SPONSORED BY CHIQUEMAGAZINE.COM: The Federal Government has banned the importation of vehicles into the country through land borders.
In a statement on Monday in Abuja, Mr Wale Adeniyi, the Nigeria Customs Service Public Relations Officer, stated that “the prohibition order covers all new and used vehicles”.
Adeniyi also said the ban was sequel to a presidential directive restricting all vehicle imports to Nigeria’s Sea ports only, adding that the order takes effect from Jan. 1, 2017.
“The restriction on importation of vehicles follows that of rice; import of rice through land borders has been banned since April 2016.
“Importers of vehicles through the land borders are requested to utilise the grace period until Dec. 31, 2016 to clear their vehicle imports landed in neighbouring Ports,” Adeniyi said.
SPONSORED BY HIRING234.COM: The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is set to re-arrest and prosecute a former Governor of Delta State, Mr. James Ibori, who will complete his sentence in a prison in Britain on December 20, 2016.
Barring last minute changes, Ibori will be arraigned on 170 charges bordering on money laundering and corruption.
A Southwark Crown court had on April 17, 2012, sentenced Ibori to 13 years in prison after the ex-governor pleaded guilty to 10 counts of money laundering and stealing $250m from the treasury.
Following his conviction in the UK, there were criticisms of the Nigerian justice system ,especially an Asaba High Court which had struck out 170 charges which the EFCC had brought against Ibori.
However, the EFCC took the matter to the Appeal Court where a three-man panel of justices on May 15, 2014, at the Benin Division of the Court of Appeal ruled that the ex- governor, who is currently serving a 13-year jail term in a London prison, has a case to answer.
The appellate court panel, led by Justice Ibrahim Saulawa, ordered that the case be re-assigned to another judge of the Federal High Court for continuation of trial.
The EFCC subsequently said in a statement in 2014 that the ex-governor would be re-arrested upon the completion of his prison sentence.
The EFCC statement read, “With this judgment, the coast is clear for Ibori to face trial in Nigeria upon the completion of his jail term in London.”
Attempts to speak with the EFCC spokesman, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, on Saturday proved abortive.
However, a source at the EFCC told our correspondent that the legal department of the commission would have to look into the matter again.
He said, “Indeed Ibori still has a case to answer but it will be reviewed and charges might be amended.”
However, legal luminary, Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN), told our correspondent on the telephone that there was no need prosecuting Ibori again.
Sagay, who spoke in his personal capacity and not as the chairman of President Muhammadu Buhari’s anti-corruption committee, told our correspondent that Ibori had already been punished and prosecuting him again could amount to human rights abuse.
He said, “It will be constitute double jeopardy because he was been punished according to the law and any attempt to arrest him and make him go through the process a second time will be unconstitutional.
Some of the possessions confiscated from the ex-governor include: a house in Hampstead, North London, worth £2.2m; a property in Shaftesbury, Dorset, for £311,000; a £3.2m mansion in Sandton, near Johannesburg, South Africa; a fleet of armoured Range Rovers valued at £600,000; a £120,000 Bentley Continental GT; and a Mercedes-Benz Maybach 62 bought for €407,000 cash.
When contacted on Saturday, spokesperson for the AGF, Mr. Salihu Isah, told our correspondent that he needed to hear from the minister before he could react.
“It is the AGF that can take such decision, I need to hear from him first,” Isah said.
SPONSORED BY 234NAIRA.COM: The Gambia’s President-elect Adama Barrow held talks with his team Saturday to plot his transition to power, with the release of political prisoners emerging as a top priority for the new administration.
Barrow’s shock election victory ended the iron-fisted 22-year rule of Yahya Jammeh on Friday, and the scenes of jubilation on the streets after the results were released have given way to a calm but buoyant mood in the capital Banjul.
Jammeh’s rule over the tiny ex-British colony — which began with a coup in 1994 — was marked by frequent allegations of rights abuses and the regular arrests of politicians, journalists and activists, often on spurious charges.
Barrow, a businessman and political novice, met with the eight leaders who make up the coalition that sealed his remarkable rise to power in Thursday’s vote, with the talks focusing on the challenges facing the administration.
The talks went “very well, we are reflecting on the way forward,” said Isatou Touray, one of the leaders.
Touray said the release of political prisoners was the “most urgent” issue facing the new government, with expectations this could happen very soon.
“We are looking at next week,” she said.
The leader of the main opposition United Democratic Party (UDP), of which Barrow is a former member, is appealing a three-year jail sentence he received with several other UDP officials for holding a peaceful protest in April.
Touray added the team expected the United Nations to play a key role in smoothing the transition that will see Barrow, a businessman who once worked as a security guard as an economic migrant in Britain, take office in mid-January.
“We will try to get the UN to give us support,” Touray told AFP by phone. “It is urgent, we need to have it as soon as possible.”
Ibn Chambas, the UN’s west Africa representative, said meetings with the opposition had been fruitful, raising expectations of a government that would reverse some of Jammeh’s policies that have isolated The Gambia internationally.
Barrow has pledged to rejoin the International Criminal Court and the Commonwealth, both institutions which Jammeh railed against and withdrew from, to the dismay of many.
The UN envoy also said he was “willing to work with the Gambians to establish a truth and reconciliation commission”, but would not be drawn on whether Jammeh could face prosecution.
Allegations of rape, torture and execution at the hand of the National Intelligence Agency, which reports directly to Jammeh, have long tarred The Gambia’s image.
Barrow told French media Saturday that “we are not witch-hunting anybody, nothing is personal” when asked whether Jammeh would be prosecuted.
Due process would be followed, Barrow said, adding he had “no problem” with the outgoing president remaining in The Gambia.
The strongman’s whereabouts are currently unknown after Gambian television broadcast an unexpected statement to the nation in which he promised he would step down in line with voters’ wishes.
Jammeh congratulated Barrow late Friday for his “clear victory” in a jovial conversation that saw him joking about becoming a farmer in his hometown, with the exchange caught on film and broadcast.
It was a shock for many to see Jammeh, who had promised to bury critics “nine feet deep” and whose regime has prosecuted peaceful protesters, calmly accept defeat.
After late-night victory parties held by many Gambians to celebrate Jammeh’s departure after Barrow swept 45 percent of the vote, life was returning to normal.
Sulayman Drammeh, a dock worker, summed up the mood: “We are very happy. Twenty-two years is enough,” he told AFP at a Banjul market.
“That’s why Africa has a problem — if you come to power, you don’t want to move. We are all Gambians, so let’s come together to work,” Drammeh added.
The coalition will govern for three years with Barrow as its figurehead, after which elections will be held and he will step down in line with a memorandum signed by all the parties involved.
“My party will continue but I’m not part of the process,” Barrow pledged to media Saturday when asked about the three-year commitment. “I’m a businessman, I’ll continue my business,” he added.
Greeting UN officials and working with the European Union on development plans will be a completely new experience for Barrow, who until Friday had never held office or even held a senior role within a political party.
SPONSORED BY X365TV.COM: Gambia’s opposition candidate Adama Barrow has won the presidential polls with 263,515 votes, beating the incumbent Yahya Jammeh, with over 50,000 votes.
The country’s electoral commission in announcing the result of the election held Thursday today, said Jammeh scored 212,009 votes
The commission’s chair, Alieu Njie said Mama Kandeh, the third candidate in the running, came third with 102,969 votes.
Barrow, a real estate developer is a surprised winner of the election, ending the 22 year old reign of incumbent Yahya Jammeh.
“What we see in this result is a change of government. The incumbent will call the new president to congratulate and wish him well,” Njie said.
Jammeh has ruled the tiny African country for 22 years with an iron fist and was widely accused of corruption and human rights abuses.
Gambians voted on Thursday amid total blackout of the Internet and all international calls, and with land borders sealed in a poll that posed the first serious challenge to Jammeh since he seized power in a coup in 1994.
Earlier this week, Jammeh said “my presidency and power are in the hands of Allah and only Allah can take it from him.”
Security forces deployed heavily in Banjul since yesterday and counting was slow.
Early results had shown that Yahya Jammeh had lost ground in the capital, his traditional stronghold.
However, opposition leader Barrow scored a symbolic victory in the capital Banjul, highlighting the strong challenge posed to Jammeh, who is standing for a fifth term.
Jammeh, 51 years old shot his way to power 22 years ago. The man who calls himself His Excellency Sheikh Professor Alhaji Doctor Yahya Abdul-Azziz Jemus Junkung Jammeh Naasiru Deen seized power in a 1994 coup d’etat.
He was elected President in 1996 and re-elected in controversial polls in 2001, 2006, and 2011.
A deeply devout Muslim, Jammeh grew up in the western village of Kanilai in 1965, the year that The Gambia, a long east-west sliver of land bordered by Senegal, gained independence from Britain.
He joined the army in 1984 — his military title is the only one he has lost.
Ten years later, Jammeh mounted a coup with fellow army officers against Dawda Jawara, who had ruled the country since independence, pledging to root out corruption and hold elections.
SPONSORED BY X365TV.COM: The Ondo State governor-elect, Chief Rotimi Akeredolu, on Wednesday, said he did not acknowledge a national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, in his victory speech on Sunday because it was not expedient to do so.
He said having acknowledged President Muhammadu Buhari, who is the recognised national leader of the party, and the National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, it was safe to infer that he had acknowledged all the party’s leaders.
Akeredolu said this while answering State House correspondents’ questions shortly after he and his deputy, Mr. Agboola Ajayi, met Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
They were led to the meeting, which was their first after their victory, by the Chairman of the All Progressives Congress Campaign Council in Ondo State, Governor Simon Lalong.
The governor-elect, who said the relationship between him and Tinubu was cordial, explained that mentioning the name of the former Lagos State governor specifically would have amounted to him mentioning the names of about 37 other leaders of the party.
He said, “On the names that were mentioned in my speech when expressing gratitude and that I didn’t specifically thank Bola Ahmed Tinubu. I thanked the President and the leader of our party profusely for the leadership which he showed leading to this election.
“I also thanked our indefatigable chairman for standing by the truth and for his position on this matter that led to this election. I have no reason to do otherwise.
“Party structure, to the best of my knowledge, is very clear. You have the leadership of the party and that is represented by Chief John Odigie-Oyegun.
“After an election, a chief executive emerges, he becomes a leader of the party, you don’t have to personalise and be looking for leaders all over the place.
“If we have to do that, then I will have to mention 36 or 37 leaders. So, I believe the leadership as represented by the President covers all leaders and that tells me it would include Chief Bola Ahmed Tinubu, it would include even Baba Akande, (Ogbonnaya) Onu, and so many leaders.
“But President Buhari is the leader of the party. So, that is my position there.”
Akeredolu, however, added that Tinubu remained one of the leaders of the party, noting that he (Tinubu) had since sent congratulatory message to him after he won the election.
“For me, as a person, I believe he is one of the leaders of the party and I don’t see any strained relationship between us. And you would observe that he has sent in his congratulatory message after the election, so what else do you expect?
“I mean all of us see this as a victory for the APC, not for Akeredolu, not for us an individual but for the party as a whole. I believe he is a member of the party. Mr. Femi Adesina had issued a release but you journalists just want to put words into our mouths,” he said.
Akeredolu also said despite his decision not to probe the administration of the outgoing governor, Olusegun Mimiko, he would not close his eyes if he stumbled upon established cases of wrongdoing in the course of carrying out his responsibilities as governor.
He explained that what he said on the matter was that he would not deliberately go out to probe Mimiko’s administration.
He said, “At the centre, the government of President Buhari said we must look back in order to move forward, he has been there for over a year now, has he instituted a probe?
“Looking back is not a probe and I maintain that I will not probe any administration. This is responsible leadership and I am elected to lead the people.
“The task ahead of us is enormous than for us to start instituting probes. My own is not to institute any probe against the last administration and that is what President Buhari has done.
“But if we find out that wrongs were committed, we have enough laws of the land to take care of people who have committed wrongs.
“As we start our work, as we go ahead, if there is any semblance of ‘Dasukigate’ in the state, the law will take its course. That is different from probing. We will follow what Mr. President is doing at the centre.”
The governor-elect also promised to implement his manifesto in line with the reality on the ground.
That, he said, did not mean that he would not deliver on all the five cardinal programmes he promised the people.
On Senator Yele Omogunwa who left the PDP for the APC, Akeredolu said the lawmaker had joined his campaign trail and that he only formalised his defection on the Senate floor on Wednesday.
He said it would have been wrong for the lawmaker to remain in a factionalised party like the PDP.
Lalong had earlier said that he was in the Presidential Villa to present the governor-elect and his deputy to the President.
He said he would also be visiting the national headquarters of the APC to do the same thing to party leaders.
The governor-elect again said the APC was not responsible for the confusion over the candidacy of the PDP ahead of the election.
He said, “It was not the APC that went to court neither was it the APC that gave the judgment, all we saw was friction or conflict between the PDP and the PDP.
“If that judgment was going to help the APC, so be it. But we were not parties to the case for somebody to even assume that the APC was responsible for denying somebody.
“The APC is not the court; the court is a separate arm. I am saying that as far as we are concerned, the APC was not responsible for denying anybody the right to contest that election.”
Meanwhile, Akeredolu on Wednesday pledged his loyalty to Odigie-Oyegun, whom he said he owed a debt of gratitude.
Akeredolu said this at the APC national headquarters, Abuja, where he presented his certificate of return to the leadership of the party.
Akeredolu also promised to work towards ensuring that the party repeats the same feat during the next governorship election in neighbouring Ekiti State.
He said, “I owe you, my national chairman, a lot. You have done well, I will be loyal. I remember during my campaigns; I said that immediately we win Ondo, we will move en mass to win Ekiti.”
Responding, Odigie-Oyegun urged the governor-elect to ensure prompt payment of outstanding workers’ salaries as soon as he resumes duty.
Odigie-Oyegun said, “People who work deserve their pay and I hope that would be your first priority.”
SPONSORED BY X365RADIO.COM: Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode on Tuesday presented the 2017 budget of N812.99 billion to the State House of Assembly for approval.
The budget, tagged: “Golden Jubilee Budget” is N150.4 billion higher than the 2016 budget which stood at N662.58 billion
The 2017 budget has a Capital Expenditure of N512.46 billion and a Recurrent Expenditure of N300 billion.
The Capital and recurrent ratio of the budget stood at 63:37.
The governor said a large chunk of the budget would be expended on road construction and rehabilitation, health, among others.
Ambode recalled that his administration budgeted N662.58 billion in 2016 and that the budget, as at October 2016 performed to about 77.5 percent, which is equivalent to N350 billion.
According to Ambode, “we have maintained a conservative approach in estimating our Federal Allocation due to falling oil prices that was about$41.98per barrel at the time we finalized this budget; however the State expects an increase in Federal allocation through 13% derivation from Oil and Gas in 2017.
“In view of our financing gap, we shall continue to sustain deficit financing in the short-to-medium term; enhance revenue growth throughout the year on several initiatives including automation and efficient revenue administration.
“We would explore more collaborations with local and international investors through Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) especially in the areas of Road network expansion, Transport; Housing, and the Environment,” he said.
Ambode said the sectoral allocations as proposed in this budget would be distilled further by the Commissioner of Finance later in the day.
“We will equally continue implementing the ease of doing business reforms – starting a business, property registration, tax payment, e-GIS/ Smart City project, continue to encourage investments in Lekki Free Trade Zone (FTZ), Badagry Deep Sea port and the Eko Atlantic project. We will remain steadfast in our responsibility to make the State safe and secure for all our citizens. We will continue to invest in Security. The Neighbourhood Safety Agency will become fully operational by 2017 with presence in all our Local Governments and LCDAs,” he added.
The governor said a key focus of the budget for the 2017 is road construction, rehabilitation and maintenance, saying that the government would focus on roads that would open up the hinterlands, improve connectivity in the State and reduce travel time.
He added that government would commence the Phase II of the 114 Local Government Roads project and the Fourth Mainland Bridge in 2017, adding that in the course of the 2017 Financial Year, “we shall carry out fundamental reforms on all our modes of transportation – roads, water and the walkways. In this wise, a Public Transport Infrastructure Bond will be issued in the course of the year.”
Ikeja—The Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos yesterday heard a witness describe how foreign currency was moved from Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia chambers and deposited into her account in Diamond Bank. According to reports Mr Ademola Oshodi was testifying at the ongoing trial of Ofili-Ajumogobia, a serving Justice of the Federal High Court, and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), alongside Mr Godwin Obla.
The duo, who are being tried by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for alleged corruption, have been jointly charged with two counts of perverting the course of justice. Obla, was charged with additional two-counts of offering gratification in the sum of N5million to Ofili-Ajumogobia, a public official while carrying out her duties as a judge. Ofili-Ajumogobia, however, faces a 26-count charge of unlawful enrichment, taking property by a public officer, corruption by a public officer, forgery and giving false information to an official of the EFCC.
The accused persons both denied all the charges. The EFCC alleges that between 2012 and 2015 Ajumogobia received a total of 788,000 dollars from various sources into her Diamond Bank Account with number 0032091183. While being led in evidence by counsel to the EFCC, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo, Oshodi told the court that he met Ofili-Ajumogobia at her chambers at the Federal High Court when he opened an account for her with the bank. Oshodi, a Branch Manager with Diamond Bank Plc, is the account officer to Ofili-Ajumogobia.
The banker alleged that he often visited the justice’s chambers and also her home whenever she needed his services to make such deposits which was mostly in dollars. “I used to meet the judge in her chambers and sometimes in her home, where I’d receive the foreign currency, which was U.S. dollars to deposit into her bank account. “I introduced one Abba Said, a Bureau de Change operative to her when there was a need to change the dollars to naira. “This mostly happened when she was not comfortable with a particular transaction. “There were instances where the deposits exceeded the maximum amount for an individual account, when such instances occured, I paid the maximum amount into her account. “I would then deposit the remaining cash into my account which was paid into her account in subsequent days,” Oshodi told the packed courtroom.
Counsel to Ofili-Ajumogobia, Mr Olawole Akoni (SAN), however, raised objections when EFCC attempted to tender his client’s account statements as evidence on the grounds that he had not reviewed the bank statements. “The first defendant has been in incarceration since Nov. 10. She needs adequate time and facility to defend herself. I humbly seek an adjournment,” Akoni said. Supporting his request for adjournment, lawyer to Obla , Mr Ifedayo Adedipe (SAN), also said the second defendant had been in incarceration since November 8. Justice Hakeem Oshodi in granting an adjournment said; “for the purpose of fair hearing, the court will accede to the request for adjournment of this trial. “The case is adjourned to Jan. 9, 2017 for continuation of trial,” Oshodi said.
SPONSORED BY 234NAIRA.COM: The Ekiti State governor-elect Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) on Sunday delivered his acceptance speech in his Owo home after the Independent National Electoral Commission declared him the winner of the Saturday’s governorship election in the state.
The All Progressives Congress candidate, Akeredolu, polled a total number of 244, 842 votes to beat runners up, Eyitayo Jegede (SAN) of the Peoples Democratic Party, who had 146,784. The Alliance for Democracy candidate, Chief Olusola Oke came third with 107,124 votes.
In his acceptance speech, Akeredolu attributed his victory to the will of God while also commending President Muhammadu Buhari, National Chairman of the APC, Chief John Oyegun, and members of the party’s National Working Committee for their commitment to his ambition. The governor-elect also promised not to fail the people of Ondo State.
He said, “I wish to express my profound gratitude, first, to the Almighty God whose infinite grace has allowed us to see this day.
“This victory is of God through the people. It is not for me or the APC alone, it is a victory for the people of Ondo State irrespective of which side of the divide you stood during the election. For me it is a challenge to perform. It is a call to rescue our state and reverse it fortunes.
“I thank the people of my dear state for their steadfastness. I have heard their messages throughout the campaign to all the nooks and crannies of the state. Today, you have spoken with one voice. You have walked your talk. You have voted for me as your governor for the next four years.
“Today, change has come. I hereby made a solemn pledge that this collective mandate shall address all issues with keen determination. The welfare of our people alone shall be the directive policy of the government.
“Today’s victory is a confirmation of the willingness and readiness of the people of Ondo State to change and seek a better life. I thank you for your faith and confidence in me. I thank all those whose uncommon sacrifice, contributed in no small measure to the success of the exercise. A special show of gratitude must be extended to our security agents for their patriotic duty.
“I shall in few months be saddled with the task of providing responsible leadership, a leadership that would take our people from poverty and stagnation to productivity and prosperity, from pains and lamentation to joy and laughter. It is the sole reason you have voted for me and by the grace of God I will not fail you.”
SPONSORED BY X365RADIO.COM: Former Cuban President Fidel Castro is dead at the age of 90, his brother, Cuban President Raul Castro announced.
Fidel Castro’s communist government survived a U.S.-backed invasion of Cuban exiles, a superpower missile crisis, assassination plots and decades of U.S. economic sanctions. But Castro lived long enough to see Washington announce the re-establishment of full diplomatic relations with Havana and the subsequent visit by a U.S. president to the island in March 2016.
Fidel Castro Ruz was born August 13, 1926, and grew up to become one of the leaders of the movement against the dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista. He led a guerrilla force that eventually routed Batista’s army and took over the island in 1959.
His victory and triumphant entry into Havana captured the world’s attention. But he soon steered the country toward Communism and the orbit of the Soviet Union.
“He is a man who made a lot of promises to the Cuban people,” said Cuban democracy activist Frank Calzon. “Cubans were going to have freedom. They were going to have honest government. They were going to have a return to the constitution. Instead what he gave them was a Stalinist type of government.”
The United States mounted an invasion of Cuba by a group of Cuban exiles in 1961. But Castro’s forces crushed the invaders at the Bay of Pigs. One year later, Cuba was at the center of a confrontation between the United States and the Soviet Union over the placement of nuclear missiles on the island. A nuclear war was narrowly averted.
As a close ally of Moscow, Castro deployed Cuban troops to various Cold War hot spots, such as Angola. His policies turned Cuba into an international player, according to Cuba expert Wayne Smith.
“I think he will be remembered as the leader who put Cuba on the world map,” Smith said. “Before Castro, Cuba was considered something of a banana republic. It did not count for anything in world politics. Castro certainly changed all that, and suddenly Cuba was playing a major role on the world stage, in Africa as an ally of the Soviet Union, in Asia, and certainly in Latin America.”
At home, universal education and health care were accomplishments that came at the cost of human rights and democracy. Dissidents were thrown in jail and their relatives who protested were often intimidated by pro-government mobs.
“Fidel Castro kept power through fear, through the use of the secret police, through manipulating political forces — just like Stalin did or just like Hitler did,” Calzon said.
Castro frequently denounced the United States, often staging mass rallies to protest the U.S. economic embargo against his country.
Despite decades of U.S. pressure, he managed to stay in power until being sidelined by intestinal surgery in July 2006. The ailing leader formally relinquished the presidency in 2008 to his younger brother Raul, in a transfer of power endorsed in a pro-forma election by Cuba’s National Assembly.
Yet he maintained a role in public life as Cuba’s state-run newspaper published his thoughts on various subjects, including a critique of President Barack Obama’s historic visit to Cuba that underscored the normalization of ties. He also occasionally received visiting foreign dignitaries.
His continued presence on the world stage made him unique, says Cuba specialist Phil Peters.
“I think all admit he was a very large historical figure who won a very impressive military victory in the Cuban revolution, who maneuvered through very difficult circumstances in the international sphere,” Peters, of the Lexington Institute, said. “He put Cuba on the map, in many ways, far beyond its importance in history, far beyond its economic capabilities.”
But the Cuban people paid a heavy price, Calzon, the democracy activist said.
“Whatever good he did, the cost that the Cuban people have had to pay in lives, in suffering, in torture far exceeds whatever positive could be said about him,” Calzon said.
Tyrant or revolutionary, Fidel Castro remained at the center of the world’s media spotlight until the end — an object of fascination for some and repudiation for others.
SPONSORED BY X365TV.COM: Wife of former Nigeria’s Vice-President, Atiku Abubakar, Mrs. Aminat Titi Abubakar on Friday told a Lagos State High Court in Ikeja how former former governorship aspirant in Akwa Ibom State identified as Nsikakabasi Akpan defrauded her of the sum of N918 million.
Giving evidence before Justice Oluwatoyin Ipaye, Mrs Abubakar said: “I have never been inside a court before. Not even a police station in all my life. I am here because I want Justice.
“All my investment and even profit is gone. I want this to serve as a deterrence to other fraudsters that they can’t defraud people and not face Justice.”
Akpan Jacobs and Abdulmalik Ibrahim are facing a 15 count charge of fraud and stealing N918 million being proceeds of sale of a property situate at Plot C63A , Amuwo Odofin
Commercial Layout along Oshodi Apapa Expressway , belonging to Tha Maritime Services Limited.
They however pleaded not guilty to the charge brought against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Mrs Abubakar told the court that Akpan Jacobs , a pastor used the money to contest for governorship in Akwa Ibom State.
The company allegedly belonged to Mrs Abubakar, Dan and Fred Holmes both working for Julius Berger at the time.
The company was formed in 2000 with 49 per cent shares to Mrs Abubakar, 25 per cent to
Holmes and 25 per cent to Akpan Jacobs.
Akpan Jacobs who doubled as the company’s managing director and secretary was however alleged to gone to the Corporate Affairs Commission where he altered the share arrangement in his favour.
He was alleged to have forged a company board resolution re distributing the shares ownership giving himself 70 per cent , 15 per cent to Mrs Abubakar, and 15 per cent to Holmes.
With the shares re-distribution, Akpan Jacobs was alleged to have fraudulently assumed full ownership of THAShipping and subsequently sold a property worth N918m belonging to the company to Dana Motor Nigeria Ltd.
Mrs Abubakar is expected to continue her evidence on December 14, 2016 when the continues with the trial.
Part of the charge read, “that Nsikakabasi Akpan Jacobs and Abdulmalik Ibrahim as the Managing Director and Company Secretary on about the 10th day of August 2008 in Lagos within Ikeja judicial division with intent to defraud stole and converted to your own personal use the sum of N918,000,000.00 being proceeds sale of the property and appurtenances situted at plot C63 A Amuwo Odofin Commercial. Layout along Oshodi-Apapa expressway, Lagos belonging to Tha shipping and Maritime Service limited entrusted with you as the Managing Director.
”Nsikakabasi Akpan Jacobs and Abdulmalik Ibrahim on about the 1st day July 2002 in Lagos within Ikeja judicial Division with intent to defraud forged a Memorandum and Article of Association of Tha Shipping and Maritme Service Limited, dated the 1st day of July 2002 purporting the Signatures therein to have been signed by Florence Doregos and Fred Holms.”