N5bn Scam: No Money Traced to Goje’s Account, Says EFCC Investigator

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By Alex Enumah in Abuja

An investigator with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Solomon Okotie, has told a Federal High Court sitting in Jos that  his investigation revealed that no money from the award of contracts in Gombe State could be traced to the account of the immediate past Governor, Senator Danjuma Goje.

Okotie, who is the Prosecution Witness 1 (PW1), made the revelation at the resumed trial of Goje who is being prosecuted by the EFCC for allegedly embezzling N25 billion. 

The EFCC investigator further informed the court that due process was followed in the award of contracts in Gombe State during Goje’s tenure as governor.

Under cross-examination from counsel to Goje, Chief Chris Uche (SAN), Okotie stated that “with specific reference to the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), there was a letter from the commission that it approved the action plan and the award of contract.

 

The witness also admitted that having obtained the contractor’s bank statement and studied same and confirmed that the monies covered by the vouchers went into the account of the contractor, Real and Integrated Hospitality Company which is Zenith Bank.

Okotie also stated that at the end of his investigation, he did not trace one naira from the contract money to any account belonging to Goje, any company or person related to him.

He declared that the contracts for which the former governor is standing trial were fully executed.

The second prosecution witness who is the Solicitor-General and Permanent Secretary in the Gombe State Ministry of Justice Bar. Magellan Dedi had in his testimony told the court presided over by Justice B.O Quadiri that he was informed by the state UBEB officials that due process was followed in the award of the contract and that he was made to understand that the former Attorney-General received instruction from the 1st defendant (Goje) to terminate the contract for non-performance within the stipulated time of three months.

 Specifically, the EFCC is prosecuting Goje over allegations that he conspired with others sometime between May 2003 and May 2001 in Gombe to misappropriate the sum of N5billion property of the state government which was, or in whole or part, directly represented proceeds of an illegal act contrary to Section 17 of the Money Laundering  (Prohibition Act) 2004.

Other charges include: “That you Alhaji Danjuma Goje “m” former Governor of Gombe State sometimes between May 2003 and 2011 in Gombe within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court committed an offence to wit; converted the sum of N5,000,000,000 property of Gombe State and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 14 of the money laundering prohibition act 2004.

“That you Alhaji Danjuma Goje “m” former Governor of Gombe State Nigeria sometimes between May 2003 and 2011 in Gombe within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court committed an offence to wit; converted the sum of N1,920,000,000 property of Gombe State and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 17 of the money laundering prohibition act 2004.

“That you Alhaji Danjuma Goje “m” former Governor of Gombe State, Alhaji Aliyu Ubadone El-Nafaty “M” former Executive Chairman of the UBEC, and others  sometimes between May 2003 and 2011 in Gombe within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court committed an offence to wit; with an attempt to convert, conspired among yourselves and others to conceal or disguise the sum of N830,725,685.82 property of the UBEC,  an agency of the federal government which was, or in whole or in part, directly or indirectly represented proceeds of an illegal act contrary to section 17 of the money laundering prohibition act 2004.

  • kinsly

    Thisday media, home and mouthpiece of the criminal politicians. Always misreporting and misrepresenting information to favour the crooks who have looted us to death.