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Edo Foils Arson Attempt Over Probe Into N30b Storm Water Project

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Edo Foils Arson Attempt Over Probe Into N30b Stormy Water Project
Officials of the Edo State Government evacuating vital documents after security operatives foiled arson attempt at Palm House, along Sapele Road, in Benin City, on Tuesday, February 23, 2021.

The Edo State government on Monday night deployed security operatives to safeguard the premises of the State Government Secretariat also known as Palm House, in Benin City, following intelligence reports of an arson attempt at the Ministry of Environment and Sustainability offices, to destroy critical documents pertaining to the N30 billion Benin storm water project.

Governor Godwin Obaseki had during an inspection of the Textile Mill Road catchment of the storm water project on Monday morning vowed to set up a panel to investigate how money meant for the project was spent, decrying that the project was conceived by the previous administration in the state to defraud Edo people.

The Secretary to the State Government, Osarodion Ogie, in a statement, reassured that the government will ensure that it uncovers the details surrounding the project and its execution and also assured that all those culpable are brought to justice.

Ogie noted, “Following the commitment of the Edo State Government to probe the N30 billion Benin storm water project, the state received intelligence of a possible arson at the offices of the Ministry of Environment and Sustainability, which houses vital documents on the project.

“The government immediately deployed security operatives to guard the premises of the Ministry overnight to protect its assets.

READ ALSO: Ekiti Set To Deliver Regular Power Supply – Fayemi
“We have successfully evacuated these vital documents to a safe location to ensure their integrity and in readiness for a probe.

“Government will ensure that it uncovers the details surrounding the project and its execution and also assure that all those culpable are brought to justice.”

“We will do right by Edo people as always and work assiduously to ensure that our people get value for our money as regards the execution of the N30 billion storm water project,” he reassured.

Earlier, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Mr. Lucky Wasa, who led the team to guard the premises of the Ministry overnight and to evacuate the vital documents ordered “that all files stored at the registry and other offices be sorted out and removed from the building to a more secured location to ensure that no body sabotages the planned probe by Governor Godwin Obaseki.”

The Permanent Secretary noted, “Please ensure that all files relating to Benin City Water Storm Project are sorted out; enter all the files and their numbers into a paper. We are taking them away to a more secured location.”

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Court Jails APC Senator Seven Years For Fraud

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Court Jails APC Senator Seven Years For Fraud

The Senator representing Delta North Senatorial District at the National Assembly, Peter Nwaoboshi of the All Progressives Congress (APC) , has been sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment.

The Court of Appeal in Lagos on Friday also ordered that the senator’s two companies, Golden Touch Construction Project Ltd and Suiming Electrical Ltd, be wound up in line with the provisions of Section 22 of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2021.

The court’s ruling was delivered in an appeal challenging the judgment of Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke of the Federal High Court which on June 18, 2021, discharged and acquitted the defendants on two counts of fraud and money laundering. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) which arraigned him however challenged the lower court’s decision.

EFCC had arraigned the three defendants over the acquisition of a property named Guinea House, Marine Road, in Apapa, Lagos, for N805 million.

 READ ALSO: Why Move To Impeach Senate President Will Fail – Nwaboshi

Part of the money paid to the vendor – N322 million transferred by Suiming Electrical Ltd on behalf of Nwaoboshi and Golden Touch Construction Project Ltd – was alleged to be part of proceeds of fraud.

Earlier in his judgment, Justice Aneke said the evidence of the prosecutor “proved that the third defendant obtained a loan of N1.2 billion from Zenith Bank to purchase additional equipment and as provision of working capital”.

“It also proved that the loan of N1.2 billion together with interest of N24 million was properly granted to the third defendant .Nothing else was proved by the complainant or prosecutor in this case,” the EFCC quoted the judge as saying in a statement.

The high court judge was also quoted as claiming that a fatal blow was dealt to the case of the prosecution by its failure to call officials of Sterling Bank “to testify and probably tender exhibits F and F10. Consequently, he discharged and acquitted the defendants”.

However, ruling on the EFCC’s appeal on Friday, the Court of Appeal held that the trial judge erred in dismissing the charges against the respondents.

“The court said the prosecution had proved the ingredients of the offence and consequently found the defendants guilty as charged,” EFCC said.

 

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Drama In Court As Lawyer Appears In Priestly Attire

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VIDEO: Drama As Lawyer In Priestly Attire Appears In Court

By John Michael Ojo
There was a mild drama today at the Okpoko Magistrate Court in the Ogbaru Local Government Area of Anambra State, as a lawyer simply identified as Ogbachalu Goshen appeared before the court in a pastoral robe.

But Ogbachalu who was standing before the magistrate, CB Mbaegbu, was denied  hearing on the ground that he was not properly attired, leading to a minor incident in the court.

READ ALSO: Female Students Can Wear Hijab To Lagos Schools – Supreme Court

However,  citing a recent Supreme Court’s judgment which supported the wearing of hijab by female students in public schools as a reference point, Ogbachalu reminded the court that it was his right to dress in his priestly attire as he was an ordained pastor and that the objection by the court to hear him, was an infringement on his fundamental human right as enshrined in section 38 of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria

The magistrate however disagreed his submission which only forced the court to dismiss.

 

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Court Orders Immigration, Banks To Release David Ukpo’s Details To Ekweremadu

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Court Orders Immigration, Banks To Release David Ukpo's Details To Ekweremadu

To enable detained former Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu to effectively defend himself in London, a Federal High Court in Abuja on Friday ordered the Nigerian Immigration Service and three banks to immediately release details of David Ukpo to him.

Justice Inyang Ekwo issued the order while delivering judgment in a suit instituted by Ekweremadu and his wife, Beatrice.

The judgment against the defendants followed their non-appearance in court to defend the suit.

By the court order, all official information including the account opening package in relation to Ukpo are to be released to Senator Ekweremadu to ascertain the real age of the said Ukpo.

READ ALSO: Real Age Of Ekweremadu’s Kidney Donor – Immigration

Ukpo had claimed at a London court that he was a minor of 15 years old which led to the arrest and detention of the Nigerian Senator.

Other defendants are the Comptroller General (C-G), Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS); Stanbic-IBTC Bank, United Bank of Africa (UBA), and Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System Plc as 2nd to 5th respondents, respectively.

 

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