Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)
senator representing Delta North senatorial district, Peter Nwaoboshi, on Monday lost temporarily his 12-storey building at 27 Marine Road Apapa to the federal government.
The forfeiture order was given by Justice Abdulaziz Anka of the Federal High Court in Lagos.
The court order was sequel to an application filed before the court by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and argued by its counsel, George Chia-yakua, against Senator Nwaoboshi and his two companies; Golden Touch Construction Project Limited, and Bilderberg Enterprises Limited.
In urging the court to grant the application, Chia-yakua, told the court that the application was pursuant to section 44(2)(k) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), and Section 28 and 29 of the EFCC (Establishment) Act 2004.
The EFCC counsel further told the court that the commission received a petition from an anti-corruption group, ‘Anti-Corruption and Integrity Forum’, against the senator and his companies on alleged money laundering.
The EFCC in an affidavit by Garuba Yusuf Abubakar stated that it carried out investigations at the Code of Conduct Bureau in Abuja, banks, Delta State Governor’s office, Delta State Tenders Board, Nigeria Customs Service, Lagos State Ministry of Lands, Federal Inland Revenue Services, and Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).
The commission said its aim was to trace the movement of funds suspected to be proceeds of illegal activities, source of funds, and the beneficiaries.
The deponent stated that sometimes in 2010, the Tender Board of Delta State awarded a contract to the senator’s company, Bilderberg Enterprises Limited to buy new construction equipment for Delta State Direct Labour Agency, at the sum of N1. 58 billion.
But rather than buying new equipment, Nwaoboshi’s company imported and supplied used equipment to the agency, while the Delta State government fully paid for new one.
The deponent further stated that upon investigation, it was revealed that the senator moved the proceeds to various accounts linked to him, and his company bought the said 12-storey building formerly known as Guinea House, located at 27 Marine Road, Apapa, Lagos at the sum of N805 million, with the use of his company, Golden Touch Construction Project Limited.
The Secretary to Delta State government confirmed the sale of the building to the senator’s company.
He also stated that the senator completed and submitted the Code of Conduct Bureau Asset Declaration Form on June 19, 2015, where he stated that he acquired the said Guinea House, Apapa, by being a Director in the Golden Touch Construction Projects Limited.
When the EFCC team wrote to CAC seeking information on the directors of the company, it was revealed that the senator is neither a shareholder or director in the company, while the purported directors and shareholders, Nwanbuoku Ike and Emma Ekpon denied their directorship.
The deponent also averred that further investigation revealed that the senator has 20 bank accounts as shown by his Bank Verification Number (BVN), while his private companies have 23 accounts.
Justice Anka after listening to the submission of the EFCC counsel, ordered that the 12 storey building located at 27 Marine Road, Apapa, Lagos be temporarily forfeited to the federal government pending the outcome of EFCC investigation.