 113 companies, with 45 companies working on the solar project and Chief Ohiagbena’s nine companies, allegedly, getting 21 contracts.

By November 28, 2008, the money for the contracts was said to have been collected from the Budget Office, with 15 per cent of the entire contracts sum, allegedly, paid into the contractors’ accounts.

In order to beat the deadline for the return of the unspent budgetary allocations, those behind the alleged scam, reportedly, paid the remaining 85 per cent of the contracts sum, even when the contractors had not commenced work at all.

The affected contractors were said to have started withdrawing the money paid into their accounts before the anti-graft commission got wind of the alleged scam and froze the accounts of the contractors.

Nigerian Tribune also gathered that those arrested in connection with the alleged N1.7 billion contract fraud in the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) would be charged to court this week.

Babafemi confirmed that one of the indicted directors, Mulkat Mufnang, who allegedly bolted, when the operatives of the commission came calling, had been arrested by the commission.

Others arrested in connection with the alleged scam included former Executive Secretary of the Universal Basic Education Commission, Professor Gidado Tahir, Mrs. Hadiza Kura (Director, Financial and Accounts), Mr. Andrew Ekpunobi (Director, Physical Planning) and Mike Awole, an accountant.

Also arrested was an American, Alex Cozman of InterMarket Nigeria Limited, who, reportedly, handled the controversial contract. Nigerian Tribune further gathered that the contract was awarded in November 2004 to InterMarket for the sum of N850 per plastic chair despite an order of the Federal Government banning the importation of plastic chairs.

A source further added that despite the contract being awarded without due process, UBEC still went ahead to pay another N45.1 million to the contractor for the movement of the plastic chairs to the country even which the main contract sum had covered such expenses.

It was revealed that another N16.5 million was paid the contractor for the clearance of the chairs, even when it was stated in the main contract that the contractor would bear such costs.

In another development, the EFCC has commenced moves to confiscate the assets of former governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu, over alleged money laundering, using the process of law.

Consequently, the commission has slammed a fresh 83-count charge of money laundering on him, accusing him of using public funds to purchase landed property in choice cities of the world.

The commission had earlier preferred a 107-count charge of money laundering and official corruption against him, alleging that he stole about N1.7 billion belonging to the state while he was governor between 1999 and 2007.

The former governor lost in his bid to stop the trial last week. The commission has now amended the charge, bringing the total to 190, with the fresh 83 counts said to be the product of fresh evidence that he used the allegedly laundered funds to buy landed property.

The properties, according to the commission, had been traced to Potomac in the United States of America, United Kingdom and Lagos. A commission source put the total number of the properties at 15, adding that the anti-graft agency would be asking the court for an order to get Kalu to forfeit all the properties to the Federal Government.

Apart from the landed properties, assets linked to him or, allegedly, being held in trust for him by proxies, are also said to be targeted by the anti-corruption agency for confiscation.

The former governor was equally accused of not declaring the said assets while in office. When the Nigerian Tribune sought to know if the Code of Conduct Tribunal would not be a more appropriate body to handle the assets trial, the commission noted that since it was proceeds of alleged money laundering that were used in purchasing the said property, the case was still within the purview of the commission.

Justice Adamu Bello, in his ruling on a preliminary objection by Kalu to his trial held that Kalu must face prosecution. The former governor said he would challenge the ruling.

Still awaiting headway in the prosecution of all the other EFCC victims. We shall never get to the bottom of the Haliburton scandal in this life time for sure.

I thought the EFCC had forgotten about ex-governor Orji Kalu. I hope he is allowed to pay a fine like ex-governor Igbinedion did. What ever happened to the cases involving Mrs. Patricia Etteh and the former minister of health, Adenike Grange?

May 14, 2009, 01:27 PM
N15bn scam: EFCC detains Transcorp's GMD, two others

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has detained the Group Managing Director of Transcorp, Mr. Tom Iseghohi over an alleged N15bn contract scam.

Also detained in connection with the scam are the company's Deputy General Manager, Mr. Mike Okoli, and the Company Secretary, Mr. Mohammed Abdullahi.

The suspects were alleged to have engaged in the indiscriminate awards of contracts.

Sources close to the EFCC told our correspondent in Abuja that Iseghohi and two other suspects were handed over to the commission on Tuesday night by the State Security Service and were detained for interrogation.

According to the sources, the suspects allegedly awarded some of the controversial contracts and payment on services using different companies.

The sources further said that some of the suspects were alleged to have paid $100,000 to Global Information Technology Incorporated, a company based in USA toward the end of 2008 to investigate a fire incident that occurred in NICON property at Saka Tinubu, Lagos.

Another $108m was also alleged to have been paid to Ankor Pointe Integrated Limited between 2007 till date for the management of Transcorp Oil block OPL.

In addition, while about N35m was said to have been paid to Hasasa between November 2007 and August 2008 as consultancy fees, Hamattan Ventures was said to have also got $500m for organising meetings for the GMD overseas.

The source further said that the suspects were also alleged to have paid about N205m within four months as legal fees.

When contacted, the Head, Media and Publicity of the anti-graft agency, Mr. Femi Babafemi, confirmed the arrest.

He said that investigation was still going on to establish their level of complicity but however, declined further comments.

LINK: http://www.punchontheweb.com/Articl.aspx?theartic=Art20090514395246

May 14, 2009, 01:40 PM
Senate probes bribery claims over oil bill

THE whiff of scandal around the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria got thicker yesterday with yet another allegation making the rounds.

The scandal this time is rooted in the Petroleum Industry Bill, which promoters, the Presidency, said was meant to engender radical reforms in the nation's cash cow - the oil industry.

It has been alleged that some senators have been conscripted by some oil firms into a grand scheme aimed at shooting down the petroleum bill.

But the Special Adviser to the President on Petroleum Matters, Dr. Emmanuel Egboga, who allegedly accused the Senate of plotting against the proposed law, has denied making disparaging statements against the lawmakers during his recent visit to United States of America (USA).

As part of the alleged plot, some senators reportedly travelled to Ghana to attend a meeting with some oil companies. This report of the Ghana trip was confirmed yesterday by Ayogu Eze, Chairman of Senate Committee on Information, who lamented that his colleagues, who went on the trip never informed the Senate leadership about it, an action which violated Rule 21 of the Senate Standing Order.

Senators, who allegedly made the Ghana trip, are Mohammed Kabir Jibril (Kaduna State); Nimi Barigha-Amange (Bayelsa); Mohammed Mohammed (Bauchi); Emmanuel Paulker (Bayelsa); Adamu Sidi Ali (FCT); Awaisu Kuta (Niger); Joseph Akaagerge (Benue); Eyinnaya Abaribe (Abia); Felix Kolawole Bajomo (Ogun); and Tawar Umbi Wada (Gombe).

The Senate has, however, ordered a full investigation into the matter by its Ethics, Code of Conduct and Public Petitions Committee, with a strong commitment to punishing any indicted senator.

LINK: http://www.ngrguardiannews.com/news/article01//indexn2_html?pdate=140509&ptitle=Senate%20probes%20bribery%20claims%20over%2 0oil%20bill

May 18, 2009, 06:52 PM
'10,000 Ghost Workers On Customs Payroll'

Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) under the administration of its immediate past Comptroller General, Jacob Buba Gyang, has been alleged to have harboured 10,000 ghost workers in its employ between 2005 and 2008.

This is exactly half of the total staff strength of 20,000 the organisation claimed to have maintained up to April 2008.

Gyang was officially installed as the 'Gbong-Gwom Jos', the paramount ruler of Jos, at an elaborate ceremony at the weekend in the Plateau State capital.

It was also alleged that the Customs under him awarded several "over bloated and fictitious contracts" that ran into several billions of naira in defiance of due process and financial guidelines within the period.

The allegations were made by an independent fraud and crimes investigation outfit, Business Venture Watch, at the on-going House of Representatives Committee on Customs public hearing on the activities of the Customs.

Business Venture Watch's operation covers Customs and several other government agencies and corporations in relations to investigation of frauds, corruption and malpractices among others.

Making his presentation entitled, "The Decay and Massive Fraud in the Nigerian Customs Service, a Need for Urgent and Thorough Investigation", at the weekend, Kola Shola of Business Venture Watch, Lagos, also alleged that NCS was involved in various contract scams.

In the 18-paragraph sworn-affidavit with 25 annexure deposed to at the High Court of Lagos, the petitioner stated that "the NCS contracts for the supply of two new Bell Helicopters Model 427 configuration plus kit description auxiliary accessories, disassembly parking assembly, insurance and freight at a cost of $11,396,668.50 to Messrs Manyata Engineering Service Ltd, Abuja, and these helicopters are yet to be supplied to date".

It was also claimed in the affidavit that NCS paid consultancy fee of over N5.4 million to Messrs Metropolitan Consortium Nigeria Ltd for project supervision, contrary to Federal Government policy and guidelines.

The petition, which was accompanied supported by documents, also alleged that on February 21, 2008, the Customs awarded contract to Messrs DSU Capital Initiative Ltd, Abuja, for two Toyota Lexus Jeep 2007 Model LX 470 with all options and back-up spare parts at a cost of N42,900,000 (VAT inclusive).

The petitioner also claimed that the same contractor also got contract to supply two Toyota Prado Jeep 2007 Model (GX) with back-up spare parts at N26,340,000 on August 21, 2008.

Another example of bloated contract, it claimed, was the supply and installation of one 100KVA Perkins Sound Proof Generator for the NCS's Bauchi office at N8,980,500 (VAT inclusive).

The contract was awarded to Messrs Loss Reduction Service Nigeria Ltd, Abuja on February 21, 2008.

The petition said contract for the Customs Academy at Gwagwalada, Abuja was awarded at N280 million, but nothing was on the ground to show for the expenditure.

It also revealed that NCS Board under the management of Gyang awarded contract to refurbish Customs

aircraft that almost crashed a few weeks after in Katsina at N450 million.

The petitioner stated that N670 million was spent for the construction of aircraft hanger without due process, just as N480 million budgeted for and drawn for the construction of the Zaria Customs office cannot be accounted for.
He also alleged that customs

board/management within the period under review engaged in dirty importation and release of contrabands, prohibited items, including firearms, textile, shoes and furniture via containers.

The petitioner also claimed that the immediate past Comptroller-General failed to comply with the Federal Government directive to return unspent fund to the treasury.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article03

May 21, 2009, 08:24 AM

£210bn looted in Nigeria since 1960 -EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has said over £210 billion has been looted in the country since 1960, with the late General Sani Abacha looting about $4 billion in four years.

The commission said this at a joint press briefing with the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC) on "non-conviction based asset forfeiture - an effective weapon in the fight against corruption," in Abuja, on Wednesday.

Three experts from UNODC, namely Oliver Stolpe, Martin Palaine and Tim Daniel, in their presentations said passing the bill on non-conviction based forfeiture of proceeds and instrumentalities of unlawful activity into law by the National Assembly would be of assistance to the anti- corruption agencies and Nigerians in the fight against corruption.

According to Stolpe, impact of looting was enormous, as it drained currency reserves, reduced tax base, harmed competition, undermined free trade and increased poverty levels.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/21052009/news/news3.html

May 21, 2009, 08:37 AM
$450m Abacha Loot Yet To Be Traced - British Expert

Up to $450 million of the over $3 billion allegedly stolen by the late Head of State, Sani Abacha, cannot be traced, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) disclosed in Abuja on Wednesday.

The disclosure was made by Tim Daniel, a legal expert from the United Kingdom brought in by UNODC to help the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) draft the Bill on Non-Conviction Based Forfeiture of Proceeds and Instrumentalities of Unlawful Activity.

Daniel announced that even though there is proof the $450 million is stacked away somewhere, it is yet to be traced.

According to him, while the $1.9 billion recovered from the Abacha family by the Federal Government is a major success story in assets recovery, there are still funds stolen from Nigeria yet to be recovered.

He said $300 million is still to be repatriated to Nigeria from Luxembourg where it was siphoned by Abacha, despite the letters of request by the Olusegun Obasanjo administration.

Daniel added that Abacha also stashed $400 million in Liechtenstein which Nigeria is yet to recover.

"The cases of Luxembourg and Liechtenstein are cases of monies frozen or lost by banks," he stressed.

However, Daniel stressed that the Federal Government and its partners have intensified the search for the funds, with hope for positive results.

Breaking down the $1.9 billion recovered from Abacha, he said $750 million came from voluntary surrender by the family while $570 million was recovered from Switzerland.

"$380 million was recovered from Jersey and $150 million, which was the Ajaokuta Steel plant debt, was recovered from the UK," he added.

He explained that asset recovery involves criminal and civil mechanisms, mutual legal assistance in criminal proceedings, international enforcement of confiscation orders, civil forfeiture, and private civil proceedings.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article04

Jun 1, 2009, 05:38 PM
15 BILLION NAIRA SCAM: Transcorp's Iseghohi, others face 32-count charge of corruption

A thirty two-count charge has been pressed against Thomas Iseghohi, group managing director of Transcorp, and other two officials of the company by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) at an Abuja High Court over an alleged N15 billion scam rocking the firm. Mike Okoli, the company's deputy general manager, and Mohammed Buba, company secretary, were also joined in the suit bordering on embezzlement and money laundering, BusinessDay gathered.

The three executives are being accused of allegedly misappropriating the company's funds totalling over N15 billion through indiscriminate award of contracts and payment of various suspicious fees.
Three of them were accused of using different companies owned by their friends and cronies, mostly based in the United States, as fronts to siphon the company's monies by inflating and duplicating the value for consultancy projects, contracts as well as for various services.

They have been in EFCC's custody since their arrest last week and a source said they may be arraigned tomorrow.
Last week, it was reported that the officials had allegedly used some companies, including Global Employment Solutions Incorporated (GESI), Lansak International Limited and Global Information Technology Incorporated to perfect the alleged fraudulent deals.

Other companies listed were Anchor Pointe Integrated Limited, Asasa Enterprise Nigeria Limited, Hamattan Ventures and Centre Spread FCB among others.
It would be recalled that the executives were first arrested by the State Security Service (SSS) who gave the EFCC an intelligence report that led to their re-arrest by the commission.

Iseghohi was alleged to have siphoned about $1.2 million from the company's coffers into his personal account in the United States between July 2007 and May 2008. Business Day learnt that Lansak Limited was also allegedly paid N64 million as rentals for an office space which was never used while Asasa Enterprises received N35 million for suspicious consultancy services.
But the big one was a whopping $108 million monthly retainership allegedly paid to one of the companies, Anchor Pointe, to manage Transcorp's oil block between 2007 and date.

The executives were also said to have used a US-based company, Global Information Technology Incorporated, to siphon $100,000 towards the end of last year to investigate a fire incident at NITEL office, Saka Tinubu, Lagos apart from other monies paid to the company for other services.
Business Day further learnt that another of their companies, Hamattan Ventures, was paid about $500,000 just for organising meetings for Iseghohi outside the country while the Transcorp boss paid Centre Spread FCB over N233 million between May 2007 and September 2008 and another N205 million as legal fees within the period.

When contacted, Femi Babafemi, EFCC spokesman, said the accused persons are in EFCC custody but could but said he did not have details on the issue yet.

LINK: http://www.businessdayonline.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2898:transcorps-iseghohi-others-face-32-count-charge-of-corruption&catid=1:latest-news&Itemid=18

Jun 1, 2009, 05:51 PM
EFCC arrests NCC boss Ndukwe over N5.4b licences

Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) boss Ernest Ndukwe was quizzed yesterday by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over the award of four slots of 2.3GHZ spectrum at about N5.4billion

Each slot or licence was awarded at N1.368billion.

Gigahertz, generally abbreviated GHz, refers to frequencies in the billions of cycles per second range.

According to www.wise-geek.com, "GHz is commonly used when discussing computer performance or radio frequencies". "In radio communications, GHz is used to define bands of the electromagnetic spectrum. Different bands will be assigned different uses. S-Band, for example, is a band of spectrum between 2 and 4 GHz.

"Common technologies, such as Bluetooth wireless internet (Wifi)) and cordless telephones, operate in the S-Band. L-Band, between 1 and 2 GHz, is used for satellite communications and Global Positioning Systems, or GPS. Other notable bands in the GHz range include Ku and Ka, used by satellites as well as by police radar guns."

Ndukwe was arrested in his office yesterday afternoon after several weeks of covert probe of allegations against him.

It was gathered that shortly after his arrest, Ndukwe was taken to the Operations Department of the EFCC for interrogation.

As at press time, the NCC Vice-Chairman was still being grilled. There were indications that he might be detained overnight.

A source, who spoke in confidence, gave four reasons for Ndukwe's arrest.

He said: "One of the issues against the suspect is that he offered four slots of 2.3GHZ spectrum to some applicants without due process at N1.368billion per slot

"Mobitel was one of the companies that could raise that amount in five days. And the same Mobitel had earlier been granted a waiver of N243milion out of outstanding indebtedness of N246million, leaving the company to pay only N3million.

"We are also probing an allegation that Ndukwe has been spending funds beyond budget limit approved for him as the head of the NCC.

"Another issue against the suspect is that he has been collecting pension, which is meant only for the employees of the NCC.

"Ndukwe is also accused of misleading the Federal Government over award of contracts for Community Information Centres. He was said to have deceived the government that the land for these centres are available, whereas information shows that in most of the states, especially in the South-East, there was no land allocation for the projects, which are to be completed on June 3, 2009."

Contacted, the Head of Media and Publicity of the EFCC, Mr. Femi Babafemi, said: "I am aware that Engr. Ernest Ndukwe is before a team of investigators who are interacting with him on some allegations against him."

The Head Public Affairs of the NCC, Mr. Reuben Mouka, said: "I am not aware of Engr. Ndukwe's arrest but I know that he was invited by the EFCC. I cannot comment on what he was invited for but he is already on his way to the office. We will issue a statement later tonight."

LINK: http://thenationonlineng.net/web/articles/3952/1/EFCC-arrests-NCC-boss-Ndukwe-over-N54b-licences/Page1.html

Jun 4, 2009, 07:43 PM
Halliburton: Etete, Obaseki Detained Over $180m Bribe

By Rotimi Akinwumi, Correspondent, Abuja

Dan Etete and Gaius Obaseki are being detained over the $180 million Halliburton bribe saga by the Presidential Investigation Committee headed by Police Inspector General, Mike Okiro.

Etete, former Petroleum Minister; and Obaseki, former Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Group Managing Director, were reportedly held on Wednesday after they were questioned for over nine hours in Abuja.

It was learnt that the panel has narrowed the suspects to seven, and would invite other big shots in the oil industry to provide more information before it rounds off sittings in the next two weeks.

Okiro and his team are still continuing efforts to get Jeffrey Tessler, a Briton fingered as a principal actor in the scandal, to testify.

President Umaru Yar'Adua gave the Committee permission to enlist the help of INTERPOL to arrest Tessler and bring him to Nigeria to answer questions on the illegal deal.

He has also extended the mandate given to the security agency to monitor those interviewed as well as their collaborators.

It was learnt that some Asian countries have been contacted, along with the United Kingdom and the United States to assist Nigeria with the list of companies indicted over the scandal, with the aim of unraveling the names and bank details of their Nigerian henchmen.

The panel last week ordered all those who have appeared before it to deposit their passports with it, so as to prevent them from running away from the country.

It is waiting for a former Head of State allegedly named in the scandal who is out of the country for medical treatment.

Federal Attorney General and Justice Minister, Mike Aondoakaa, confirmed in April the probe of a secret bank account in Switzerland where $150 million from the bribe money belonging to Nigerian officials is lodged.

Up to $30 million of the total $180 million is said to have been remitted to Nigeria, although Aondoakaa did not confirm this.

But he said American officials disclosed the existence of the secret account to him during his visit to Washington, which has prosecuted American collaborators in the scam involving Abuja officials in exchange for contracts.

"We have discovered that $150 million of the bribe money is in Zurich. That is the first shocking discovery. The entire money is $180 million, but $150 million is already trapped in Zurich," he said in Abuja.

The government is yet to ascertain those who own the money, Aondoakaa added.

However, Information and Communications Minister, Dora Akunyili, promised in April that the government will publish the names of those involved once it gets the information from the U.S. Government.

She said Abuja has taken steps to ensure that indicted Nigerians are prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article01

Jun 4, 2009, 07:52 PM
Reps Summon NPA Chiefs Over Non-remittance Of N70b

It was revealed in Abuja on Wednesday that the Nigeria Port Authority (NPA) has failed to remit over N70 billion into the Federation Account in the past ten years.
The discovery was made by Director General, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Ifeko Omogui.

The revelation forced the House of Representatives

to summon the management of NPA to appear before its Committee on Public Account to explain the alleged default.

The discovery was made during an interactive session with Ifeko.

Omogui disclosed this during an interactive session between management team of the FIRS and Nigerian Investment Promotion Council (NIPC) on the indiscriminate grant of 'pioneer waivers to major telecommunication operators'.

Usman Adamu, Chairman, House Committee on Public Account, also queried the five years pioneer status granted the major telecommunication service providers operating in the country.

The committee disclosed that over N200 billion has been lost over the past five years due to waivers granted to the telecoms operators, adding that the money meant much to the country in the face of the present global economic melt down.
Adamu, who was represented by Labaran Dambatta, Deputy Chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, asked the FIRS boss to provide detail report on the N10 billion outstanding revenues from John Holt, N1 billion from Shell Petroleum Development Commission (SPDC) and $500 million from Chevron Petroleum Company.

Members of the committee who queried the decision of Federal Government to grant the 'pioneer waivers' to major operators, namely MTN, Globacom and Zain, noted that the waiver is only applicable to manufacturing companies coming into the country.

He said "they (telecoms operators) paid N17 billion in the years 2007 but for the first five years they were not paying any tax.
"It was not their fault but because they were granted the pioneer status and that pioneer status does not allow them to pay tax, but that was a very big mistake on the part of whomever really who approved that."

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/head/article05

Jun 4, 2009, 08:01 PM
Reps Probe $43m Oil Deals

By Otei Oham and Sule Lazarus, Abuja

House of Representatives Committee on Public Procurement on Wednesday began investigations into the controversial award of $43 million contract for the supply of remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) by oil firm, Total Upstream Nigeria Limited (TUPNI), to Oceaneering International AG of Switzerland contrary to approval given by the board of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

Acting on a petition from Messrs Tilone Nigeria Limited to the

committee chaired by Yusuf Tuggar (PDP, Bauchi), the lawmakers summoned the management of TUPNI, NNPC as well as the petitioner to appear before them.

TUPNI, however, refused to show up thereby drawing the ire of the committee members who threatened to invoke their constitutional powers to compel the firm to appear before them.

The committee also threatened to slam a heavy fine on the company for failure to honour

the summons.

Meanwhile, Managing Director of Tilone, Stanford Tassie, has claimed that his company actually bided for the contract in 2006 and won it ahead of Oceaneering but that TUPNI went on to award it to the latter in defiance of NNPC's board directives.

He told the committee that his original bid was falsified by TUPNI so that the contract could be awarded to a foreign company in contradiction to the Federal Government's local contents initiatives

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/head/article04

Jun 9, 2009, 07:14 AM
From the few cases already tallied here, this is a very GROSS under-estimate...

Govs, ministers, MPs steal N285bn - EFCC

Amidst rising poverty and failed infrastructure, former governors, ministers, senators and other categories of public servants allegedly swindled Nigerians of about N285.4 billion in 10 years of the return to civil rule.

Of the amount, reported loot by ex-governors, ministers and senators amounted to over N102 billion.

Other public officers including members of the House of Representatives, political party officials, board members, civil servants and others from the private sector allegedly looted public money amounting to over N183 billion.

However, of the amount only a paltry N50bn has been recovered by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

These were the highlights of a media parley yesterday in Abuja to mark the first year in office of Mrs. Farida Waziri as Chairman of the commission.

Speaking at the event, Waziri revealed her frustration in prosecuting corruption cases while frowning at the slow pace of litigation in the country though she said the commission had achieved conviction in 65 corruption cases.

A breakdown of the looted funds indicated that former governors and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) stalwarts formed the bulk of heavy looting.

According to EFCC, trial of the former governors was at different stages of prosecution but hampered by slow pace of the judicial process and alleged connivance between the accused and the judicial officers, especially, lawyers to frustrate trial.

A document entitled "On-going high profile cases' gave details of the alleged looting indication that former Gov. Ayo Fayose is facing trial for allegedly looting N1.2 billion from the coffers of Ekiti state.

The document also indicated that former deputy National Vice-Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Chief Olabode George allegedly swindled government of N100 billion while serving as Chairmnan of the Board of Nigerian Ports authority (NPA).

Others include; Saminu Turaki (N36 billion); Orji Uzor Kalu (N5 billion); Chimaroke Nnamani (N5.3bn); Michael Botmang (N1.5 bn); Prof Babalola Borishade (N5.6bn); Boni haruna (N93million); Femi Fani-Kayode (N250million); Rasheed Ladoja (N6bn); Prof Adenike Grange (N300m); Sen. Iyabo Obasanjo-Bello (N10m) and Jolly Nyame (N180m).

Also on the list are Sen. Nichola Ugbane, Hon. Ndudi Elumelu and others (N6.2billion); Four Managers of Zenith Bank Plc (N3.6billion); Molkat Mutfwang and others (N636m); Dr. Ransome Owan and others (N1.5billion); Tom Iseghoghi and others of Transcorp (N15 billion); Kenny Martins (N7.7billion); Patrick Fernandez, an Indian businessman (N32billion); Eider George, an Australian businessman (N5.6billion); Nyeson Wike, Chief of Staff to Governor Rotimi Amechi of Rivers State (N4.6 billion) and Roland Iyayi, a former Managing Director of FAAN (N5.6billion).

Waziri also disclosed that the list of former governors who had looted their state treasuries will only increase as the commission is tying up loose ends in the cases involving Bola Tinubu of Lagos State and Peter Odili of Rivers state.

On Odili, the EFCC boss said legal steps have been taken to seek an invalidation of the restrictive injunction secured by him against arrest and prosecution by the commission.

She noted that the commission had secured the services of a Senior Advocate of Nigeria to challenge the order and seek its lifting so as to pave way for his arrest and prosecution.

Commenting on her activities in office in the past one year, Mrs. Waziri said she has been able to develop a new anti-crime software, EagleClaw, which according to her would change the face of the war on cyber crime in the country.

She said: "Project EagleClaw is software that sniffs out all fraudulent e-mails and monitors them with the option of shutting down such mails. This means that when fully deployed, all 419 mails emanating from Nigeria will either be monitored or be shut down."

The EFCC boss also said that the deployment of GoAML and GoCase softwares, which had been redundant, helped the commission in tracing a money laundering case involving officials of Zenith Bank Plc.

Expressing confidence in the future of anti corruption war in the country, Mrs. Waziri called on Nigerians to join the fight so as to enable the country achieve appreciable reduction in the level of official corruption even as she said her greatest frustration comes from the courts.

She noted however that the commission had initiated dialogue with leadership of the judiciary and the bar association to seek ways of enhancing litigation so as to achieve more results.

LINK: http://www.champion-newspapers.com/news/article_1.htm

Jun 9, 2009, 07:35 AM

You are doing a wonderful job there. Your compendium says it all. Imagine the collosal corruption cases so far listed. Yet we carry on as if all is well.

I suggest that you back-up your list in so many ways. You may need them later and discover that they're not here.

Well done...

Jun 14, 2009, 02:26 AM

NNPC failed to remit N368bn in 9 years; Oil lifting granted companies without due process - Monies paid to non-existent companies - NNPC paid self $50.2 million ‘performance balance' - House of Reps committee probe reveals

THE Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) failed to remit N368 billion to the Federation Account between 1999 and 2008, a House of Representatives committee probing the corporation was told on Thursday.

An accounting firm, was, however, blamed by the ad hoc committee for allegedly colluding with top officials of the NNPC by failing to properly scrutinise the NNPC account to prevent the fraud.

The House, therefore, directed the accounting firm to appear before the probe panel at its next sitting to testify on the whereabouts of the sum said to be connected with deals with some oil companies which benefitted from oil importation during the years under review.

The committee equally frowned on the allocation of 1,500,000 metric tonnes of Low Pour Fuel Oil (LPFO) to four indigenous oil companies by the NNPC between September 2002 and February 2003 at hugely discounted prices, which it noted, would have fetched the Federal Government N17 billion.

The companies were said to have got the allocation to lift the LPFO, used mainly for industrial purposes, without due process while they were alleged to have defrauded the country to the tune of N17 billion by selling the product at the international market after buying the same from NNPC at subsidised rate.

The probe panel asked the NNPC to explain reasons behind its resolve to pay the $25.6 million to Texaco Oil as performance balance for the period of 1999 and 2005, whereas the oil company was never one of its joint venture partners.

It equally queried the NNPC for paying cash call totalling $5.7 million in 2000, and $11.2 million in 2002 to Palm Ocean Oil, whereas the oil company did not operate as its joint venture partner within the period.

The committee also asked the NNPC to explain reason it paid $31.6 million to a company known as NNPC Crude Oil and Gas, also as performance balance in 2002, contending that since no such company existed, the corporation, for no reason, deliberately paid itself the money.

The committee also accused NNPC of paying $50.2 million to itself in 2008 as performance balance for 2002 and 2005, a disclosure which it said was made by the Group Managing Director of the company, Abdullahi Barkindo, who had earlier given his testimony.

The NNPC in 2008, according to the committee, listed six oil companies as those it would want to work with, in a joint venture arrangement, but later came up with eight companies to which it eventually made scheduled payment of transaction, alleging that the extra two companies, NPDC and NAPIC, did not deserve to receive any payment from the corporation.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/jun/12/611.html

Jul 5, 2009, 06:50 PM
N5b Constituency Project: EFCC Quizzes Rivers Speaker, 27 Members

Speaker Tonye Harry and his Majority Leader, Chidi Lloyd are among 28 members of the Rivers State House of Assembly who had been interrogated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in connection with the mismanagement of about N5billion constituency project fund.

A reliable source within the anti-corruption commission disclosed at the weekend that the money was released to the lawmakers as constituency project fund by the executive, but they allegedly misappropriated it.

Although there were insinuations that governor Rotimi Amaechi may have reported the matter to the EFCC, his media adviser, David Iyofor told Sunday Independent on Saturday that it was not true. "You know that that cannot be true and you also know that the Legislature is an independent entity," he said.

Regarding the interrogation of the lawmakers, Iyofor maintained that he was not competent to speak on matters affecting the Assembly which he said, "is completely independent of the Executive."

But according to our source, the N5 billion was released to the lawmakers but they have failed to carry out the projects for which it was released.

Sunday Independent gathered that rather than the lawmakers execute the projects, some of them turned themselves to contractors while others were said to have completely abandoned the projects.

"They allegedly collected the money without executing the projects for which it was meant," an EFCC official said, adding that, "the lawmakers also made themselves the contractors where the projects are executed at all."

"That way, the few projects they have carried out are of sub-standard and cannot account for the huge amount of money released for them," he said.

On how the EFCC came about the matter, our source said it was the result of the efforts of the Commission's Intelligent Unit which had learnt to embark on secret, but independent inquiries around government ministries, departments and agencies as well as in the states nationwide.

Our source said that on Monday, June 29, the Speaker and the Majority Leader were quizzed extensively by operatives of the EFCC while the next day, Tuesday, June 30, 12 other members took their turns.

Sunday Independent also gathered that on Wednesday, July 1, 13 other members were interrogated while one member took his turn on Friday, July 3.

The source who said the commission is still verifying the projects, however, added that out of 32 members of the Rivers State Assembly, 28 have been so far quizzed while two are abroad on course and two others indisposed.

The EFCC Head of Media and Publicity, Femi Babafemi confirmed the interrogation of the lawmakers as well as the on going investigation into the matter.

Efforts to speak with the Speaker on Saturday yielded little result as his cell phone did not go through. He also did not respond to a text message sent to him by Sunday Independent at press time.

Meanwhile, indications emerged at the weekend that some EFCC operatives are allegedly demanding gratification from the contractors whose accounts were frozen in respect of the sharp practices that characterised the execution of the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) projects which had landed some National Assembly members as well as some officials of the REA into trouble.

Feelers at the weekend indicated that some of the EFCC operatives are allegedly asking the desperate contractors for N150, 000 to enable them "unlock" their accounts in the words of one of the contractors.

Although the accounts were frozen on the orders of the court, some of the EFCC operatives, it was alleged, are hoping that if the contractors pay the money, reports that would be favourable to them would be written.

But Babafemi had dismissed the claim, saying there was nothing like that. He said there are so many people faking EFCC operatives and that the Commission would gladly work with any contractor willing to help the EFCC authority expose any staff who drags the name of the Commission in the mud.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article02

Jul 6, 2009, 03:14 PM
Nigerian youths now trafficked abroad for homosexual activities
Clement Idoko, Abuja
Saturday, July 4, 2009
A new dimension has been introduced into the illicit business of human trafficking, as Nigerian male children below the age of 18 are now the targets of the traffickers for homosexuality in Europe.

The National Agency for Prohibition of Traffic in Persons and other Related Matters (NAPTIP) dropped the hint in Abuja at the 15th edition of the agency’s National Stakeholders Consultative Forum on Anti-Human Trafficking, warning parents to be cautious of overtures by those claiming to be relations wanting to travel with their children.

The director of investigation of the agency, Mr. Mohammed Babandede, who made the revelation, equally expressed worries at the increasing rate of the number of female victims.

In recognition of the frantic efforts of the agency and the Nigerian government at curbing the menace, the United States of American Human Trafficking rating agency, in its 2009 report, elevated Nigeria from Tier 2 to Tier 1; an indication of a substantial compliance with minimum standards to the elimination of trafficking in persons, including adequate legislation.

But the agency said it was not going to be consumed in the euphoria of the rating, insisting that it had onerous task of working towards a total annihilation of the network of these criminals, reiterating they develop new sophisticated methods of carrying out their illicit trade including voodoo of their victims.

Babandede disclosed further that intelligent report gathered by the agency revealed that there was the high demand for the male children below the age of 18 years in the Netherlands, this time not for hard labour, but for homosexuality.

The Executive Secretary of the anti-trafficking agency, Mr. Simon Egede, called on the stakeholders to be united in the efforts to fight against the menace, saying to win the war against the criminals required effective collaboration, considering the sophistication in the operation of the cartel.

Jul 6, 2009, 03:23 PM

Revealed: How Traditional rulers are aiding kidnapping in Abia
By Anayo Okoli
Saturday, July 4, 2009
For about two years now, Abia State has been infested with a serious problem that has given both the government and the entire people sleepless nights. That single problem is kidnaping.

This problem started like a child’s play but has rapidly grown into a big problem, in fact, a monster that seems to have so far defied solution. The state government has put in a lot of resources to fight this, yet it looks like nothing is happening.

The problem continues, increasingly, assuming more dangerous dimension every passing day. Many Abians and non_Abians living in the state have lost their lives in the hands of these deadly hoodlums, who not only extort money from the people through demand for ransom, but also kill at will .

Government and security agencies efforts at fighting this menace have so far not paid much dividend.

However, recent development in the state has shown that the efforts have not paid off simply because the perpetrators are within and close to government and the grassroots; that is the involvement of traditional rulers in the illicit, criminal and bloody lucrative business.

It sounds funny and unbelievable that traditional rulers would be involved in the business of kidnaping in the state, but it was real.

Last week’s sack of two traditional rulers by Governor Theodore Orji on account of their alleged involvement in kidnapping showed how deep the problem is. The sacked traditional rulers are Eze Rueben Nwaorgu of Ihe-Iyi autonomous community in Ugwunagbo council area and Eze Emmanuel Oforji of Isi-Obehie autonomous community in Ukwa West council. They were alleged to be aiding and abetting kidnapping.

Their alleged involvement has confirmed suspicion by both the government and the people that the business of kidnapping has the backing of some well placed people, including some unscrupulous traditional rulers and perhaps other prominent members of the society. Little wonder why these hoodlums carry out the criminal acts with impunity, because they have the backing of powerful individuals.

Government to be blamed

In the case of Abia State the government has some substantial share of blame to bear on the activities of some unscrupulous royal fathers.

The government had in the past, perhaps in a bid to score cheap political points, created numerous autonomous communities and appointed traditional rulers, many of them known 419ers and people of questionable character, in fact charlatans. Some of these Ezes( traditional rulers) are today causing the society move harm than good.

Traditional rulers in Igbo land are revered and respected because of their sincerity and uprightness, people with credibility. But government in a fast lane to gain political influence had changed this. In fact, some of the appointments are till today causing problems in some communities that protested abinito the appointment of some the Ezes due to their past records.

In his effort to fight crime, especially kidnapping, and in realization of the role royal fathers supposed to play in providing security in their communities, Governor Orji had called several meetings with where he preached and even issued threats against Ezes who harbour criminals, especially kidnappers, which has caused the government more embarrassment than any other problems.

Eze’s suspect themselves

In one of the meetings held recently, shortly before the sack of the two Ezes, the Governor alleged that some royal fathers were alleged to be harbouring criminals, especially kidnappers in their domain. One of the prominent monarchs in the state, octogenarian Eze Isaac Ikonne of Aba, challenged him to call the names of such Ezes. He challenged the governor to mention his name if he is involved in the criminal act, that he should not spare any of them.

Eze Ikonne’s even went the extra mile to narrate before the gathering how a fellow Eze sent him a threatening text message when he challenged the said Eze on alleged criminal activities. The monarch even promised to show the text message to the governor if need be.

Ezes are also targets of kidnappers

Ironically, royal fathers have been targets of these kidnappers. An Eze and his wife were killed when their palace in Abala community is Obingwa council area was attacked and set on fire. The slain Eze was said to be against crime in his domain.

Another royal father in Osisioma council area was recently reportedly kidnapped and killed. It therefore becomes a big puzzle why traditional rulers should be reluctant to fight kidnapping when any of them could be a victim.

Government weilds the big stick

However, shortly after the last meeting with the monarchs, Governor Theodore Orji took a drastic action when he dethroned the two Ezes, for their alleged involvement in criminal activities. According to the government, the sacked Ezes constituted a clog in its crime fighting programme.

Orji warned that more Ezes may be sacked as currently some royal fathers are being investigated on their alleged criminal activities, and if food culpable will be dethroned. This goes to show that many more traditional rulers are involved in these criminal acts.

A situation where a traditional ruler, hold in high esteem and who ought to be a custodian of peace, love and security in his community, offers his palace as a detention camp for kidnapped victims, is sad and condemnable.

The government should not only dethrone such Eze but should go ahead to try him in line with the state law on kidnapping which prescribes death for offenders. Only such action will tell the Ezes that the game is actually over. Sacking and replacing them is not enough.

Other areas to look at

In its aggressive fight against criminals, especially kidnapping, government should beam its searchlight on some novel riche, the “over_night millionaires”, and some top security operatives, especially in the police force. Perhaps more good results could be achieved. Again, in this all_important fight, Abia State Government should also turn attention to the activities of drug peddlers and barons.

They exist in the state, especially in Aba, the commercial capital of the state. This much was confirmed by the state command of NDLEA. The state commander of the agency, Mrs. Florence Dan –Archibong, indeed linked the upsurge in violent crime such as armed robbery and kidnapping in the state to high consumption and trafficking of hard drugs.

Linking high crime rate in the state to high hard drug consumption and trafficking, NDLEA said: “You are aware that Abia State is admired for its commerce and great entrepreneurs that have contributed significantly to the economy of our country.

On the other hand, Abia State has acquired the notoriety as the highest hard drug consuming and trafficking State East of the Niger. The barons have ensured the ready availability of hard drugs not only in Abia but also in the five neighbouring States of Imo, Ebonyi, Akwa Ibom, Rivers, Cross River and Bayelsa.

This has led to the upsurge in violent crimes such as armed robbery and kidnapping in the State. Cocaine and Heroin have become common drugs of abuse with arrest and seizure recorded in all the Local Government Areas of the State. New drug joints are springing up everyday where criminal activities are planned, perfected and executed.

Some streets in Aba such as York and Park have turned into no_go area for decent law abiding residents of Aba as unscrupulous miscreants have turned them into ghettos and haven for hard drugs.

“Our citadels of higher learning in the State are gradually been taken over by the drug scourge. Even the Secondary school students and primary school pupils are not left out, as their schools are turned into drug joints everyday”. NDLEA lamented.

However, many of the royal fathers are worried over the involvement of their colleagues in crimes.

Chairman of Abia State traditional rulers council, Eze Hope Onuigbo has condemned it and has always called on his colleagues to assist the government in the fight against crimes. He has always reminded them of their role as the chief security officers in their domain.

Also, Eze John Akamiro had long before the government began to act mobilized his fellow Ezes in the old Bende area of the state, to fight against kidnapping. He led a delegation of royal fathers from the area to visit some prominent Ezes from Ngwa land to discuss the matter.

Much as these efforts by government and other people will assist, the public are waiting to see when the kidnap suspects will be tried and punished in accordance with the law on kidnapping.

The state police command, almost on weekly basis, announce the arrest of a number of kidnap suspects, why none has been tried and convicted is the big the question.

Until this is done the kidnappers will believe that government is just joking.

Jul 10, 2009, 06:56 PM
Bode George, Kalu, Ladoja, Dariye, 52 others looted N243bn -EFCC

THE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has released the names of 56 Nigerians it alleged collectively removed over N243 billion from the nation’s treasury.

From left-top, Bode George, Saminu Turaki, kenny Martins Chimaroke Nnamani, Orji Uzor Kalu and Iyabo Obasanjo.

The names, some of which the EFCC Chairman, Mrs. Farida Waziri, referred to as politically revered people in the international community, were contained in a list handed over to the leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), as the EFCC and NLC commenced their strategic partnership to intensify the fight against corruption in the country.

The list contained names of well-known politicians, former governors, ministers, permanent secretaries, civil servants, chairmen and members of parastatal agencies, local government chairmen, members of the House of Representatives and senators.

The EFCC boss had, on Tuesday, visited the Labour House, Abuja, where she briefed the NLC leadership led by its president, Comrade Abdulwaheed Omar, and revealed that a strategic meeting would soon be held with NLC to formally signal the beginning of their new partnership.

Lending credence to the statement by Mrs. Waziri, during the meeting, that some Nigerians were stealing in billions, the money stolen ranged from N10 million to N100 billion.

According to the list, only eight of the suspects allegedly stole in millions; 17 of them were alleged, by the EFCC, to have stolen in billions, while the amounts allegedly stolen by others were not specified.

Tagged “ongoing high profile cases” by the commission, all the listed cases are already in court in the different parts of the country. While 11 were instituted and handed over by the former EFCC chairman, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, the present chairman, Mrs. Wazri, commenced 22 of the cases.

The 56 alleged looters were taken to court under 33 high-profile cases and 33 of them have been granted bail by the court under various circumstances, while 19 were remanded in prison custody.

Two of them have been convicted; charges have been filed against one but the suspect has refused to put in appearance in court, while court judgment is currently under review in one of the cases.

Among the high-profile cases in which the suspects have been granted bail are: former governors of Jigawa State, Saminu Turaki, N36 billion; Joshua Dariye (Plateau) amount not stated; Orji Uzor Kalu (Abia), N5 billion; Rasheed Ladoja (Oyo), N6 billion; Jolly Nyame (Taraba), N180 million; Chimaroke Nnamani (Enugu), N5.3 billion; Boni Haruna (Adamawa), N93 million and Michael Botmang, (acting governor, Plateau) N1. 5 billion.

The EFCC also listed the cases involving a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain, Chief Bode George, N100 billion; an Indian businessman, Patrick Fernandez, N32 billion; former Managing Director of FAAN, Roland Iyayi, N5.6 billion; former Minister of Aviation, Professor Babalola Borishade, N5.6 billion; an Austrian businessman, Eider George, N5.6 billion; and Kenny Martins of Police Equipment Fund (PEF), N7.7 billion.

Also on the list are: Tom Isegholi, Mohammed Buba, and Mike Okoli for the Transcorp Plc., N15 billion; Senator Nicholas Ugbane and nine other members of the House of Representatives, N5.2 billion; Iyabo Obasanjo, N10 million; serving Chief of Staff to Rivers State Governor, Nyeson Wike, N4.7 billion; former Aviation Minister Femi-Fani-Kayode, N250 million; four senior Zenith Bank managers, N3.6 billion; Molkat Mutfwang and three others, N636 million; Dr. Ransome Owan and six others, N1.5 billion; a retired Permanent Secretary, Dr. Albert Ikomi, N43 million, and chairman, Taraba State Civil Service Commission, Dr. Yuguda Manu, N17.5 million.

1. Bode George N100 billion

2. Saminu Turaki N36 billion

3. Patrick Fernandez N32 billion

4. Tom Isegholi, Mohammed Buba

and Mike Okoli (for The Transcorp Plc) N15 billion

5. Kenny Martins N7.7 billion

6. Rasheed Ladoja N6 billion

7. Roland Iyayi N5.6 billion

8. Babalola Borishade N5.6 billion

9. Eider George N5.6 billion

10. Chimaroke Nnamani N5.3 billion

11. Senator Nicholas Ugbane and nine other members of the House

of Representatives N5.2 billion

12. Orji Uzor Kalu N5 billion

13. Nyeson Wike N4.7 billion

14. 4 senior Zenith Bank Managers N3.6 billion

15. Michael Botmang N1.5 billion

16. Ransome Owan and 6 others N1.5 billion

17. Molkat Mutfwang and 3 others N636 million

18. Femi-Fani-Kayode N250 million

19. Jolly Nyame N180 million

20. Boni Haruna N93 million

21. Dr. Albert Ikomi N43 million

22. Dr. Yuguda Manu N17.5 million

23. Iyabo Obasanjo N10 million

24. Joshua Dariye (amount not stated)

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/jul/10/605.html

Jul 10, 2009, 07:02 PM
Alamieyeseigha loot: EFCC hands over N44.5bn to Bayelsa

Assets whose worth is estimated at about N44,541,702,029.00, including a high brow hotel in Abuja, were yesterday handed over to the Bayelsa State government by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC). They were part of the loot recovered by the commission from former governor of the state, Chief DSP Alamieyeseigha, who was jailed for corrupt practices.

The recovered items include Chelsea Hotel located at the Central Area of Abuja, valued at over N2.8 billion in 2007, and another property located at No. 2, Marscibit Street, off Aminu Kano Crescent, Wuse II, Abuja, valued N210,000,000.

Other assets recovered from the former governor and sold include the ones worth N3,128,230,294.83 in Nigeria, $441,000 in the United States of America, 7,000 Euro and 2000 pounds across Europe.

Speaking at the handing over ceremony held within the premises of Chelsea Hotel, Abuja, EFCC Chairman, Mrs. Farida Waziri, said the return of the recovered assets was as a result of painstaking investigation and successful prosecution of the erstwhile governor for abuse of office, corruption and money laundering.

"This is a solemn occasion. There is indeed nothing to celebrate, rather, it is time for deep reflection. This is because the events that culminated in this ceremony today are rooted in serious and grave betrayal of public trust of a high ranking public officer, the governor of a state, Chief DSP Alamieyeseigha, former Governor of Bayelsa State. The assets, which we are returning today are as a result of painstaking investigation and successful prosecution of the erstwhile governor for abuse of office, corruption and money laundering. He was charged, tried, convicted and sentenced by the Federal High Court, Lagos in 2007 and assets worth billions of naira forfeited to the Bayelsa State Government.

"The Commission gathered and sold the assets in Nigeria. The total realised N3,128,230,294.83, $441,000 million, 7,000.00 euros, and 2,000.00 pounds. Besides the money, we are handing over two prime forfeited properties, Chelsea Hotel located in the Central Area of Abuja, valued at over N2.8 billion in 2007, and No. 2, Marscibit Street, off Aminu Kano Crescent, Wuse II, Abuja, valued N210,000,000. We have instructed Diya Fatimilehim & Co., former managers of the hotel to provide you with detailed inventory of assets of the hotel," Waziri said.

Waziri said the money had been remitted to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), in accordance with the law, for onward delivery to the government of Bayelsa State as ordered by the court. She also called on the state government to liaise with the office of the Accountant-General of the Federation to obtain payment.

She said the foreign components of the assets were still in the process of being retrieved with the assistance of the British government and that once that process was completed, the assets would be returned as well to the state government.

"Let me reiterate that these assets were traced, frozen, managed, and finally forfeited at great cost and expense to the Federal Government. Even as the Federal Government is not asking for a refund of the cost, the government of Bayelsa has a responsibility and obligation to utilise the funds transparently and judiciously. It is international best practice to have a utilisation programme for the funds now returned. The Bayelsa State Government is therefore called upon to develop a plan with verifiable projects for use of the funds," she said.

Bayelsa State Governor, Mr Timipre Sylva, while receiving the assets, promised to judiciously use the money and the assets.

"I must say categorically that EFCC is working and I want to thank you all for doing the right thing for us. I will use the money to build a massive plaza, which I will call Transparency Plaza in the midst of Yenagoa Business District. We are transparent and believe so much in dealing with the people in a transparent form. That is why we have a live phone-in programme every Wednesday where everyone is free to call and discuss how the state would go forward with me," the governor said.

Alamieyeseigha was governor of Bayelsa between 1999 and 2005 when he was impeached after he had been arrested and charged in Britain for money laundary offences. He, however, jumped bail and returned to Nigeria.

After his impeachment, he was arrested and tried at a Federal High Court in Lagos and jailed for six months. The court equally ordered that the assets which he illegally acquired from proceeds of corrupt practices and money laundering should be forfeited and returned to the Bayelsa State government .

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/jul/10/220.html

Jul 10, 2009, 07:13 PM
Bode George, Kalu, Ladoja, Dariye, 52 others looted N243bn -EFCC


This is utter RUBBISH! Mrs Farida Waziri has lost 10 points from my rating of her. The big looters are in Abuja and most of them are Alhajis. I did not see their names there.

Where are the looters of NNPC, PTDF, DPR, Works, Agric, NEPA, NITEL,Halliburton, Julius Berger, Siemens, FIRS, Nigeria Customs, Power and Steel, State House, Ecological fund, all the federal Ministries and agencies, etc, etc, etc...Where are the governors of the North west and North East? Is Farida giving them a clean bill of health? Who is the fool out there that believes her?

Felix, please check through your compilation so far and see if this list is in any way reflective of the true Federal character of corruption. We must resist the temptation to accept the corrupt tendency of potraying corruption as southern malaise. No, it is not. While, I accept that it cuts accross tribes and region, Northern Nigeria (MOSLEM northern Nigeria that is) is the undisputed champion of Public sector corruption in Nigeria.

We must do all within our powers to reject this latest attempt at false labelling. Ribadu did it and got away with it. We must not allow Farida Waziri to continue along the same line.

Shine your eyes everyone...

Jul 10, 2009, 07:19 PM
Alamieyeseigha loot: EFCC hands over N44.5bn to Bayelsa

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/jul/10/220.html


Where was the money kept all these while? At what rate of interest? Did EFCC account for the interest on the funds? Can anyone close to TI ask them to tell the world how much interest that accrued on these funds?

The answer will end the false pretences of past and present anti-corruption chiefs.

Can we ask...?

Jul 10, 2009, 07:45 PM

This is utter RUBBISH! Mrs Farida Waziri has lost 10 points from my rating of her. The big looters are in Abuja and most of them are Alhajis. I did not see their names there.

Where are the looters of NNPC, PTDF, DPR, Works, Agric, NEPA, NITEL,Halliburton, Julius Berger, Siemens, FIRS, Nigeria Customs, Power and Steel, State House, Ecological fund, all the federal Ministries and agencies, etc, etc, etc...Where are the governors of the North west and North East? Is Farida giving them a clean bill of health? Who is the fool out there that believes her?

Felix, please check through your compilation so far and see if this list is in any way reflective of the true Federal character of corruption. We must resist the temptation to accept the corrupt tendency of potraying corruption as southern malaise. No, it is not. While, I accept that it cuts accross tribes and region, Northern Nigeria (MOSLEM northern Nigeria that is) is the undisputed champion of Public sector corruption in Nigeria.

We must do all within our powers to reject this latest attempt at false labelling. Ribadu did it and got away with it. We must not allow Farida Waziri to continue along the same line.

Shine your eyes everyone...

Could it be that in the south it is called "corruption" while up there in the north, it is explained away as "the sharing of the national cake" :confused1 Whichever way, the demoralising reality is that we are dealing with a sophistcated and remorseless band of hungry robbers. It is a looting spree.. I am sure that most honest observers must be too smart to be fooled by the ceaseless juggling of facts under Ribadu and Waziris EFCC..

Jul 22, 2009, 12:21 AM
EFCC arraigns director, 4 others over N1.1bn fraud

…get bail for N250m

ABUJA - The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday arraigned the Director-General of the National Gallery of Arts, Chief Joe Musa before an Abuja high court sitting for stealing a total N1.1billion belonging to the Federal Government.

Three other principal directors of the National Gallery of Arts together with the Personal Assistant to the embattled Director-General were also arraigned yesterday by the anti-graft agency for alleged complicity.

The four others are Olusegun Ogunba who is the Director of Finance; Dr Ikwueku Tandoh who is the Director, Research and Education; Mrs Oparagu Elizabeth who is the Deputy Director, Administration and Mr Chinedu Obi who is the Special Assistant to the embattled Director General.

They were all accused to have stolen the said sum within three years, spanning August 1, 2006 and April 2009. But they all pleaded not guilty to the charge yesterday.
They also succeeded to procure their bail through an oral application argued on their behalf by their counsel, Mr Valentine Offia. They said during trial, they would prove to the court that the allegations against them were a mere ruse.

Although their oral application for bail succeeded yesterday, their counsel told the presiding judge, Justice Adebayo Adesina, that it might be impossible for them to meet the bail conditions. He said it was stringent.

Justice Adesina had granted them bail in the sum of N50million each with one surety each in like sum. He said each surety must be a civil servant of level 16 and above with evidence of means. The surety must have landed property worth the bail sum within the jurisdiction of the high court.

The judge also ordered that the accused persons must surrender their travel documents, including local and international passports to the registrar of the court while their trial lasts.

Their counsel, Mr Offia had begged the judge orally to vary the bail conditions, a request which was declined immediately.

Justice Adesina said: ‘I have already granted them bail on conditions. The conditions attached remain my order. I cannot vary it except I am convinced that it would be impossible for them to meet. "But for now, that is my order. It remains my order," he said yesterday

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/2009/07/21/efcc-arraigns-director-4-others-over-n1-1bn-fraud/

Jul 22, 2009, 05:02 PM
Senate Probes N400b Sales Proceeds From Govt Houses

Senators on Tuesday mandated their Housing and Urban Development Committee, chaired by Ikechukwu Obiorah, to investigate how the Presidential Implementation Committee (PIC) disbursed N400 billion garnered from the sale of government houses.

The Committee will also probe how the five per cent sales tax from the deals was handled, likewise the N15 billion bank interest on the N400 billion.

The Senate handed down the directives after the PIC, chaired by Minister of State for Housing, Grace Ekpiwhire, snubbed an invitation from the Housing and Urban Development Committee to explain how the N400 billion was disbursed.

The PIC, it was learnt, turned down the invitation because it could not account for the amount made from the sales.

The resolution was based on a motion moved by Obiora on behalf of 15 of his colleagues, drawing attention to the activities of the PIC.

The lawmakers noted that "proceeds accruing from the sale of Federal Government properties were meant to be remitted and paid into the treasury of the Federal Government, including accrued interest, but there are no records showing how much was realised as interest.

"The implementation process appeared to have been characterised by racketeering and underhand deals, in breach of due process, while the guidelines appeared marred by spending of proceeds, including accrued interests, without requisite appropriation by the National Assembly (NASS).

"Contrary to the guidelines, houses were sold below their reserved prices while huge sums of money, representing five per cent service charge accompanying every transaction, appear to have been frittered away or diverted.

"Houses taken from legal sitting tenants, most of whom have served the country for over 30 years, were granted to individuals and corporate bodies without due process and in violation of the guidelines."

Other Senators who supported the motion include: Tawar Umbi Wada, Ayogu Eze, Abubakar Danso Sodangi, Ahmad Lawan, Kabiru Gaya, Victor Ndoma-Egba, and Kanti Mahmud Bello.

Osita Izunaso recalled that the exercise has been characterised by all manner of scandals, especially with respect to civil servants who have paid their dues to the nation.

He cited the sale of the upscale 1004 Housing Estate in Lagos, which was sold for N7 billion, but "the same consortium is now selling a flat there at between N350 million to N400 million. This motion is a life saving motion for Nigeria."

Mohammed Mohammed supported the motion and urged the Committee to unmask those to whom the houses were sold.

The Committee is expected to present a report to plenary in eight weeks.

Meanwhile, the Senate has passed into law the 2009 budget of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), increasing it from N96 billion to N128.4 billion.

The rise followed an increase of N45 billion to N55 billion from contributions from oil companies.

The NDDC budget forwarded to the NASS two weeks ago by President Umaru Yar'Adua was based on a revenue projection of N96,617,570,109 and actual receipts from the previous year.

The Chamber approved the budget after accepting the report of its Niger Delta Committee, which was presented by its Chairman, James Manager.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article03

Jul 26, 2009, 04:16 PM
Halliburton: British Lawyer swindles Nigerians of $30m - Abacha's cousin on the run over $20m aircraft purchase

A British lawyer (names with held) who is the arrow-head of the $190million Halliburton scandal, enriched himself fraudulently to the tune of $30million of the money without the knowledge of his collaborators, Sunday Tribune can report.

According to sources close to the federal government's 5-man panel, set up to investigate the bribery scandal, the arrow-head, a British Lawyer, who was said to have gotten a court order to prevent the British government from extraditing him out of the UK, deceived both the Nigerian beneficiaries of the scandal and his employers, by using fake names and secret codes to siphon some of the monies to himself under false pretence.

It was learnt that his tricks were exposed when a conservative calculation of the amount disbursed to the Nigerian beneficiaries was made and it was discovered that about $30million was missing.

One of the sources said, "We later tracked the huge amount to some secret accounts which were later traced to The British lawyer".

Sunday Tribune further learnt that late General Sani Abacha's cousin who is currently on the run , was also involved in the purchase of refurbished aircraft for the Nigeria College of Aviation Technology after he collected over $20million for the purchase of a new one.

The aircraft, said to be over 10 years old and which was to be grounded, was brought in from France by the late general's cousin after conniving with some persons in the Aviation industry

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/26072009/news/news5.html

Aug 7, 2009, 01:17 PM
R-E-V-E-A-L-E-D! Corruption in police - Policemen make N3bn monthly from illegal assignments, - We are not aware, say police; promise to sanction erring officers

SOME top officers of the Nigeria Police and their men, it has been revealed, make about N3 billion monthly from the illegal posting of policemen to guard private individuals. The new Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr. Ogbonna Onovo, had, on Wednesday, disclosed that about 100,000 policemen were attached illegally to individuals that were not entitled to such privileges. He had subsequently issued a seven-day ultimatum to the affected policemen to return to their duty posts or face the consequence.

But a credible source told the Nigerian Tribune that the police hierarchy, indeed, was making a fortune from such illegal postings. The source revealed that it was through such illegal attachment of policemen to private individuals, who were not entitled but had the money to pay for such "security services," that these top guns of the police made their money.

For instance, a policeman who was lucky to be posted on such "special duties," according to the source, "was entitled to a payment of N1,000 on a daily basis, which adds up to N30,000 in a month." Out of this amount, the source explained further that the "policeman on special duty is expected to remit N200 to his commander or whoever is his supervising officer from the N1,000 daily payment. The total amount that is remitted on a monthly basis to these top police officers who are involved in the illegal posting racket, is N6,000.

"In other words, these policemen make N3 billion monthly from these 100,000 men they have posted out to those who can pay for their services," the source stated, adding that such postings were well known in the police and the racket was a thriving one and that low ranking policemen even struggled and prayed to receive such a ‘favour' from their superior officers.

"Even these junior policemen do not complain. They fight one another to get assigned to these ‘special duties' because they know the kind of money they would make from them," he said, citing the case of one policeman, who asked the influential person he was asked to guard to intercede on his behalf when he was told by his commanding officer that he would be redeployed.

The source further stated that the police authorities were aware of the posting racket but chose not to do anything even when the Federal Executive Council, at one of its meetings in March, ordered the former IGP, Mr. Mike Okiro, to immediately withdraw such policemen from those unauthorised individuals.

Although it is not known how these influential police officers who are benefiting from the posting racket would react to the ultimatum of the new IGP, it is said that there is no way the illegal practice would cease in the force.

"Such postings will continue, though surreptitiously," the source said, saying that what was at stake for some of these police guns was more than met the eye. "We are talking about multi-billion Naira racket here. There is no way it will stop," he added.

Although it is not known how these influential police officers who are benefiting from the posting racket would react to the ultimatum of the new IGP, it is said that there is no way the illegal practice would cease in the force.

"Such postings will continue, though surreptitiously," the source said, saying that what was at stake for some of these police guns was more than met the eye. "We are talking about multi-billion naira racket here. There is no way it will stop," he added.

However, when contacted over the issue, the Nigeria Police Public Relations Officer, ACP Emmanuel Ojukwu, denied knowledge of the illegal posting racket from which commanding officers made billions of naira. He admitted instead that it was true that many policemen were illegally attached to unqualified individuals and that the police authorities had decided to tackle such illegal practice, saying that any officer that flouted the new order would be severely dealt with.

Said ACP Ojukwu: "We are not aware that these commanding officers are making money from such postings. But the IGP has decided to put an end to the practice. And any commissioner of police who does not obey the order of the IGP is on his own. Such a commissioner will face sanction from the headquarters. Such a commissioner will be removed from his command and will face disciplinary action," he said.

The Force PPRO said that Mr. Onovo was serious about the order he gave on the matter and that "it is not going to be business as usual in the force. Just as the IGP had directed, those individuals who are entitled to the police have been listed. Anyone outside that list should look for alternative protection either from the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps or by engaging the services of private security agencies," he stated.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/07082009/news/news1.html

Aug 10, 2009, 01:38 PM
Nigerians Stashed Away N1.16tr In 2007 (http://www.independentngonline.com/news/tfpg/article03)
By Adeola Yusuf ,CORRESPONDENT, Lagos

Nigerians "just in one year," 2007, stashed over $8 billion:D -peanuts (N1.16 trillion) in foreign banks, with the money idling away still when it could be productively channelled into the economy, Jude Amaefule, an economic and oil expert, lamented at the weekend.

He reiterated in Abuja that the savings, also known as 'Diasporic Direct Inflow (DDI),' which leapfrog the financial systems of beneficiary countries, could be used to rescue Nigeria's power and oil sectors.

Amaefule, the Chairman of Emerald Energy Resources (EER), an international oil company based in Lagos, noted that the Diaspora Investment Fund (DIF) is Nigeria's money abroad, an untapped source of funding for projects that could upgrade living standards.

His disclosure gels with government's confirmation on April 4 of the probe of a secret bank account in Switzerland where $150 million from the $180 million Halliburton bribe belonging to Nigerian officials is lodged.

Federal Attorney General and Justice Minister, Michael Aondoakaa, said American officials told him of the existence of the secret account during his visit to Washington.

The United States authorities had prosecuted American collaborators in the scam involving Abuja officials in exchange for contracts.

The scandal, which is about the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) scandal, dates from 1994 when bids were submitted to build Africa's first liquefied natural gas plant in Bonny, Rivers State, at a cost of $6 billion.

"We have discovered that $150 million of the bribe money is in Zurich. That is the first shocking discovery. The entire money is $180 million, but $150 million is already trapped in Zurich," Aondoakaa stated.

The government is yet to ascertain those who own the money, he added.

How was it traced to Switzerland, then? he was asked.

"Am I not the Chief Law Officer of this country?" he riposted rhetorically. "I went to the U.S. and we had useful information; but we need to have official information because I don't want to rely on (mere conversation).

"If you are talking to me, sharing ideas with me, I must have all the information authenticated by the government. The U.S. Government has been very friendly to us."

Aondoakaa explained that Nigeria cannot prosecute suspects without evidence, which was why he travelled to Washington to ensure the release of the list of those involved.

Amaefule noted that "Despite the fast pace of growth and strong resource endowment, Nigeria has not increased its Gross Domestic Product (GDP)/capita beyond that of its smaller and resource-poor neighbours. Recent trends have even shown Ghana (a country with a minuscule fraction of Nigeria's resource endowment) overtaking it.

"The DIF is an innovative investment vehicle that engenders the dual goal of achieving capital growth for the individual investor, while facilitating Nigeria's economic growth.

"It is obvious that Nigeria's overdependence on oil has virtually diminished its attention to the other sectors of the economy."

The dwindling investment in the oil and gas sector is not encouraging, he stressed, because the "reverse should actually be the case, with the sector providing the leverage to push the other economic sectors to enviable heights of growth."

Aug 11, 2009, 01:13 AM
Nigeria: FG Losses N10 Billion Yearly to Poor Implementation of BPP Act

Abuja - The Director General of the Bureau for Public Procurement (PPP), Emeka Eze has blamed the Federal Ministry of Works, Housing and Urban Development for failure to key into the new procurement Act as it relates to the award of contract in the country.

Eze made the remark while addressing the procurement officers from the Ministry of Works, Housing and Urban Development at a stakeholders, sectoral workshop held at the new State House auditorium in Abuja.

He also challenged the procurement officers not to always fail to exhibit courage to kick against wrongful acts by their bosses and political class in their various ministry, department and agencies (DPA) no matter the degree of pressure coming from them.

Noting that the procurement officers have always refused to implement the Procurement Act as it should have been, for fear of

losing their jobs or other forms of intimidation from their bosses, he stated President Yar'Adua's protection and support for any officer who will be intimidated in the course of doing the right thing.

Adding, he said the essence for complete implementation of the Act is for the citizens and government to enjoy value for money expended on projects.

He regretted that failure to carry out their duties in the course of awarding contract has always rendered the citizens and government final losers.

He regretted that before the introduction of the law in 2007, the country was losing about N10 billion yearly due to corruption and failure to judiciously apply the provisions of the procurement Act in the award of contracts.

Eze explained that prior to the new Act, Nigeria had been experiencing selective tendering of contract, sole sourcing contracting, and contract price negotiation were dominant practices rather than exceptions.

Other vices, he observed in the shoddy implementation of the Act include non advertising, limited and ineffective bidding, while the process lacks competitiveness.

Citing unclear evaluation and award criteria of contracts as bane of effective implementation of the provision of the Act, the BPP boss added, "Extra budgetary projects were abandoned and became a common feature in our national life."

He further noted that political interference and control in contract award are dominant coupled with inflations of prices and costs and that delay, uncertainty and sometimes non payment for jobs done, wrongful exclusion of qualified bidders fake documentation and falsifications of facts have formed part of the anomalies in the previous procurement Act which led to the introduction of the new law in 2007.

In his presentation, an expert in development law, Chibuzor Ekwekwuo told the procurement officers that it is expedient that every information pertaining to any project to be awarded in any part of the country be made public, particularly for the beneficiaries to enable them also involve in the monitoring process.

He regretted that often time, most projects are either shoddily executed or out rightly abandoned uncompleted because the beneficiaries were not initially aware of the information about the project and the contractors involved.

According to him in some cases, project sites are only cleared and the contractors disappeared, and yet payments would have been made to them. "But there is no body to ask them any question since the beneficiaries were not initially aware on the detail of the contract."

In his explanation, he said, "the most in the series of abandoned projects in many communities in Nigeria are those that relates to boreholes drilling whereby necessary information about the dept, cost, and other necessary information is not made known to the end users."

He charged the procurement officers to correct the identified lapse by informing the public and educating them on the nature of the proposed project before it's commencement to enable them monitor the project and ask necessary questions while the project is on going and completed.

He warned the procurement officers to desist from awarding contracts if the funds for the contract are not readily available, adding, "It is a criminal offence for contracts to be formalized and awarded when the funds are not available."

LINK: http://allafrica.com/stories/200907300695.html

Aug 12, 2009, 04:23 PM
Vaswani: EFCC arrests Bello, ex-Customs boss, 3 others

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commissions (EFCC) yesterday arrested former Comptroller-General of the Nigerian Customs, Alhaji Ahmed Bello and three others over their involvement in alleged N2.5 billion import duty evasion by the Vaswani Group.

Daily Sun gathered that the former Comptroller-General, who is currently in custody of the EFCC, was picked up by the security agents from his house in Abuja.

Alhaji Ahmed Bello, was arrested along with one Hanatu Suleiman, a comptroller of Customs in charge of Apapa Ports in Lagos and one Hussein Usman, a clearing agent and Tajudeen Olalere, who is the General Manager of the Vaswani group.

All the four persons were said to have been arrested at different locations in Abuja and would soon appear in court.
When contacted, the Head of Media and Publicity at the commission's headquarters in Abuja, Mr. Femi Babafemi, confirmed the arrest but declined further information on when they would appear in court.

LINKS: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2009/aug/12/national-12-08-2009-002.htm


Aug 12, 2009, 04:28 PM
EFCC seals off Nnamani's companies - Over alleged N5.3bn fraud

OPERATIVES of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Monday, sealed off the premises of Cosmo FM radio station, Rainbownet Nigeria Ltd and other companies believed to be owned by former governor of Enugu State, Senator Chimaroke Nnamani.

The action followed a directive by the chairman of the anti-graft agency, Mrs. Farida Waziri, who was acting on reports that some agents of the former governor had broken into the companies' premises to take physical possession of the seized assets.

The properties were seized by the EFCC through a Lagos Federal High Court order in May 2007, following the indictment of Nnamani over alleged corruption and embezzlement of state funds to the tune of N5.3 billion.

A statement by the commission on Monday denied media reports that it had returned the seized companies to the former governor. "Indeed, the companies were seized on the orders of a federal high court, Lagos in May 2007 and a reversal order obtained by the management of the companies in Appeal Court, Enugu recently. Although the same court held that the commission can exercise its powers over the companies, the EFCC has, however, filed for a stay of execution and an appeal against the unfavourable aspect of the judgment," the statement said.

"While the issues were still being sorted out in court, reports had it that some agents of the owners of the companies broke in to take possession of the premises. The criminal aspect of that had since been reported to the police to investigate while after proper briefing, the EFCC chairman, last week, directed operatives to seal off the premises, an order that was effectively carried out on Monday after all necessary security arrangements had been put in place," the statement added.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/aug/11/613.html

Aug 14, 2009, 09:10 PM
The Looting Clown Of Owerri...

Imo Assembly probes Ohakim over alleged N4.2b scam

APPARENTLY to get to the root of the allegation, Imo State House of Assembly on Wednesday constituted a five-man ad-hoc committee to probe the alleged financial misappropriation of about N4.2 billion by Governor Ikedi Ohakim.

The Assembly Speaker, Goodluck Opiah, who charged the panel to do an unbiased job, named membership of the committee as Samuel Anyanwu (Ikeduru Constituency) chairman, Ikenna Emeh (Isu), Simeon Iwunze (Isiala-Mbano), Declan Emelumba (Oru-West) and Bede Eke (Ngor-Okpala) as members.

The panel, which is required to submit its report on September 30, will look into the allegation that Ohakim expended N1.2 billion public funds for his reception and defection to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) recently.

It will also look at the building of his mansion in the United States (U.S.) and South Africa, transportation of some emirs from the state to the North after their meeting in the state at N1 billion and an alleged financial inducement of about N2 billion to a senator and a member of the House of Representatives.

The motion for the probe was moved by Emelumba in reaction to legion of publications in the papers against Ohakim authored by one Mr. Maximus Uba. He noted that since the writer can be traced, there was need to verify the claim.

A former PDP chairman in the state, Dr. Alex Obi, has accused Ohakim of plotting through suspected bandits to harm him.

Obi made the allegation yesterday in Owerri while briefing journalists on the experiences he has been having with the governor in the past few days since he decamped from the Progressives Peoples Alliance (PPA) to the PDP.

The PDP chief accused Ohakim of peddling falsehood that the state government had awarded him contract to the tune of N1.8 billion with 100 per cent down payment.

He disclosed that only N329.3 million contract was awarded to his only company (GORMALEX Nigeria Limited, to build Imo State Council of Traditional Rulers and Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON) secretariats via letter SGI/STB/S.161/2008/6 on June 7, 2008.

He said that only 25 per cent payment had not been made to him eight months after it was awarded, adding that they had no other contract. The payment made to him, he said, was done in three instalments, stressing that he had injected more money into the project.

"By announcing N1.8 billion publicly, he is telling thieves, armed robbers and kidnappers to go after me. My life is in jeopardy. I only want to remind him that I have aspired to be governor some 20 years ago with a man who inspired him (Ohakim), he added.

But the state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Dr. Amanze Obi, told The Guardian on phone shortly after the briefing that Obi's claim was childish, saying it was wrong "to bite a finger that fed you".

He disclosed that Obi's palatial buildings were there to show how he had benefited from the government, stressing that his behaviour recently to the government was questionable.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/aug/14/15.html

Aug 15, 2009, 05:14 PM
Please stop tarnishing the image of Nigeria. There are no looting or scams in Nigeria. What you mistakingly call looting or scams are in line with a saying popular and well accepted in our country that "Na for where person they work na im e go chop (it is where someone is working that he should eat from.)". It is therefore culturally acceptable in our society for anyone to defraud his employers. All you guys complaining on the internet are only moaning because you are not part of those "making it" in Nigeria. What a country!!!!!!!!!

Sep 1, 2009, 01:01 PM
N1bn alleged fraud: ICPC begins arrest of education ministry officials

THE operatives of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offiences Commission (ICPC) have arrested a top official of the Ministry of Education alleged to be involved in the misappropriation of over N1 billion during the tenure of Mrs. Oby Ezekwesili as minister.

The arrest of the official by the operatives of the ICPC indicated the commencement of investigations into the case, just as the commission had set machinery in motion to arrest more officials of the ministry involved in the scam.

The ICPC indicated its resolve not to spare anyone linked with the mismanagement of the fund, adding that investigations into the allegation were not targeted at any particular individual.

The ICPC, speaking on the development, said it was not acting on frivolous petitions against the suspects, adding that it had authenticated the source, as well as established preliminary facts on the issues raised by the petitioner.

The commission said the said petition was filed in the office of its chairman, Justice Emmanuel Ayoola, on November 28, 2007, who in turn assigned the petition with no. ICPC/P/NC/683/2007 for investigation on January 15, 2009.

According to the ICPC, an interim report on the petition was submitted to the office of the chairman of the commission on November 7, 2008, followed by the submission of a progress report on February 12, 2009, just as the final report was submitted on March 29.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/31082009/news/news12.html

Sep 1, 2009, 01:16 PM
Import duty: Customs uncovers N6.1bn underpayment by companies - Nine banks indicted

THE new Comptroller General of Customs, Alhaji Dikko Abdullahi, on Monday announced that the Customs Service had uncovered a N6.1 billion underpayment in the value of import duty due to the Federal Government, and vowed to retrieve every kobo, in due course.

The Comptroller General, who disclosed that the service would commence the arrest of defaulters beginning from today, at a briefing held on his behalf by Deputy Comptroller Hassan Mohammed Mundu, identified nine banks which the CGC said had deliberately withheld certain documents and information, the service needed to aid its investigation to further nail more defaulters who were still illegally holding on to government revenues.

"We have discovered a huge amount of deliberate undervaluation of import even against the value suggested by Risk Assessment Report (RAR) issued by service providers. So far, Demand Notices (DN) of N6.1 billion had been raised against importers and agents who had conspired to defraud the Federal Government. These defaulters are now warned through this medium to hasten and collect the DNs, as Customs Duty Payment Investigation Team (CDPIT) has been given instruction to block out both the importers and agents involved as from today.

"As a follow up to this step, the Enforcement Unit of the CDPIT has been directed to proceed with the arrest of defaulters to ensure that all monies owed the Federal Government are recovered," the Customs boss emphasised.

Pointing out that the service had so far recovered N2 billion, the CGC gave the names of the banks which he said had withheld vital information in respect of duty remittances from importers to the Central Bank of Nigeria CBN as FinBank Plc, Skye Bank Plc, Equitorial Trust Bank Plc, Citi Bank Nigeria Ltd, Diamond Bank Plc, Spring Bank Plc, Union Bank Plc, Sterling Bank Plc and Unity Bank Plc.

"The Service may presume any further delay (to release the information) as deliberate and may be compelled to sanction uncooperative banks," Alhaji Abdullahi said, noting that the accounts of the 15 banks, which actually forwarded required documents, showed "discrepancies running into millions of naira."

"This briefing will not be complete without mentioning the names of companies that are leading in the list of defaulters: Honda Nigeria Ltd owed N4.6 billion, but has since investigation, paid N1,680,324,547.

"The Orazulike Trading Company Ltd owed N453,345,537; Corporate Oil and Gas, N1,160,927,458; Intercity Commodities, N372,822,990; Coscharis N216,776,715 and Top Feeds N105,777,756," the CGC stated further.

He stated that the operation of ASYCUDA, the automated system of keeping customs data was now being critically evaluated, with a view to making it less vulnerable to abuse, in the bid to ensure it effectively served the needs of both the government and the trading community.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/01092009/news/news2.html

Sep 1, 2009, 01:26 PM
House: N325bn Missing NLNG Funds Traced to US

A whopping N325 billion belonging to the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) has been discovered in an unnamed Nigerian bank and another bank in Chicago, United States of America, THISDAY has learnt.
The fund is said to be part of the total amount of N500 billion proceeds accruing to the Federal Government from the multi-billion dollar gas venture.
But it was allegedly missing from the Federation Account, according to information released by a House of Representatives committee yesterday.
Details of the two banks were not available as at press time.
Chairman, House Committee on Gas Resources, Hon. Igochukwu Aguma, who spoke on the issue said that out of the $4.5 billion proceeds from government investments in the NLNG over the last four years, only about N20 billion ($127 million) had been remitted into the Federation Account as required by law.

The remaining had become a subject of controversy, he said.
Aguma who spoke during a courtesy visit by some legislators to media houses in the Federal Capital Territory, explained that following the discrepancies in the accounts of the NLNG and the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, the House instituted a forensic investigation.
The result of the investigation confirmed the anomaly, he stated. He said that although the NLNG and NNPC claimed the funds were ploughed back into the expansion of the NLNG on behalf of the government, such an investment should not have been done without due appropriation from the National Assembly.

According to him, the law stipulates that all funds accruing from government investment should be remitted into the Federation Account while the parliament has the role of appropriating such monies to any area the government choosen in a given fiscal year.
Also, the Federal Government is losing revenue to oil multinationals because of the poor capacity and compromise of industry regulators in the monitoring of the operations of those companies, said Aguma.

But responding last night, NLNG said in a statement by Manager of Communications, Mr. Ifeanyi Mbanefo, that it was untrue that government funds were diverted.

"The company has never defaulted in payment or remittance of its dividend to the government... the company wholly and completely declare untrue allegations that its dividends to the government were diverted."
He continued: "For the avoidance of doubts, all its payments were made by electronic wire transfer which ensures that there is an audit trail. Any suggestion that NLNG did anything or aided anyone to divert government funds is wrong and inaccurate."
Besides, Chairman, House Committee on Petroleum Resources (Upstream), Honourable Bassey Otu, said the investigations into the petroleum sector by the House of Representatives has revealed that the industry has been under the grip of a cabal whose stock in trade was sabotaging government efforts in sanitizing the system.

Chairman, House Committee on Legislative Compliance, Honourable Daemi Akpanah debunked insinuations that the House had embarked on numerous probes to blackmail either the Executive or some individuals.
According to Akpanah, the investigations were designed to expose corruption, inefficiency and waste of government resources. He however lamented that the legislature was handicapped because it lacked the power to enforce the outcomes of its various investigations.

LINK: http://www.thisdayonline.com/nview.php?id=153284

Sep 7, 2009, 09:18 AM
This endemic corruption palaver reminds me of a defunct bank s popular advert in the eighties which says "for this corner,e dey there,for that corner,e dey there...."na im i come remember one dream i had recently that all nijas just woke up one day to discover that nija itself had been cannibalised,packed in ghana must go bags and shipped to switzerland by a cunning ruler!the sad thing is that my dream usually comes through!!!:D:D:D

Sep 9, 2009, 09:16 PM
N1tr not remitted to federation account annually'

About N1 trillion was "technically lost" annually over the last five years due to conflicting laws in the country's statute book, Speaker of the House of Representatives Dimeji Bankole has said.

It also emerged that the leadership of the House was privy to the banking reforms initiated by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, contrary to the impression that it was left in the dark.

Bankole said that revenue was lost because a certain law allows agencies to spend part of the monies they generate rather than remit all resources into the Federation Account as stipulated by the constitution.

He spoke at the opening of the 1st National Project Management Conference organised by the Project Management Institute of Nigeria in collaboration with the Ministry of National Planning.

The speaker traced the origin of these obnoxious laws to the era of military rule. Then, the government took advantage of the suspension of the constitution and the absence of the National Assembly to promulgate laws that did not make room for transparency and fiscal discipline, he explained.
He said the House was uncomfortable with the conflict between the constitution and the laws guiding the operations of some government agencies such as the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) and National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA).

The House will prefer a situation where the constitution is held supreme by government and all its agencies, he stated.

According to Bankole, such laws have created loopholes in the system and has been partly responsible for the gap between the annual budgets and their implementation. He added that consecutive appropriation of funds through yearly budgets (inputs) have not yielded the desired outcomes because a large chunk of revenue that should have been captured by the budget have been excluded.

Bankole said that the solution lies in the National Assembly which should make new laws or amend existing ones to take cognizance of the shortcomings of previous legislations or their implementation

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/sep/9/203.html

Sep 18, 2009, 06:50 PM
Nigeria spent $10bn on power in 10 years - Shonekan

NIGERIA has spent over S10 billion on the power sector in the last 10 years, former Head of State, Chief Ernest Shonekan, has said.

Shonekan, who is also the Chairman, Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), however, said in spite of the huge investment in the sector, its performance has continued to be below expectation.

The former head of state, spoke on Wednesday in Lagos at the 3rd Power Solutions Conference organised by PowerCap Limited. According to Shonekan, "the problem of the power sector is compounded by poor planning and the inability to bridge the gap between capacity level and current demand thereby causing epileptic supply of power in the country."

Shonekan said "there is need for the country to improve the current power generation. The desire is more challenging given the need of the nation to be among the best 20 economies in the world by 2020."

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/17092009/news/news16.html

Oct 6, 2009, 03:15 PM
We stopped N3.8 trn fraud in 5 year - Reps

The House of Representatives said it has halted the fraud totalling N3.8 trillion within the federal ministries in the past five years, as part of its drive towards curbing corruption within the Federal Civil Service.

It said, it was able to track the sum of N3 trillion, being internally generated revenue not remitted into the Federation Account in the past five years by different revenue generation agencies and departments as a result of its doggedness.

It also said through intensive oversight functions embarked upon by its committees, it was able to recover the sum of N807 billion between 2007 and 2008, as unspent fund from past approved budgets.

The House Committee Chairman on Media and Public Matters, Honourable Eseme Eyibo, made this known on Monday, in Abuja, stressing that the House, billed to resume from its end of the year recess today, would intensify efforts in further plucking corruption within the government circles.

He said the money so recovered had been rolled over into the 2008 and 2009 budgets to finance the deficits, just as he stressed that such a feat had never been performed by any arm of government since Nigeria attained independence in 1960.

He said the current set of representatives had been taking the implementation profile of national budgets into consideration and, according to him, had done enough in causing stability in national economy, contrary to general impression.

Stressing the importance of oversight functions by the federal legislators, Eyibo said the House plugged the holes in pattern of expenditures by the Federal Government.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/06102009/news/news5.html

Oct 6, 2009, 03:18 PM
N2.2trn illegal deductions: FG may dump out-of-court settlement

The Federal Government, on Monday, gave an indication that it may back out of an out-of-court settlement arrangement with 20 states that sued it over an alleged N2.2 trillion illegal deduction from the Federation Account by the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Though, the administration of President Umaru Yar'Adua initiated the moves to settle out of court with the 20 states that were demanding a refund from the Federal Government, the government told the Supreme Court on Monday that it would prefer the apex court's pronouncement on some knotty issues in the suit tabled before, it by the states.

Parties in the suit were expected to bring their memorandum of settlement before the court yesterday, but the last four months of horse-trading between the central and state governments, seemed not to have yielded the desired result.

However, at yesterday's proceedings, the plaintiffs' counsel, Adegboyega Awomolo (SAN), told the court that the parties still had some pending contentious issues delaying the final agreement between the two parties.

According to him, "we had series of meeting, we have agreed on the areas to be settled out of court. We have reached substantial terms of agreement."

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/06102009/news/news7.html

Oct 6, 2009, 03:22 PM
N161m fraud: EFCC files fresh charges against Boni Haruna, 3 others

The Economic and Financial crimes Commission, (EFCC) has filed 28 amended charges against the former governor of Adamawa State, Boni Haruna and three others.

The three other accused were Mohammed Inuwa Bassi, Minority Leader in the Adamawa State House of Assembly, John Babani Elias who is now at large; and Al-Akim Investment Nigeria Limited.

When the matter came up on Monday October 5, 2009, at the Federal High Court, Maitama, Abuja, both the first and second accused were in court, while the third accused was absent.

Counsel for EFCC, O. Anozie, who stood in for Paul Erokoro, SAN, regretted that the commission had not been able to serve the 3rd and 4th accused with the amended charges due to their non-availability and therefore, asked the court to fix a new date for the accused to take their pleas.

"The case came up for taking of plea by the accused persons, but it could not go on because the 3rd and 4th accused have not been served with the amended charges. The commission has found it hard to locate them. Hopefully they will be served within the next few days," he said.

The presiding judge, Justice Adamu Bello, therefore, adjourned till November 12, 2009, for the accused to take their plea, just as he ordered that Boni Haruna and Mohammed Inuwa Bassi, should continue to enjoy their bail.

Before the latest development, Haruna and Bassi were first arraigned by the EFCC on Tuesday, August 5, 2008, on a 21- count charge of money laundering and stealing.

They were later admitted to bail in the sum of N100 million, one surety each in like sum who must be a responsible citizen and provide evidence of ownership of property in Abuja worth that sum.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/06102009/news/news4.html

Oct 6, 2009, 10:19 PM
N10bn Scandal rocks Anambra PDP primaries

Allegation of bribery to the tune of N10 billion is currently rocking the Peoples Democratic party (PDP), being the sum alleged to have been extorted from the governorship aspirants by various top stakeholders of the party, who were members of various congress committees in the state.

To this end the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has been urged to probe the alleged extortion as well as the banks and top party leaders that allegedly received the sum.

This is coming shortly after the Chairman of Anambra Congress Committee and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole, announced that the committee is obeying the Ekwulobia HighCourt order restraining his committee and the party in general, from conducting the congress.

The court injunction that stalled Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governorship Primaries and the consequent tension it generated in the state have been blamed on the activities of Abuja-based politicians.

The Publicity Secretary of the party in Anambra State, Afam Ilouno, said aspirants who have no structures on the ground but want to be governors have contrived to stall the progress so far made in uniting the party.

"Some aspirants based in Abuja who cannot even be recognised by members of their wards want to be governors. They don't know that politics is a game of number. They think they can buy delegates with money. When they feared they have failed, they rushed to the court to get injunction to restrain the governorship primaries from holding. As for me and the grassroots at home we are ready for the election," he said.

Similarly, Ngozi Agudosi an aspirants urged the commission and the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party to investigate the payment of N10,000 each by 3,940 party members, who obtained forms for the ward delegate election, which according to him is not contained in the guideline of the exercise and that no receipt was issued to those that obtained the forms.

He accused a member of the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the PDP of manipulating the congress to his own selfish ends.

"PDP in Anambra is lucky that Bankole came today. Under normal circumstances, after conducting primaries or congresses you paste the list of the delegates returned on the notice board so that people that contested for this election and won will come and see it.

"But today you were in Anambra, a group of people were already at the venue of the primaries and I now ask myself a simple question, how did this people know that they are delegates. So Chris Uba; what he did was to mobilise all the names he gave to Governor (Gabriel) Suswam and pushed them in as delegates for the primaries. And it would have been a very big minus if Mr. Speaker went ahead to conduct the primaries."

Agudosi also confirmed apprehensions at the early hours of Friday that the Women Development Centre venue of the governorship primaries would have been burnt by angry party members, who were unhappy over the conduct of the ward delegate congress.

According to Agudosi "Mr. Speaker saved Nigeria, saved PDP and saved Anambra State. You do not need to ask that question or tell anybody. N5,250,000 is not a small money and I have never seen that kind of money in my life.

"And somebody coughed it out, went to the PDP National Secretariat and paid that money and you collected the receipt then you came conducted the Kangaroo congresses and gave somebody all the member of delegates and then if you are in the shoes of that person that paid N5,250,000 and this kind of thing is done to you, what will you do? You will simply engage on a total break down of law and order. How about those that paid the illegal N10,000 for the delegate congress and their names did not appear? In fact, Bankole saved us from mayhem, arson and lost of life."

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/oct/3/407.html

Oct 8, 2009, 09:44 PM
N300bn road contract: Senate indicts PDP cheiftains

ABUJA - The Senate will tomorrow receive a report of its investigations into the alleged misuse of more than N300 billion by the Obasanjo administration in the construction and rehabilitation of federal roads between 1999 and 2007.

The report according to Senate sources indicted a leader of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who served the Obasanjo administration as a Minister of Works 1999 and 2007. (Anenih?:twisted: )

Enthusiasm for the report was at feverish pitch in the Senate yesterday as the Senate stepped down an already scheduled motion on the deplorable condition of federal roads in Akwa Ibom State.

The motion sponsored by Senator Effiong Bob Vanguard gathered was stepped down so as not to water down the report of the ad-hoc committee which investigated the state of all federal roads during the Obasanjo era.

The Senate investigations of the alleged utilization of more than N300 billion during the Obasanjo administration was upon a motion moved by Senator Ayogu Eze.

An inkling to the indictment of the PDP leader was conveyed by several Senators yesterday after the Senate stepped down Bob's motion which the Senate had last week unanimously resolved to take yesterday.

Sources in the Senate ad-hoc committee also explained yesterday why the report indicted the leader.

"You know the Senate gave us a mandate and it was that nobody should be spared no matter how high,'' one source in the ad-hoc committee told Vanguard yesterday on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to officially disclose the direction of the report which is yet to be debated.

Yesterday, once Senator Bob was called to raise his motion Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, the chairman of the ad-hoc committee raised a point of order to oppose Senator Bob, saying the thrust of the motion was part of the mandate of his committee. He said the report of his ad-hoc committee would be submitted tomorrow.

Vanguard gathered that the political current underlying the determination of many Senators to adopt the Lokpobiri report is the indictment of the PDP national leader over his stewardship while a Minister.

The former Minister and influential politician was alleged to have fought albeit aimlessly to frustrate the election of the present Senate leadership.

Giving an indication of the inclination of the report, Senate spokesman Senator Ayogu Eze at the end of the session urged journalists and Nigerians to move above sentiments and pursue the issues that would be thrown up when the report is presented.

"It is a very detailed and cumbersome report and when we present that report, it will be clear to every Nigerian that we have been able to touch on the heart of what is the problems with the road infrastructure in the country. It had to take that long for the job to be thorough and to be well and luckily we have finished the work and we will lay it tomorrow,'' Senator Eze said yesterday.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/oct/7/305.html

Oct 16, 2009, 05:02 AM
N25bn scam: EFCC files fresh charges against Ibru, others

ABUJA - The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has filed fresh charges against the former Managing Director of Oceanic Bank Plc, Mrs Cecilia Ibru and two others at large over alleged N25.8billion scam.

This was sequel to fresh discoveries made by the anti-graft agency bordering on money laundering involving the building of Oceanic Bank's corporate headquarters on Victoria Island in Lagos in active collaboration with the operators of Waves Nig Ltd, a company formerly owned by one of the sons of Ibru and later acquired by Nana Shetu Bende and Dele Oye in 2006.

An impeccable source at the EFCC headquarters revealed yesterday that Oceanic bank allegedly gave Waves Nigeria Ltd a facility of $110million and N6billion to construct the corporate headquarters of the bank.

Waves Nig Ltd allegedly paid the sum of $10million into the personal account of the former Managing Director from the supposed facility of $110million.
The bank also paid a ten year rent of $22million to Waves Nig Ltd while the corporate headquarters construction was on-going.

It was also discovered that the said building is owned by the company that was granted the facility by Oceanic Bank.

Meanwhile, the EFCC has concluded all arrangements for reparation of Mrs Nana Shetu Bende, Dele Oye and former MD of Intercontinental Bank PLc, Mr Erastus Akingbogbola that escaped from Nigeria immediately the scam was exposed.

Akingbogbola is said to be in hiding in London, Bende in the USA and Oye is being rumoured to be either in the USA or Great Britain.

When contacted, Head, Media and Publicity,Mr Femi Babafemi said "I don't have the details you refer to but I know the agency is still working on some of the individual cases you mentioned.''

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/2009/10/16/n25bn-scam-efcc-files-fresh-charges-against-ibru-others/

Oct 16, 2009, 05:07 AM
Missing N4.9bn sugar money: Reps invite Sanusi, Soludo

Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria [CBN], Lamido Sanusi and predecessor, Professor Chukuwma Soludo, are to appear at the public hearing on the missing N4.9billion set aside for the development of the National Sugar Development Council.
The money, according to the House of Representatives Committee on Industries, was kept in the vaults of the apex bank.

Chairman of the Committee, Solomon Agidani, in a statement after a tour of the agency yesterday, said the Minister of Industry, Chief Achike Udenwa, his predecessor, Charles Ugwu and the Accountant General of the Federation would also join the CBN governors to appear at the public hearing.
Agidani said the committee decided to investigate the whereabouts of the money because it was worrisome that the management of the council could not lay claim to the money.

Executive Secretary of the Sugar Development Council, Alhaji Usman Bello, had informed the committee during the tour that the missing fund was revenue accruable from the 10 per cent sugar levy.
He told the committee that the money was to be lodged with the Central Bank but when approval was given to spend N1.88billion on capital and recurrent projects it was discovered the fund missing.
"When we got the approval, we went to the CBN to deduct from the N6billion Council's account, to our surprise, we found out that only N1.1billion was left in the account, the N4.9billion was no more," he said.

The revelation troubled the committee and it immediately decided to launch a probe into the whereabouts of the money.

Through the public hearing, Agidani said "the committee would be able to expose the problems of accessing the council fund, noting that it was illegal for anybody to touch the money of the council without approvals.

"The investigation will also enable us to know the percentage of sugar levy collected by the Customs Service and the concession given to some importers of raw sugar not to pay the statutory levy".
He stated that at the end of the probe, the committee would come up with a timetable to ban importation of sugar into the country, to encourage local production.

LINK: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/features/newsonthehour/2009/oct/15/newsbreak-15-10-2009-001.htm

Nov 8, 2009, 10:20 AM
N8.2bn scam: Minister, others under probe

Application of public funds in the on-going U-17 World Cup tagged: ‘Nigeria 2009' are reportedly receiving the attention of relevant anti-corruption agencies in the country, even though spending is still being done on the project.

The controversial N8.2 billion contract for the upgrading of the Nigeria Television Authorities (NTA) facilities for the coverage of the competition, was said to have compelled the commencement of the probe, following public outcry on perceived underhand dealings in the award of the contract.

The contract was awarded to a United Kingdom-based company, Well Trade Services (WTS), in partnership with Sony Group, by a minister (names withheld), following an approval by the Federal Executive Council on July 15, 2009.

Checks revealed that the probe was multi-dimensional because of different angles to the contracts awarded for the competition, considering that the handling of funds approved for the competition by the Local Organising Committee, has also been a subject of probe.

The committee had been accused of frivolous spending, with about N40 million said to have been expended on biscuits and soft drinks. A source who preferred anonymity, revealed that given the proactive nature of some of the probing agencies, there might not be any need for petitions to be written against the minister and other public officers before investigations were launched into their activities, especially when there were compelling evidences to look into such matters.

The international dimension to the equipment upgrade contract was said to have been responsible for the early start into the investigation, since it was taken that it would take a relatively longer time to get all the facts in the matter.

Sunday Tribune also learnt that the early start was to make sure that facts gathering had gone far before the completion of the competition and the expected audit of the finances that would go into it by all the relevant agencies.

It was further gathered that the probe became compelling after it was discovered that South Africa, which is hosting the senior World Cup in 2010, paid about N2 billion less for brand new equipment.

Those involved are expected to provide answers to some riddles in the project, especially having to pay more for renovation, even when the said upgrade was said to be almost useless for the configuration NTA was having in place now.

Another issue is the late or non-delivery of the equipment contracted to WTS when the competition was almost ended and why the contract was not awarded directly to Sony, which would supply new kits at a lower cost of 20 per cent less than what was agreed with WTS.

With the broadcast right eventually going to AIT, those involved would also be expected to explain why the contract was still awarded, since FIFA made it known early enough that AIT came tops in its assessment. The contract awarded by the Nigerian government was to "Renovate from SD to HD 6 x 12 Camera HD OB van for £25,777,571.24; renovate from SD to HD 6 x 2 Camera HD SNG van for £4,389,798.89; renovate and upgrade 1 x IBC for £1,952,722.26, with the total project costing £32,120,092.39.

The total value in the nation's currency amounted to N8, 351,224,022, (Eight billion, three hundred and fifty one million, two hundred and twenty-four thousand, twenty-two naira), with the currency exchange put at N260 to one British pound.

Government-owned South Africa Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), on September 9, 2008, signed an agreement with Sony for 380 million rand (about N6.3 billion), to supply brand new OB vans to broadcast the 2009 Confederation Cup and 2010 Soccer World Cup in High-Definition (HD).

The specifications of the OB vans supplied for the World Cup were far superior to that of NTA and were as follows: Four new OB vans. Identically- specified, each 30-ton vehicle is equipped with 18 cameras, and wired for 24, including 3 super-slo HD cameras. The interior is divided into four main areas; production, sound, video tape area (VT) ; and vision control.

Another grey area in the Nigerian contract is that though, Sony also biobled for the direct supply to the NTA at a lower cost, the ministry allegedly decided to award the contract to WTS , which would in turn, buy the equipment from Sony.

A source noted that "the prices quoted by them (WTS) were for renovation as stated on the approved budget and quotation. Also, Sony on its own part, quoted directly to NTA for the same project. However, the same Sony Broadcast, which WTS claimed to be partnering, in quoting directly for the same project, refused to provide NTA a quote for renovation, as they believed that there was no value in renovating the present facilities.

Instead, Sony provided a cheaper quote for brand new equipment to NTA."

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/08112009/news/news2.html

Nov 8, 2009, 10:27 AM
N1.4bn fraud uncovered in Wema Bank's subsidiary

The management of Wema Bank Plc has uncovered a fraud allegedly perpetrated by a top officer of one of its subsidiaries running into about N1.427 billion.

According to sources within the bank who spoke on conditions of anonymity, the said officer (names withheld) was a top manager with a subsidiary of the bank until September 2008, when he was relieved of his duties on account of the fraud.

The man, who was also said to be a proprietor of a new generation church, was alleged to have been involved in a fraud on the account of one of the customers of the subsidiary.

The source disclosed to the Sunday Tribune that the said manager allegedly moved N350 million out of the account based on a letter he had forged. "The bank thereafter, wrote a petition to the Special Fraud Unit (SFU) against the diversion and stealing.

"During the course of investigations, it was discovered that the sum of N330 million was used to acquire a property in Ikoyi, Lagos. However, while the bank's petition was for N350 million, the police, during the course of investigations, stated that the amount recoverable was N810 million," the source stated.

The source added that, based on the fact that he could not return the money to the account, he handed the property over to the chairman of the company who sold the property for N810 million, while the police directed that the proceeds of the sale should be paid over to the bank.

According to the source, the sum of N655 million has been recovered with regard to this original fraud, leaving a balance un-recovered sum of N155 million from that particular fraud.

However, according to the source, there are a number of other frauds currently undergoing investigation, traceable to the same manager. According to documents made available to our reporter, the top manager allegedly fraudulently converted a total sum of N617,217,963.72 (Six hundred and seventeen million, two hundred and seventeen thousand, nine hundred and sixty-three naira, seventy-two kobo) from the subsidiary between August 2007 and September 2008.

For instance, he allegedly converted a N218 million cheque in favour of the company into an unidentified beneficiary's account and allotted 10 million units of Wema Bank Plc's shares currently worth N61,010,362.80 to himself without payment, among a series of other fraudulent activities.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/08112009/news/news3.html

Nov 8, 2009, 10:35 AM
N300m diverted, N6m spent on generator hut: Culture Ministry under siege as Bello Gada's mess gathers stench

The Minister of Culture, Tourism and National Orientation, Senator Bello Jibrin Gada, seems determined to go ahead with plans that would tantamount to misappropriation of funds and gross abuse of office, despite growing public outrage following revelations that N300 million budgeted and released for the rehabilitation of specific National Museums has been diverted to an unconstitutional body hurriedly floated at Gada's ministry.

Although the grant ought to be paid into the coffers of the National Commission for Museums and Monuments (NCMM), the money is being administered by people that are not members of the NCMM Management. However, a source close to the Minister's office countered that some members of the incumbent NCMM leadership, including the acting Director General, Mr. O. A. S. Alasan, attended recent meetings.

Nevertheless, "Travels" can authoritatively reveal that the N300 million, part of a Presidential Intervention Fund conceived to arrest dilapidation at select National Museums across the country; will not be spent on some of the museums and sites, whose perilous states elicited acute sympathy culminating in the Presidential Intervention Fund (PIF). Consequently, some strategic museums will be deprived the new look envisaged for them prior to celebrations marking Nigeria's Golden Jubilee next year. Although some apologists argued that it is better to divert the money to non-priority areas than to lose the funding to bickering, nothing could extenuate the immoral conduct of those that brandished an elixir only to serve the nation some placebo, after the N300 million landed.

Unfortunately, the bulk of the N300 million bailout has been allocated to suspect projects. Not only that, two of the projects billed to gulp the lion's share of the grant were not on lists compiled by eminent personalities brought together by the presidency three years ago.

Reminder: In a curious "Invitation to bid for General Procurement" the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and National Orientation had invited contractors to bid for 10 Lots, which include Kanta/Alkalawa Museums, Sokoto and Nanna Living History/Eco Museum in Koko, Delta State. Interestingly, neither this Eco Museum nor Kanta/Alkalawa Museums, Sokoto featured in the "The Report of the Presidential Committee to Review the state of the National Archives and the National Museum."

It is worth recalling that in the last three years, more than N50 million has been sunk into a phantom Eco Museum with nothing commensurate to show. Inexplicably, another N15 million had been earmarked for this dubious project in the 2009 budget. During our latest trip to Koko, local youths said they were shocked to hear that someone had been using them as cipher; pretending to be interested in improving their lot, only to divert such palliatives at the end of the day. .....

MORE HERE: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/nov/5/500.html

Nov 8, 2009, 10:41 AM
N75m fraud: N-Assembly canvasses sale of refineries

FOLLOWING the allegation of fraud levelled against the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) over products importation and storage in private depots, the National Assembly yesterday charged President Umaru

Yar'Adua to remove the embargo placed on the sale of four refineries in Nigeria, while also canvassing outright sale of the facilities to save the downstream sector of the nation's oil industry.

Chairman, House Committee on downstream sector, Clever Ikisikpo, who stated this during a fact-finding mission of the House of Representatives on the allegation of N75 million fraud in the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), maintained that contrary to impression given to Nigerians by the government on the state of refineries, "none of the refineries is working.''

The four refineries in Nigeria, Ikisikpo said, should be sold because they are now serving as a coduit pipe where hundreds of million naira have been wasted.

"We have been to the refineries and we have just wasted several hundreds million of naira on them. Contrary to impression in some quarters, none of them is working,''he stressed.

Fielding questions from newsmen, the lawmaker who led other members of his committee to Folawiyo depot and loading gantries, Atlas Cove facilities and oil installations belonging to Capital Oil and Gas NIgeria Limited, absolved the NNPC and PPMC of complicity in the allegation of fraudlent dealings.

"We are here on a visit to all these places as a follow up to inviatation which we have extended to the PPMC in realations to allegation published by a newspaper (not vanguard) that a cabal in the corporation was making N75 million every day on a fraudulent dealing,'' he said.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/nov/6/305.html

Nov 8, 2009, 10:50 AM
N5 Billion Scam - EFCC Launches Fresh Investigation Against Neco Registrar

Abuja - It is not yet over for the Registrar of the National Examination Council, (NECO),Prof Promise Okpala,as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has launched a fresh investigation to ascertain his involvement in an alleged N5billion scam against him.

A reliable source in the commission told journalists yesterday that the chairman of the anti-graft commission, Mrs. Farida Waziri, has directed her operatives handling the case to expedite their investigation.

To this end,the source added that some operatives swooped on the Minna headquarters of the examination body recently and arrested its Director of Finance, Mr. Ishola Isaac, who petitioners have accused of having colluded with Okpala to loot NECO funds.

"After he was arrested, the operatives first took Ishola to Tundun Wada Police Station in Minna, before he was later driven to Alovera Hotel also in the city.

"The investigators then conducted an intense search on the hotel, which is said to be owned by Ishola."

Our source did not say whether any incriminating document was found in the hotel.

The EFCC operatives reportedly seized Ishola after they could not locate Okpala, who is said to be playing hide and seek with the commission.

The investigators also arrested and grilled for several hours one Mr. Sina Adetona, who was described as an assistant director in the registrar's office.

"I can assure you that we are determined to get to the bottom of this case. Anybody found culpable will be charged to court," the source said.

It could be recalled that the EFCC in June quizzed five top officials of the examination body over the scam.

They were Mr. Phillip Duru (Director of Exams Administration), Dr. Nasir Dantiye (Director of Corporate Support Services), Mr. Isaac Ishola (Director, Accounts/Finance), Gladys Iyabo Akinkuole (Director, Exams Development) and Adolph Nweke (Director, Quality Assurance).

In their statement to the EFCC at the time, the directors had explained that they were not privy to the scam.

Some of them were said to have accused Okpala of running NECO like a personal property.

They reportedly urged the commission to get to the bottom of the case with a view to bringing anybody found culpable to book.

A petition it received from one Clement Innocent, who claimed to be a staff of the finance and account department of NECO triggered the EFCC's investigation. He alleged a N5billion fraud in the council.

In the four-page petition dated November 30, 2007, Innocent accused the NECO registrar of self-enrichment and fraud. The petitioner alleged that Okpala arbitrarily inflated the monthly salary bill of the organisation from N100m to N400m.

He also alleged that the registrar, on behalf of the council, borrowed N750 million from three banks (names withheld) without permission from the Federal Executive Council or approval from the National Assembly.

The registrar, according to the petitioner, also awarded a N110 million contract to one Chief Okpala Iheanyi allegedly for the setting up of cybercafés in NECO offices nationwide.

The contract, was awarded in breach of government's laid down procedure for contract awards.

The EFCC officials have quizzed Okpala and some other relevant officials of the council over the petition.

The three banks from which the registrar allegedly obtained the N750million loan, according to our source, have also made statements to the commission on the matter.

LINK: http://allafrica.com/stories/200911060446.html

Nov 8, 2009, 10:54 AM
N5.2bn Fraud:EFCC files 130 fresh charges against Elumelu, others

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC yesterday proferred a fresh 130 count charge against Hon. Godwin Elumelu, Senator Nicholas Ugbane and seven others at the FCT High Court, Abuja , for defrauding the government to the tune of over N5.2 billion in the Rural Electrification Agency project.

The nine accused persons have also been separated in the fresh charges. The three lawmakers are jointly facing a 62 count charge while the other six accused are jointly facing a 68 count charge. The three lawmakers are: Hon. Godwin Ndidi Elumelu, House of Representatives Committee Chairman on Power; Senator Nicholas Yahaya Ugbane, Senate Committee Chairman on Power and Hon. Jibo Mohammed.

The other accused persons are Engr. Samuel Ibi Gekpe, Dr. Abdullahi Aliyu, Simon Kirdi Nanle, Engr. Lawrence Kayode Orekoya, Abdulsamad Garba Jahun and Barrister Kayode Oyedeji....

MORE HERE: http://www.vanguardngr.com/2009/10/31/n5-2bn-fraudefcc-files-130-fresh-charges-against-elumelu-others/

Nov 10, 2009, 12:16 AM
N15b fraud: EFCC files fresh charges against TRANSCORP MD, others - Accused lose bid to travel abroad

THE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) will, today, file fresh charges against the former Group Managing Director of Transnational Corporation (TRANSCORP), Mr. Thomas Iseghohi and two others, over alleged fresh discovery of multibillion fraud in the company.

This came as the trio lost in their bid, on Monday, to have their current bail conditions varied to allow them travel abroad to see their families. The proceeding, on Monday, marked the second time in three months that Justice Anwuli Chikere of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja would dash their hope of having their travel documents released to them.

Others standing trial with Iseghohi are Muhammad Buba, Company Secretary and Mike Okoli, Deputy General Manager of TRANSCORP Plc. The EFCC told the court, on Monday, that it would bring fresh charges against the accused because investigations into the management of the company had thrown up fresh facts indicting the trio of alleged corrupt acts.

The anti-corruption agency had, on May 27, 2009, arraigned the trio on a 32-count charge of criminal conspiracy, criminal breach of trust, money laundering and misappropriation of public funds to the tune of N15 billion.

The trial judge granted the accused bail on June 22 on stringent conditions which included a bond of N500 million each and surety in like sum. At the resumed hearing, on Monday, the defence counsel, Amaechi Nwaiwu, prayed the court to reconsider the application dated September 15, 2009, which, among other things, sought the court to grant the accused their travel documents.

In her ruling, Justice Chikere turned down the motion raised by Nwaiwu, affirming that the accused were facing criminal trial. She added that reasons advanced by the defence counsel for the release of the travelling documents of the accused were not substantial.

"Since they are already on bail, their families can come over and visit them here in Nigeria," the judge ruled.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/10112009/news/news7.html

Nov 12, 2009, 01:42 AM
N200b ecological fund: NEC accuses OBJ of mismanagement

GOVERNOR of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Malam Lamido Sanusi said on Tuesday that federal government ownership of any of the ailing bank would be tempory.

Briefing State House reporters after the meeting of National Economic Council (NEC), Sanusi said the first option by the government to the banks was to rescue themselves by raising necessary capital to run their operations.

He however said that if any of them could not help itself, the government would take it over temporarily but assured that the government would relinquish the ownership quickly.

He also said that the Council was briefed by the Central Bank on the shortage of loans to businessmen and that a retreat would hold in December to address the issue.

The meeting, he said urged the CBN to do everything possible to bring down the interest rate in the country. On the ecological fund, Governor Peter Obi of Anambra State who was in the team that briefed the press said it was discovered that the Obasanjo regime was reckless with the disbursement of the ecological fund hence the NEC approved a better transparent way of managing the fund.

He said the rot was between 1999 and 2007 and that President Umaru Yar'Adua has not awarded any contract from the fund since he assumed office.

During the last administration, he went on, some of the contracts were inflated or badly done while some were fake contracts paid for by the government.

Under the new dispensation, state governors would be involved in the processing and award of the contracts as a means of making it more transparent.

Governor Ibrahim Shema of Katsina State, who led the team that briefed journalists said the NEC also approved the report of the presidential committee on land reforms that peasant farmers should hold their land in small groups and use such land as collateral to raise loans.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/11112009/news/news2.html

Nov 13, 2009, 11:53 AM
Minister in trouble over N3.5bn police fund - Companies awarded contracts have no fixed addresses - Reps allege - As EFCC quizzes NECO boss, 2 others over N2.4bn scam

THE House of Representatives, on Thursday, expressed great displeasure with the Minister of Police Affairs, Alhaji Ibrahim Lame, for allegedly misapplying a sum of N3.5 billion out of N5.2 billion appropriated by the National Assembly for the establishment of Strategic Crime Prevention projects in seven cities across the country.

The concerned cities are Lagos, Kano, Maiduguri, Abuja, Port Harcourt and Ibadan, where the police force was to be made more proactive in combating crime.

Committee on Police Affairs, headed by Honourable Abdul Ningi, expressed this concern at the interaction it had with the minister and his team with Deputy Speaker, Honourable Usman Bayero Nafada, in attendance.

According to information, the money was approved for the police before Lame became minister, but members of the Police Affairs Committee were worried that he could spend the huge sum without recourse to the National Assembly.

At the interaction, members expressed shock at the alleged discovery that most of the companies used by the minister for various projects had no fixed addresses, while the projects did not achieve 20 per cent of completion. ...

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/13112009/news/news1.html

Nov 13, 2009, 11:56 AM
Banks record N53 billion frauds

The Nigerian banking sector recorded an increase in the number of frauds and forgeries in the 2008 financial year, the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) has disclosed.

NDIC, in its 2008 annual report released on Thursday, in Abuja, stated that the number of reported cases of attempted or successful frauds and forgeries in the nation banking industry rose during the year under review.

According to the NDIC, the upward trend in the number of reported cases reflected markedly in the total amount involved in 2008 compared to 2007.

In the report, there was a total of 2,007 reported cases of attempted frauds and forgeries involving over N53 billion in 2008 compared with 1,553 reported cases of frauds and forgeries involving N10.01 billion in 2007.

The expected loss componets of the reported cases of frauds and forgeries whose probability of recovery was low and those not fully covered by Fidelity Insurance Bond as required by section 33 of the NDIC Act of 2006, amounted to over N17billion in the year under review

The NDIC , according to the report, said 10 banks with the highest number of reported cases of frauds and forgeries were responsible for 64.11 per cent of the total amount involved in 2008 compared to 25.93 per cent in 2007.

The total amount involved in the 10 banks, which stood at N34.31billion in 2008, was significantly higher than the 2007's figure of N2.59billion, the NDIC report stated

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/13112009/news/news10.html

Nov 19, 2009, 11:55 AM
EFCC storms Abia over N3.3bn scam - Goes after gov's wife, commissioner

OPERATIVES of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) have been in Abia State since last week, in connection with an alleged N3.3 billion contract scam rocking the state.

The commission's spokesperson, Mr. Femi Babafemi, confirmed the presence of the operatives in the state, but declined comments on their mission.

It was, however, gathered from another source that the operatives were laying ambush for the wife of Governor Theodore Orji, Theresa; the state Commissioner for Works and Transport, Kalu Ogbuagu and another government functionary, Mrs. Agu Vivian.

Those being sought in connection with the alleged scam were said to have gone underground when they got wind of the presence of the operatives in the state.

The alleged scam was said to have been blown into the open by an American lady, Mrs. Miranda Nwadei, who was said to be married to a Nigerian.

The American, who is said to be a contractor to the state government, reportedly petitioned the anti-corruption agency, following an alleged underhand dealing in a N3.3 billion contract given her by the state government to supply 1,500 units of Chevrolet cars.

It was gathered that after the contract was signed, the wife of the governor allegedly called her to a meeting and requested that she should assist the first family in opening a coded bank account in the United States for the purpose of transferring money from Nigeria.

The American lady was said to have rejected the proposal, reportedly saying that the American government would jail her if she did so.

From this point, the state government reportedly started dragging its feet on the execution of the contract, with a source in EFCC saying that "they had no intention of getting her to supply any car; the contract was simply to siphon public money."

Before the contract was sealed with her, it was said that she had been made to part with N11.8 million by the commissioner of transport under the guise of making her to pay contract fee which, according to the commission source, "had no documentation".

The contractor was also said to have imported four units of the Chevrolet car and made them available to the state government as sample, with the governor's wife reportedly collecting three of the cars while the fourth was said to have been collected by the commissioner.

The commission's operatives were said to have recovered the car with the commissioner, while access was said to have been denied to the three with the governor's wife.

It was when nothing was forthcoming from the state government despite the supply of sample and payment of contract fee that the American reportedly petitioned the anti-corruption agency.

The commission is also said to be probing the text messages exchanged among the governor, his wife and the American lady over the alleged proposal made to her on the opening of the coded account as well as the car supply contract.

According to the source, "The governor's wife and others went underground immediately they got wind of our operatives' presence in the state. We will continue to search for them until we get them."

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/nov/18/623.html

Nov 20, 2009, 04:54 AM
N3.4bn Police Fund: Pa Olusola Saraki's case file disappears at EFCC

• Perpetual injunctions bane of EFCC operations – Waziri

The case file on the alleged N3.4 billion financial transgression of Olusola Saraki, Chairman of defunct Societe Generale Bank (SGB), is reportedly missing from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in Abuja

Saraki ran into trouble with the EFCC in 2007 when its former Chairman, Nuhu Ribadu, declared him wanted over alleged fraud.

The EFCC also said money meant for policemen was trapped in the bank.

Saraki's case file at the time stated that he in 2004 allegedly tricked the former Inspector General of Police (IG), Tafa Balogun, into depositing in SGB money belonging to police officers, including funds for pension and gratuity.

EFCC Spokesman, Femi Babafemi, explained on Wednesday that there might not have been any case file on Saraki, and if there was one, there was no way it could go missing.

What is documented, however, is that the EFCC invited him for questioning in 2007, but he failed to show up, which made the Commission to declare him wanted.

Saraki, former Senate Leader, is a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kwara State, where his son, Bukola, is Governor.

Investigation at the Lagos and Abuja offices of the EFCC showed a catalogue of cases EFCC Chairman, Farida Waziri, inherited from Ribadu in 2008.

Some of the files, listed below, do not include that of Saraki.

Former Ekiti State Governor, Ayo Fayose. Case file opened on December 17, 2007. Arraigned at the Federal High Court, Lagos on 51 counts. Granted N1.2 billion bail in 2007. Defence lawyer keeps filing application for long adjournments to frustrate trial.

Former Health Minister, Adenike Grange. File opened on April 2, 2008. Arraigned at the Abuja High Court on 56 counts. Granted N300 million bail in 2008. Defence lawyer often seeks long adjournments to prolong trial.

Former Minister of State for Health, Gabriel Aduku. File opened on April 2, 2008. Arraigned at the Abuja High Court on 56 counts. Granted N300 million bail in 2008.

Senator Iyabo Obasanjo-Bello. File opened on April 2, 2008. Charged to the Abuja High Court on 56 counts. Granted N10 million bail in 2008.

Former Plateau State Governor, Joshua Dariye. File opened on July 13, 2007. Charged to the Abuja High Court on 14 counts. Granted N700 million bail in 2007.

Former Jigawa State Governor, Saminu Turaki. File opened on July 13, 2007. Arraigned at the Abuja High Court on 32 counts. Granted N36 million bail in 2007.

Former Abia State Governor, Orji Uzor Kalu. File opened on June 11, 2007. Arraigned at the Federal High Court, Abuja on 107 charges. Granted N5 million bail in 2008.

Former Edo State Governor, Lucky Igbinedion. File opened on January 23, 2008. Charged to the Federal High Court, Enugu on 191 counts. Applied for plea bargain and convicted, but the EFCC appealed to seek stiffer sanctions.

Former Taraba State Governor, Jolly Nyame. File opened on July 13, 2007. The Federal High Court, Abuja convicted him on 21 counts. He lost at the Appeal Court, but has appealed to the Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, Waziri on Wednesday identified the judiciary as the key to the successful elimination of corruption, describing as frivolous, injunctions granted by some courts that are inimical to the justice system.

She advocated a fundamental rethink of the battle against graft at the Judges' conference in Abuja, where she warned that Nigeria may not realise its vision of becoming a developed nation if sleaze is not tackled headlong.

Her words: "I believe and rightly so, that judicial officers are partners of the Commission in overpowering those I call barbarians within the gates of the system. These are the corrupt individuals that stand in the way of economic progress of the country and will, at all times, corrupt the system for their selfish needs and greed.

"Judicial officers must help this country because so much hope is reposed in them. I believe that the proper, judicious, courageous, and innovative use of judicial powers can achieve results.

"I earlier cited the case of Bode George where a conviction was secured within 15 months or so and will want to contrast it with other equally important cases which were filed and have been pending for over four years not moving beyond the plea stage.

"I believe that the only difference lies in the innovative and judicious use of the powers of the courts. The courts can deny the corrupt the comfort of enjoying their ill gotten loot by ensuring that they do not abuse basic remedies provided in law for good cause.

"I speak of the grant of exparte injunctions which undermine investigations. At the moment, we are battling with several court orders restraining the Commission from ever investigating certain individuals and corporate bodies.

"We are yet to understand the legal reasoning behind a High Court restraining the Commission from carrying out its statutory duties, particularly in the face of notable pronouncements on this point to the contrary by the highest court of the land.

"I speak of perpetual injunctions which, in some cases, have become permanent immunity for some people who are under investigation, even where they have lost their Constitutional immunity."

Waziri noted that the EFCC under her leadership has secured over 75 convictions, recovered over N240 billion funds, and embarked on anti-corruption enlightenment campaigns.

She reiterated the need for the creation of Special Courts to hasten trial in corruption cases.

LINK: http://odili.net/news/source/2009/nov/19/404.html

Dec 9, 2009, 02:29 PM
$11b Missing From Joint Venture Account –Reps

An estimated sum of $11 billion revenue, which accrued from the Joint Venture (JV) involving the Federal Government and multinationals operating in the country on sale of crude oil, is said to be missing.

From documents available to the House Committee on Finance headed by John Enoh, the sum of N5.8 billion was realised from the JV, while N5.9 billion was paid by the Federal Government over the past 11 months.

But in his presentation, however, Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mohammed Barkindo disclosed that an estimated sum of $15.545 billion was realised as at November 2009 out of the $16.8 billion projected revenue for the year.

Chairman of House Committee made the observation during an interactive session with Finance Minister, Mansur Muktar; Minister of State for Finance, Remi Babalola; Chairman, Revenue Mobilisation and Fiscal Allocation Commission (RMFAC), Hamman Tukur; Deputy Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Tunde Lemo; and representative of the National Petroleum Investment Management Services company (NAPIMS), Victor Briggs.

Others at the meeting were Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Elizabeth Emurem, who represented Minister of Petroleum Resources, Lukman Rilwan; among others. Austin Oniwon, NAPIMS director-general represented Mohammed Barkindo of NNPC.

Enoh, who expressed concern over increase in the money expended on JV cash call annually, stated that Nigeria had been running the JV on deficit despite the huge sum expended by the Federal Government. He disclosed that $5 billion was proposed in the 2010 budget, while the same amount was provided for in the 2009 budget but with no generated revenue accruing to the federation account since September 2009.

According to Enoh, "it is useless for us to be producing oil any more if all we produce is to be used to pay for cost. If it's going to be costly to produce oil, it is better we concentrate on other things.

"In the last couple of years all daily production of oil has been on the decline, while JV call cash had been on the increase. We need to know why it is so and why the obligation to JV calls is on the increase at the expense of issues concerning Nigerians," he said.

To ascertain the actual amount accruing from the sale of crude oil, Tunde Lemo of the CBN promised to make available all records of money that accrued from sale of crude oil to the committee within 24 hours.

Speaking further, Barkindo's representive Austin Oniwon, stated that the $7.2 billion was requested for by NNPC for JV cash calls for 2010, adding that only $5 billion was approved by the Federal Government.

He said the country had witnessed increase in crude oil production as a result of the amnesty programme and repair of oil installations blown by militants in the Niger Delta region, which raised cost of technical cost from $29 upward.

Earlier, Hamman Tukur, RMFAC chairman, faulted claims by the NNPC just as he urged lawmakers to ensure accountability of revenue from crude oil and sale of petroleum products.

He disclosed that about $1 billion excess payment made by the Federal Government was discovered by the Nigerian Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (NEITI) in 2005, adding that there was need to investigate the actual amount required to fund the JV with a view to ascertaining the claims of agencies responsible for the project.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/DailyIndependent/Article.aspx?id=4733

Dec 12, 2009, 02:46 AM
Bafarawa stole N15bn, not N5bn – EFCC, - N700m fraud: EFCC slams 64 fresh charges against UBEC directors, others

IN the case prepared against the detained former governor of Sokoto State, Alhaji Attahiru Bafarawa, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), accused him of stealing N15 billion public funds, the Nigerian Tribune can confirm.

The case, which is already at the registry of the Federal High Court, Abuja, is awaiting assignment to a judge. When he was arrested by the operatives of the commission last Wednesday, the figure of the alleged fraud was put at N5 billion.

The commission slammed him with a breach of public trust, financial mismanagement, money laundering, abuse of office and outright theft totalling N15 billion. The commission, also, on Thursday, got the nod of an Abuja chief magistrate's court to detain him beyond 48 hours.

Chief Magistrate Kabir Lamido, while ruling on an application brought by the anti-corruption commission, ordered that Bafarawa be remanded till December 24, 2009.

However, information from the commission showed that he would be arraigned early next week. A source disclosed that the commission decided to seek a remand order so that the law would not be breached in keeping him, since it was unlikely that the arraignment would take place today as earlier planned.

In some of the allegations against him, the commission accused the former governor of conspiring with others to sell the state's shares in United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc without any approval by the state executive council as required by law.

He was also accused of unilaterally selling the state shares in state-owned Cement Company of Northern Nigeria (CCNN) to his younger brother, Alhaji Nasir Dalhatu Bafarawa, without the executive council's approval.

Bafarawa, according to the case file, was equally said to have conspired with others to withdraw N89 million from the state education resuscitation account without the approval of the state executive council.

Another N349 million was reportedly withdrawn in a similar fashion from the account of the state Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC).

The alleged illegal withdrawal was said to have been extended to the state and local government joint account, where N2 billion was allegedly withdrawn by him, unilaterally for personal use just like other withdrawals.

He was also accused of converting his personal bank account into a state account, had public money paid into it and remained the signatory to the account for the eight years he was in office.

The former presidential candidate also allegedly awarded a controversial contract to his wife and brother-in-law. The contract was said to have been awarded without any tender, with the award not following due process.

Commission's spokesperson, Mr. Femi Babafemi, confirmed that Bafarawa was still in the anti-corruption agency's custody.

In a related development, the EFCC filed fresh 64-count amended charge before the Federal High Court, Abuja, against Professor Bridget Omotunde Sokan, former Executive UBEC and three other directors, on Thursday.

The directors are Molkat Manasseh Mutfwang; Michael Mtonga Aule and Dr Andrew Ekpunobi. Also arraigned with them were Intermarkets USA; Intermarkets Nigeria Limited and Alexander John Cozma, a foreign contractor. The accused, who were all present in court, pleaded not guilty after listening to the charges.

Professor Sokan and Intermarkets Nigeria Limited were arraigned for the first time on Thursday.

EFCC's prosecuting counsel, Abdulwahab Shittu, had earlier told the court that "the 64-count charge as against the initial 26-count filed against the suspects was due to fresh documents discovered in the course of further investigation by the anti-graft agency." He prayed the court to remand the accused in custody while he also asked the court to set aside between two and three days for accelerated trial considering the alleged overwhelming evidence against the accused.

The defence counsel, D.J Akomolafe, however, prayed the court to grant bail to Professor Sokan, hinging his argument on the fact that all the earlier accused had been granted bail.

The prosecuting counsel opposed the request, arguing that for the accused to be granted bail, the defence counsel had to apply for the release and bail of the accused as well as come formally before the judge by way of affidavit and provide supporting documents.

After listening to the arguments, Justice Bello granted bail based on the former conditions. The bail conditions are for the accused to provide the sum of N100 million each, one surety each in like sum. The surety must be the owner of a landed property within Abuja and deposit his titles documents in court. The accused were also barred from travelling abroad as they were to deposit their travel documents with the court.

Defence counsel for Alexander John Cozma, J. O. Odubele, told the court that based on an application filed before the court on December 1, 2009, leave be granted to the accused to undergo medical treatment abroad. But the prosecuting counsel pleaded with the court to deny the application, saying that the accused, being a foreigner, might abscond. The judge then adjourned the case to December 15, 2009, for hearing.

Apart from Professor Sokan and Intermarkets Nigeria Limited, the five other accused were first arraigned on May 19, 2009 on a 26-count charge but were later granted bail.

LINK: http://www.tribune.com.ng/11122009/news/news3.html

Dec 12, 2009, 02:49 AM
EFCC Quizzes 33 Oyo LG Chairmen

All the 33 local government councils chairmen in Oyo State have been invited by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over allegations bordering on financial offences.

Details of the allegations were yet to be known as at the time of going to press, but it was learnt that the local government bosses had been regular callers at the office of the anti-graft agency in the last two weeks.

The situation, it was learnt, had discomfited some of the local government chairmen to the extent of threatening to resign from office ahead of the expiration of their tenure next year December.

Attempts to speak with the state Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Hosea Ayoola Agboola on the matter proved abortive, as he told our reporter that he was attending a meeting when called on his mobile number.

Speaking on phone with Saturday Independent, the EFCC spokesperson, Femi Babafemi confirmed the invitation of the local government bosses, stressing that the chairmen were being quizzed by his agency as well as the Independent Corrupt Practices and Related Offences Commission (ICPC).

When probed further to disclose the specific allegations upon which the chairmen were being invited, he explained that he did not have the details saying, "investigation is ongoing."

Sources close to the councils, who spoke with our reporter on condition of anonymity, however informed that the invitation by the anti-graft agency might not be unconnected with various petitions on the way and manner the councils' funds were being administered through the state Joint Account Committee.

The sources recalled that questionable projects like the tarring of five kilometre roads by each of the councils at a whooping sum of N250 million and the recently purchased drilling machines for each of the councils had been undertaken through the said committee, which the source said did not go down well with those opposed to them

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/DailyIndependent/Article.aspx?id=4931

Dec 12, 2009, 03:03 AM
N7.4bn fraud: Court orders arrest of Martins, Dumuje, others

An Abuja High Court yesterday issued a bench warrant against Kenny Martins and three others over the alleged misappropriation of the Police Equipment Fund.
The court presided over by Justice Mwada Balami ordered the police to produce Martins and the three others before him for them to be re-arraigned on fresh charges after they were set free by an Abuja Magistrate court.

Those expected to be produced by the police before the court alongside Martins for arraignment include Ibrahim Dumuje, Joni Icheka and Cosmos Okpara.
Already, a fresh two-count charge of conspiracy and forgery have been proferred against them.

It would be recalled that few weeks back, a Magistrate Court sitting in Abuja discharged the accused persons for lack of diligence prosecution by the police.

However, the Magistrate court did not acquit them.

The charges filed against them by the Attorney-General of the Federation through the chambers of Mr Festus Keyamo read thus:

"That you Kenny Martins, Ibrahim Dumuje, Joni Icheka ‘m', and Cosmas OKpara ‘m' on or about the 31st day of March, 2006 at Corporate Affairs Commission Wuse Zone 5, Abuja within the jurisdiction of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, did conspire amongst yourselves to commit a felony to wit: forge documents relating to Corporate Affairs Commission in a bid to fraudulently change the members of the Board of Directors of NIGERSTALG LIMITED, original partners with the Federal Government on the Police Equipment Fund and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 97(1) of the Penal Code, Cap 532 Laws of the Federation Nigerian 1990 (Abuja).

However, Mr. Keyamo, insisted that the law at present is that the accused persons must be physically present in court before any objection could be raised based on the most recent decision of the Court of Appeal in the case of Anthony Alintah & 2 Ors v. F.R.N (unreported Appeal No. CA/L/194/2004) and Section 187 of the CPC.

To this end, the court upheld his argument and issued a bench warrant for the arrest of the accused persons.

The matter has been adjourned to 13th January, 2010, for their arraignment.

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/2009/12/12/n7-4bn-fraud-court-orders-arrest-of-martins-dumuje-others/

Mar 4, 2010, 10:10 AM
Reps Accuse Minister Of Inflating N4b Airport Contract To N63b

Members of the House of Representatives on Wednesday accused Minister of Aviation, Babatunde Omotoba, of cashing in on the absence of President Umaru Yar'Adua from the country to inflate an airport contract of N4 billion to N63 billion.

According to them, within about 90 days of the President's stay in Saudi Arabia, where he was receiving medical attention on a heart problem, the minister connived with certain persons in government to carry out the fraudulent act.

This is just as they have mandated their Committee on Petroleum Resources to seek warrant of arrest on the Minister of Petroleum, Rilwan Lukeman, Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Muhammed Barkindo, and head of Petroleum Product Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) if they continue to flout their (Reps') directives and invitations.

The House Committee had complained that the officials were in constant habit of ignoring their summons.

In a plenary session, members agreed that due process was waved in the award of the Abuja Airport Second Runway and that the contract sum was blown up to the N63 billion.

Their decision followed a motion by Dino Melaye (PDP Kogi), which called for thorough investigations by relevant committees of the House.

Chairman, House Committee on Aviation, Bethel Amadi, would however expand on the allegations in a briefing today, and is likely to seek prosecution of those alleged to be involved in the contract inflation to a German construction firm.

After exhaustive debate on the motion, members agreed that the International Civil Aviation Control Authority should also be invited to assess the project and compare it with the contract sum as against what is obtainable elsewhere in the world.

In his contributions, Amadi told members that investigations by his committee revealed both the design and the building plan of the second runway was wrong and that level playing ground was not provided for the bidders for the contract.

According to him, the contract sum of N63 billion equivalent to $423 million was not only too expensive but high and outrageous when compared to what is obtainable elsewhere in the world.

He cited example of a recent complete airport built in Ethiopia at the cost of only $130 million and another one in Thailand also for $130 million equivalent of N18 billion.

LINK: http://www.independentngonline.com/DailyIndependent/Article.aspx?id=9716

Mar 4, 2010, 10:17 AM
Ex-Gov Adamu, 18 others docked over N15bn fraud

Former governor of Nasarawa State, Alhaji Abdullahi Adamu was on Wednesday arraigned along with 18 others before a Federal High Court, Lafia, on a 149-count charge by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC).

The suspects were arraigned before Justice I.M. Buba for allegedly looting the state treasury to the tune of about N15 billion during Adamu's eight year tenure as governor.

Others arraigned alongside the former governor were: Alhaji Halilu Bala Usman, Alhaji Usman Aboki, Prince Nicholas Ukachukwu, Prince and Princes Limited, Jonabel Engineering Nigeria Limited, JCC International, Mbani Construction Company Limited, Shinco Nigeria Limited, Henry & Nick Associates Limited, Water Search Nigeria, Sneccou Group of Companies, Nicas Industry Limited, Addais Nig Limited, Faslan Ventures Limited, Yoojin Nigeria, Kiagama Coy Limited, Sharafa Bros Nig and Riok International.

Count one of the 149 count charge reads: "That you Alhaji Adamu Abdulahi whilst being the governor of Nasarawa State and Alhaji Aliyu Bala Usman, whilst being the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs in Nasarawa State between May 1999 and May 2007 and 2002 to 2007 respectively, within the jurisdiction of this honourable Court, agreed to do or to cause to be done an illegal act to wit, authorized directly, effect or procure the withdrawal of the sum of N2, 456,000,000.00 in 36 months from the State Local Government Joint Account for a purpose and in a manner not authorized by law and that the same act was punishable under Section 516 of the Criminal Code Act.

Count two reads: "That you, Alhaji Abdulahi Adamu whilst being the governor of Nasarawa state and Alhaji Halilu Bala Usman, whilst being the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Nasarawa State between May 1999 to May 2007 and 2002 to 2007 respectively within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did authorize, direct, effect or procure the withdrawal of the sum of N2, 456, 000,00.00 in 36 months from the State/Local Government Joint Accounts, belonging to 13 Local Government Councils of Nasarawa State contrary to Section 7(6) (A), 162 (5), (6), (7) and (8) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, the Local government laws of Nasarawa State and the Joint Account Law, intending therefore to cause injury to the public and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 104 of the Criminal Code Act.

After reading the charges to the accused, defence counsel, Barrister Pius Akubo argued that they would need time to study the charges before taking of plea, as they were only served few minutes before proceedings.
He also pointed out that only three of the 20 accused were in court, even as one of the accused, Baba Gbefwi's name was missing from the list of the accused on the charge sheet.

But prosecution counsel, Adeniyi Akintola, SAN, argued that the other suspects not physically present in court are companies used by the human suspects to perpetuate the criminal act. He therefore urged the court to adjourn for a few hours to enable the defence study the charges against them and take their plea accordingly.

After listening to arguments from both counsel, Justice Buba adjourned proceedings for one hour. At the resumed hearing, the Judge ruled that the prosecution had a duty to amend the charge sheet by including the missing name and properly serving the charges on the defence.
While adjourning the case till March 15, 2010, the judge also, against the prayers of the prosecution, granted the accused bail in the sum of N500 million and two sureties who must have landed properties within the jurisdiction of the court; and who will guarantee that the accused would not frustrate the diligent prosecution of the case against them

LINK: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2010/mar/04/national-04-03-2010-024.htm

Mar 4, 2010, 10:26 AM
N2.4bn Napep contract documents missing –Kpakol

The contract documents and agreements for the N2.4 billion for tricycles (Keke) under the National Poverty Eradication Programme (NAPEP) contract are missing, National Coordinator of the Programme, Dr. Magnus Kpakol has announced.

Dr. Kpakol, who announced this yesterday evening when he appeared before the Senate Committee on Public Accounts treating the audit queries raised by the Auditor-General of the Federation, said the contract documents, which were signed in 2001, were not available by 2003 when he assumed office.

According to Dr. Kpakol, "When I came into office, I did not find them. The contract was signed in 2001. I can't find the document, it was done before I got there and I looked for it and I couldn't find them."
However, members of the committee rejected the position of Kpakol insisting that the coordinator of NAPEP to produce and present the agreement by today to ensure that the terms of the contract are complied with.

According to the chairman of the committee, Senator Ahmed Lawan, "I don't believe you don't have the agreement. How do you know whether the contract was supposed to be a continuous thing? How did you continue the implementation and how did you know the terms of the contract and what the contractor is supposed to do?"
Also speaking on the matter, another member of the committee, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, said that the contract agreement was necessary to prove whether the contracts were executed and thus urged Dr. Kpakol to look for the contract agreement, stressing that his defence was tied to the contract agreement.

In his defence over the approvals for the payment of the N2.4 billion upfront, Dr. Kpakol explained that he did not need another approval to disburse the funds in view of the approval by the President to proceed with the contract that covered the payment.
The explanation by Kpakol was again not accepted by the committee members who insisted that Kpakol should appear before it with a document to prove that there was an approval for the release of funds.

In the words of senator Lawan: "The release of N2.4 billion for the contract as far as we are concerned remains an illegal expenditure until there is a document approving it. The onus is on you to prove that you have the approval otherwise it is illegal."
The Auditor General of the Federation had stated in his audit report that the tax element to Federal Inland Revenue Service on the N2.4 billion contract being the mandatory five per cent withholding tax and five per cent VAT amounting to N240 million were ignored thereby giving rise to loss of revenue to the government.

However, Dr. Kpakol told the senate committee that the development was as a result of a Presidential waiver on the taxes to ensure that the burden on the poor beneficiaries were lighter even as he could not submit any document showing the Presidential waiver when the committee required it.
At this juncture, the Senate Committee Chairman, Senator Lawan, said that the probe of the NAPEP contract as queried by the Auditor-General's office would be concluded when the needed documents are presented to counter and nullify the queries.
Senator Lawan also warned that if NAPEP failed to produce the documents before the Committee, its report would be against the agency.

LINK: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2010/mar/04/national-04-03-2010-023.htm

Oct 26, 2010, 10:23 AM
Just when you think it cant get worse...

Foreign loan scam: States get refund for excess deductions

By Hugo Odiogor

Fresh facts have emerged of how Nigerian government officials colluded with foreign banks and financial institutions to rip the country off in the pretext of repayment of external debts.

This revelation is coming as Federal Government embarks on another process of taking $29 billion loan to finance growth which it could not initiate or finance when it had a hefty external reserve profile.

Some of the state governments that fell victim of this well organised debt repayment scam have begun to receive the refund for the excess deductions made on their statutory allocations by the Federal Government for the purposes of repayment of the foreign debt by the Obasanjo administration.

Ironically, House of Representatives last week kicked against President Goodluck Jonathan's request for $29 billion external loan "to finance growth" which sources said is another ploy by Aso Rock to find resources to fund the 2011 general elections through the back door.

Adamawa, Taraba get 90% refund
Vanguard can authoritatively inform that Adamawa and Taraba states have received over 90% of $444 million deducted in excess amount creamed off from their monthly statutory allocation for repayment of the dubious foreign loans.

There is a refund of another $104 million non-existent loan presumed to have been obtained from an Austrian bank by the old Gongola State "to build an International Hotel in Yola".

It turned out that some government officials cooked the document as the said Austrian bank wrote to say that they "had no business interest in Africa let alone Yola."

Investigations revealed that as at June 2005, Adamawa State government was credited to owe N254,227, 920.00 while Taraba State was said to be owing N142,409,347.56, but in actual fact some of these figures came from loans from doubtful sources.

Sources at the Debt Management Office in Abuja confirmed that the two states have been paid the excess deductions and Niger State was next in line.

LINK: http://www.vanguardngr.com/2010/10/foreign-loan-scam-states-get-refund-for-excess-deductions/

---------- Post added at 06:18 PM ---------- Previous post was at 06:08 PM ----------

FG squandered N50 trillion in 10 yrs, CNPP alleges

The Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP), on Monday, alleged that over N50 trilion made in the last decade from oil revenue, Federal Inland Revenue, customs duty and sundry sources had been squandered under what it called ‘Food is Ready' economic policy of the Federal Government.
It alleged that it was more painful that the over $30 billion left in the Excess Crude Account as well as the over $60 billion left in the Foreign Reserves Account, as of May 29, 2007 by the previous administration had been reduced to less than $1billion in the Excess Crude Account and less than $30 billion in the Foreign Reserves Account.

Speaking through its national publicity secretary, Osita Okechukwu, the group said it wholeheartedly considered the recent Fitch BB-Minus rating of the Nigerian economy as unstable and in the negative as the truth and nothing but the true position of the economy.

CNPP also called on the Minister of Finance, Mr Olusegun Aganga, to admit the Fitch's BB-minus rating of the Nigerian economy as one sliding dangerously to negative paradigm, as a true assessment.

Stating that it viewed the BB-Minus negative rating as a wake-up call, call to duty and call for introspection, the group noted that it was at a loss why President Goodluck Jonathan and the finance minister should wait for the passing of the Nigerian Sovereign Wealth Fund Bill to escape from BB-Minus rating of Fitch

LINK http://tribune.com.ng/index.php/news/12648-fg-squandered-n50-trillion-in-10-yrs-cnpp-alleges

---------- Post added at 06:23 PM ---------- Previous post was at 06:18 PM ----------

Moses Kpakol and his NAPEP again...

N417m scandal rocks NAPEP

Contrary to a recent claim by the leadership of the National Poverty Eradication Programme (NAPEP) Daily Sun can authoritatively confirm that there is indeed a N417 million scandal presently rocking the programme to its very foundation.
According to documents available to Daily Sun, the money, which has variously been alleged as either missing or stolen, which NAPEP incurred as it tried to cut corners and side track its original promoters in a bid to take the business off them.
At the centre of the raging scandal is the procurement and distribution of the now popular Keke NAPEP (tricycles).

NAPEP which was established in 2001 by former President Olusegun Obasanjo with an executive fiat is the primary agency charged with the responsibility of coordinating and monitoring all poverty eradication activities nationwide. However, the agency in the last few weeks has been involved in various forms of financial scandals that point accusing fingers at its leadership.

According to the findings of an internally constituted committee believed to have been recently set up by the leadership of NAPEP under the National Coordinator, Dr. Magnus Kpakol, NAPEP had amassed a staggering debt of N417m through unpaid debts owed to it by Keke Operators and Riders Association of Nigeria (KORAN).
This, according to the investigation, was shocking, since the initial arrangement for the sale of the tricycles was based on a pre-payment arrangement that did not give rise for any debt.

According to finding which have also gone as for as the National Assembly, a few insiders within NAPEP, in a secret more to edge out a company originally given the right to import and distribute the poverty eradication tricycles had over looked the laid down procedure for its procurement and sale, and in the process brought a whopping N417 million debt on NAPEP.
Things have become so muddled up that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has been brought into the matter.
Among the things the commission is set to unravel is why the licencee of the Keke NAPEP, Autobalm Techniques Limited, which originally floated the idea and actually won the contract to supply the tricycles sudden failed to supply the third tranche after promptly supplying and disbursing the first two batches.

It also wants to know how the contractor could get such a huge job without a formal contract from the federal government. EFCC also desires to authenticate an existing contract said to have been signed on behalf of NAPEP by Kpakol but which the National Coordinator is alleged to have repudiate. There is also a subtle move to unearth how all these relate to the security factionalisation of KORAN, the alleged threat of the Customs to auction the Keke tricycles which have since been trapped at the ports since the controversy began.

Although the Kpakol leadership had initially denied the debts, it still went ahead to constitute the high powered committee to find ways of retrieving the debts.
The committee discovered that KORAN had been supplied a total of 3,190 by the contractor amounting to N802,042,719.50 less insurance, training and handling charges. However, KORAN had remitted a total of N475,519,500 which unfortunately could not be proved because it lacked any evidences of remittances to NAPEP. Also, KORAN could not produce a draft or cheque for the balance sum of N326,523,219.50 claiming to the committee that they had problems with their bankers.

More Here: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2010/oct/26/national-26-10-2010-002.htm

Nigeria on my mind
Oct 26, 2010, 03:09 PM

You've done a great job highlighting the pervasive corruption in Nigeria. Now I must ask you the question that I have posed to myself so many times, and that I ask other Nigerians when they decry Nigeria's woes. What are you going to do about it? I am directing the question to you but it is really intended for all Nigerians. What are we going to do about our country? Our rulers are robbing us blind, awarding contracts to foreign countries for products and services when these monies should be going towards developing small-scale manufacturing in Nigeria. Many of our women have been compelled by severe privations to embrace prostitution, while kidnapping and other vices, once considered anathema, have overtaken cities previously known for small scale manufacturing and commerce. Our rulers show no inclination towards rectifying these maladies. Are we going to continue criticizing them, or are we going to do something about them?

I have come to the conclusion that there are three kinds of Nigerians:

1. The crooks looting the treasury (i.e. our politicians and other officials).
2. The selfish, apathetic cowards (i.e. me and you who are waiting for the country to be fixed so that we can swoop in and cash in).
3. The few Nigerians who still appreciate decency and the concept of right and wrong.

We have been lamenting the unenviable state of our country for a long time, but the inescapable fact remains that you are a product of your society, and your own self worth is a reflection of that society. If our politicians are corrupt and our people inclined towards delinquency, it is because our apathy aids and abets their actions. We are just as flawed as they - guilty of apathy, selfishness and cowardice - afraid to risk our lives and our personal comforts to effect the changes that should be incumbent on people driven by true love for their country. In a sense we are even worse than our rulers they because we know what the problems are, yet we make no concerted attempts to solve them.

If we truly loved our country, we would try to transform her rather than blaming our leaders. As long as we do nothing, we are just as corrupt and narcissistic as they are.

Oct 26, 2010, 03:47 PM
Nigeria must be the strangest society where we watch treasury looters trive with reckless abandon,but very quick to linch petty thieves. Where then is JUSTICE???. Funny enough, there is always the law of retributive justice for these acts. Would these people ever believe or learn?? Na wao.......Keep a keen eye and watch these people and what becomes of them afterwards. It has always been massive destruction. So somebody must be watching. And he is God or Allah depending on your belief.

Oct 28, 2010, 01:51 PM
N7.4bn fraud: Prepare to face trial, court tells Dariye

An Abuja high court on Wednesday told a former governor of Plateau State, Mr. Joshua Dariye, to be prepared to face trial over charges of stealing and misappropriation of public funds totalling over N7.4 billion preferred against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and stop filing frivolous applications in various courts to stall his trial.

The presiding judge, Justice Adebunkola Banjoko, submitted that Dariye had already lost at the appeal court where he filed a suit challenging the jurisdiction of the FCT high court, and so the coast was now clear for her to proceed with the trial.

However, as part of the antics to stall the much-prolonged trial, counsel to the accused, Mr. Chris Umar, told the court that Dariye had filed another application at the Supreme Court challenging the ruling of the appeal court.

But the EFCC counsel, Adebin Adewuyi, told the court that the anti-graft agency had not been served and prayed the court to proceed with the trial in line with the ruling of the appeal court, which had asked the accused to return to the lower court to face trial.

LINK: http://tribune.com.ng/index.php/news/12777-n74bn-fraud-prepare-to-face-trial-court-tells-dariye-

---------- Post added at 08:16 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:04 PM ----------

N2.4bn NAPEP contract scam: EFCC urged to expedite action on investigation

The African Poverty and Hunger Relief Initiative has called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to expedite action on the N2.4 billion National Poverty Eradication Programme (NAPEP) contract scam.

The group also called on the EFCC to ascertain the circumstances surrounding the alleged diversion of over N1 billion through substandard tricycles and non-supply of 1,310 units of tricycles.

The director of programmes and projects of the group, Daodu Adesoji, while addressing a press conference in Lagos State, accused NAPEP of unholy alliance with the contractors that handled the supply of the tricycles .

Adesoji stated that the Federal Government had in 2007 awarded the contract for the supply of 5,000 units of tricycles as part of measures to eradicate poverty in the country.

He, however, stated that rather than the contractor supplying the stipulated number of motorcycles, only 3,190 were supplied.

He further added that just 500 units of the supplied motorcycles met the required standard, while 3,190 tricycles were substandard and had reportedly wrecked thousands of people.

LINK: http://tribune.com.ng/index.php/news/12768-n24bn-napep-contract-scam-efcc-urged-to-expedite-action-on-investigation

---------- Post added at 09:51 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:16 PM ----------

@ 9ja on ma mind,

Nna, this your kweshion hard small o o.. You wan make i try Gideon Orka? I am just trying to buttress the point that corruption is the oil that fuels Nigeria. You have a point though; power concedes nothing without a fight. Having said that, my belief is that Nigeria will sink under the weight of massive corruption. And when I talk of corruption, I mean all kinds of corruption, from looting the treasury through massively rigging elections to deliberately shortchanging constituent units in dispensing government services. Nigeria is a peculiar case. Few people are looting everything in sight. The national assembly that just raised their allowances the other day are planning to do so again! It is better to prepare for the unfolding events than to be too inquisitive with a "pre-emptive" act and end up rupturing a very predictable cycle that is fast coming to an end.

I just read a report of cash meant for the military disappearing in transit! Those are the kind of things that will undo Nigeria. When corruption becomes too massive, it starts to respect no sector of the society and people you wouldn't expect to get involved will start 'soiling' their hands too. That means that security budgets will be threatened too, maintenance budgets will be pilfered and even salaries will start to go missing. When you get to that state, it is a matter of time before something gives because it is either people who guard the state cant find enough pleasure with their jobs and will support/be complescant a/to change or the state cant effectively arm herself as the times demand to withstand any cohesive threat. I guess OBJ sensed this and dodged the Bakassi conflict. The corruption in the Niger Delta JTF also proves that. You might not notice that easily, but Nigeria is slowly slipping away from "their" hands. It is on and when Nigeria runs her full course, things will definitely come to a head

Nov 28, 2010, 01:11 PM
Bank=ole again...

N3tr missing from treasury –Bankole

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Dimeji Bankole, has said that investigation by the National Assembly revealed that ministries, departments and agencies (MDSs) of the Federal Government did not remit N3 trillion collected by them as revenue to the treasury.

The Speaker stated this in Benin while delivering the 35/36th Convocation Lecture of the University of Benin. According to the him, the renewed commitment of the National Assembly to oversight activities with respect to tracking and monitoring of budget implementation, has led to the recovery of over N750 billion unspent funds in two years.

"Before now, such discoveries and re-channeling of the unspent funds for the good people was unheard of," Bankole said, adding that the National Assembly maintains that the rule of law, which is one of the tenets of democracy, must be followed.

Quoting the 2010 UNDP Human Development Index, which ranked Nigeria 142 in the Low Human Development Category out of 169 countries surveyed globally, the Speaker observed that with a reservoir of highly talented and resourceful persons, the country has no business being identified with nations on UNDP Low Human Development Category. He therefore solicited for investment in education, saying that the nation stood to benefit from positive development of increased investment in education.

"It is a known fact that without quality research, which results in improvement in Science and Technological inventions, we cannot solve the multi-faceted problems of development currently starring Nigeria in the face," the Speaker said. Bankole, while disclosing that the electoral reforms initiated by the National Assembly were targeted at greater transparency and credibility of elections, called on Nigerian youths to refuse to be used for rigging and political violence by self serving politicians.

He advocated for a return to the practice of fiscal federalism as the basis for speedy development of the country, pointing out that a situation where Councils and some States become active only after they return from the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee meeting in Abuja was not sustainable. Bankole said the current efforts of President Goodluck Jonathan, especially in the areas of power supply, critical infrastructure and electoral reforms, have combined to commence the process of laying a solid foundation for sustainable national development

LINK: http://www.sunnewsonline.com/webpages/news/national/2010/nov/28/national-28-11-2010-007.htm

Nov 29, 2010, 09:45 AM

All around looting...

How NIMASA DG wasted billions, by auditors
Monday, 29 November 2010 00:00 Habeeb I. Pindiga | Daily Trust (http://www.dailytrust.dailytrust.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=7428:how-nimasa-dg-wasted-billions-by-auditors&catid=2:lead-stories&Itemid=8)

Director-general of the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency [NIMASA] Mr. Temisan Omatseye and the agency's board circumvented due process by splitting, overpricing and awarding contracts worth billions of naira beyond their approval threshold, according to a forensic audit report into the agency's activities recently submitted to its parent Ministry of Transport.
The contracts were awarded in local currency worth N5.127 billion and in dollars worth $1.863 million (equivalent to N279 million) from January to June this year, according to the 19-page report exclusively obtained by Daily Trust in Lagos at the weekend.

Mr. Omatseye and two directors of the agency detained and questioned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Wednesday last week in connection with the allegations, but were released on administrative bail last Friday.

EFCC's spokesman Femi Babafemi said Omatseye as well as NIMASA's director of Finance Malam Jarma Bulama and the director of Procurement Alhaji M.K. Shehu all had their passports seized.

The audit and investigation report commissioned by Transport Minister Alhaji Yusuf Sulaiman said NIMASA awarded 451 contracts during the period at the total cost of N5.4 billion. The report also said it detected fraud in refunds, cash advances and supplies.

Contracts approved beyond the threshold as set by the Bureau for Public Procurement [BPP] were valued at N2.437 billion, in addition to another set of dollar-denominated contracts worth $1.863 million.

The report said out of these figures, the director general awarded contracts worth N236 million and the board of the agency approved the award of contracts worth N2.237 billion.

"This grossly violated the extant rules and regulation guiding the award of contracts as stated on the Federal Government of Nigeria Financial Regulation F 2905 and the thresholds prescribed by the Bureau for Public Procurement. The Director General unilaterally approved contracts valued at N236, 068, 400.00 and $1, 863, 000," the report said.

Contracts split during the period, apparently in order to avoid the tenders board, were worth N223 million, the report said. "Evidence shows conclusively that there were deliberate acts of contract splitting.... If proper procedure was followed, this (split contracts) would have gone to the parastatal's tender's board," it added.

The report said between January and June, a total of N130 million "was unjustifiably filtered away due to gross overprice of contracts." In January, it said, "a contract for the supply of a 2000 KVA Perkins generator was awarded to Daniel Holdings Ltd at the sum N129, 294, 080 while the market price for that generator specification is N89,000, 000, a drain of about N40,000, 000 from the coffers of the agency.

"Anchor Offshore Services Ltd on 1/2/2010 was awarded a contract to supply 100 units of Blackberry smart phones at the cost of N22,050, 000 while the going market rate for the most expensive Blackberry set is about N120,000. About N10,000, 000 was drained out of the system due to this overprice.

"Diesel Oil (Ago) meant for generators were supplied at the rate of N149.3 per litre, while the market rate during the period under review was N114/litres. Judicious spending was thus jettisoned."

Other expenditures questioned by the report include printing and stationery (N48.5 million), furniture maintenance (N29.8 million) and board/committee operational expenses expenditure (N32.5 million).

The audit also alleged what it called "flagrant abuse of disbursement procedure" in cash advances, where about N337 million was paid out as cash advances to settle purchases and other sundry transactions during the period, in contravention of the Financial Regulations of the Federal Government.

It gave instances of such cash advances to include N13 million paid in February to Lawal Saidu to carry out various repairs and maintenance work, and the payment of N9.5 million to Abraham Dike as cash advances to supply ship safety equipment and spare parts.

"These are just two examples of an inappropriate procedure in existence. Government funds are paid into private accounts which contravened the provision of FR 713 of the Financial Regulation of the Federal Government of Nigeria," it said.

The audit said also that there was "abuse of due process" in "doubtable" refunds of about N59million, including N2.25million to Nwokocha C.N as refunds for concept designs and media coverage expenses and N1.2million to Danjuma Dauda as payment made by him on behalf of the agency for the Ministerial Committee on Investigation of allegation of delay on waiver processing on cabotage implementation.

In March, N131million was paid in one day to different suppliers as the cost of office equipment supplied, where the report said the agency "simply flung its bank accounts open to various interests."

The report said there was fraud in the payment into a single bank account to various contractors, like in January and February when a total of about N102 million meant for several contractors was credited to a single account at Wema Bank. Also, about N207 million as payment for various contractors was credited to one Wema Bank account. "These payments were all approved for payment by the agency's approving authorities," the report said.

In June, NIMASA's EcoBank account was overdrawn by N99, 926, in contravention of the Financial Regulations of the Federal Government which stipulates that no government account shall be overdrawn.

The report recommended appropriate sanctions for the director general and all other contract approving authorities "for the deliberate and flagrant violations of extant government rules and regulations governing the award of contracts." It urged that law enforcement agencies be brought in to investigate and prosecute those found to be behind the alleged fraud.

The audit report was prepared by a firm of chartered accountants, Akin Omorodion & Co., which was mandated by the Federal Ministry of Transport to audit contract awards by parastatals and agencies under the ministry.

Jan 27, 2011, 08:11 AM
While Obasanjo and Ribadu "fought" corruption..

Nigeria lost $130bn to corruption in 8 years -US Report

NIGERIA might have lost 130 billion dollars from 2000 to 2008 to illicit financial flows, a new report issued by US-based group,

Global Financial Integrity (GFI), said.

The report, entitled "Illicit Financial Flows from Developing Countries: 2000-2009,'' said Nigeria had the 10th highest measured illicit outflows in the developing world, an average of 15 billion dollars per year.

The North America correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported that the GFI report ranks countries according to magnitude of illicit outflows.

According to the report, China is ranked the highest country of measured illicit outflows in the developing world with 2.18 trillion dollars, followed by Russia, 427 billion dollars, and Mexico, 416 billon dollars.

The report also shows the annual outflows for each country and breaks outflows down into two categories of drivers: trade mispricing and "other," which includes "kickbacks, bribes, embezzlement, and other forms of official corruption."

Others in the top 10 are Saudi Arabia, 302 billion dollars; Malaysia, 291 billion dollars; United Arab Emirates; 276 billion dollars; Kuwait, 242 billion dollars; Venezuela, 157 billion dollars, and Qatar 138 billion dollars.

Primary findings from the report said illicit outflows increased from $1.06 trillion in 2006 to approximately $1.26 trillion in 2008.

It found that approximately $6.5 trillion was removed from the developing world from 2000 through 2008.

According to the report, average annual illicit outflows from developing countries averaged 725 billion dollars to 810 billion dollars per year, over the 2000-2008 period measured.

"Illicit flows increased in current dollar terms by 18.0 per cent per annum from 369.3 billion dollars at the start of the decade to 1.26 trillion dollars in 2008.

"When adjusted for inflation, the real growth of such outflows was 12.7 percent," it said.

The report put real growth of illicit flows over nine years in the African region at 21.9 per cent, compared with 24.3 per cent in the Middle East and North Africa, 23.1 per cent in developing Europe, Asia 7.85, and Western Hemisphere 5.18 per cent.

The author of the report, Dev Kar, a former International Monetary Fund (IMF) economist, said bribery, theft, kickbacks and tax evasion were the greatest conduit for the illicit financial flows.

He said oil exporting countries were becoming more important sources of illicit capital.

GFI director, Raymond Baker, said every year, developing countries were losing 10 times the amount of Official Development Assistance (ODA) remitted for poverty alleviation and economic development.

"This report measures the quantity and pattern of these harmful outflows and provides stark proof of the impact of these illicit financial practices," Baker said.

GFI said the authors of the report used a World Bank model to calculate developing countries' missing billions.

LINK: http://tribune.com.ng/index.php/front-page-news/16717-nigeria-lost-130bn-to-corruption-in-8-years-us-report

Jan 27, 2011, 10:55 AM

Only $130billion in a decade? Wetin de happen?

Thanks, nice to see an update on your corruption thread. But make you no vex. Nigeria was created for loot.

!!! Get Yours !!!

Son of the Delta
Jan 27, 2011, 02:57 PM
What has Ribadu got to say about this report?