EFCC, Akwa Ibom in war of words over probe of Akpabio’s alleged N108.1b fraud
- Akwa Ibom state government and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) are at war over investigating Godswill Akpabio
- The Senate minority leader is under probe for alleged diversion of public funds and corrupt practices
- EFCC claims that the state government has stalled the commission's efforts to interrogate some state officials
The Akwa Ibom state government has reportedly blocked the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for seven times, from investigating former governor of the state, Godswill Akpabio.
Legit.ng gathered that the Senate minority leader is under probe for alleged diversion of public funds and corrupt practices reported to the EFCC through several petitions by Leo Ekpenyong, a lawyer.
Ekpenyong claimed that Akpabio allegedly devised a means of enriching himself at the expense of the state.
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Akpabio will be expected to be quizzed on how N108.1 billion state funds were allegedly to have been diverted.
The former Akwa Ibom governor was also alleged to have in 2013 paid N566, 883, 728.66, N441, 808,081.90 and N392, 631,943.37 as gifts to a new generation bank.
According to the commission, the allegations against Akpabio border on award of bogus contracts to cronies who used the proceeds to buy several properties in Lagos and Abuja.
The allegations also include the reported withdrawal of N18 billion fraudulently from the state’s Federal Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC) in tranches of N10 million and above in a surreptitious manner to conceal their dishonest intention.
Spending of over N50 billion state funds by the former governor during the last general elections; and alleged withdrawal of N18 billion from the state’s coffers under the guise of special services, reception of very important guests and sundry items.
The ex-governor is also under probe for allegedly acquiring some assets through surrogates, including a multi-billion naira mansion at Plot 5, Ikogosi Spring Close, off Katsina-Ala Crescent, Maitama-Abuja; a multi-billion naira mansion at Plot 28 Colorado Close, Maitama, Abuja; 22 Probyn Road, Ikoyi, Lagos; Plot 23 Olusegun Aina Street, Parkview, Lagos and a multi-billion naira 25-storey building at Akin Adesola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos.
The EFCC said its efforts to interrogate some state officials had been stalled by the government.
The anti-graft agency said it made seven requests for the release of some officials, but none was honoured.
However, the Akwa Ibom state government, in a letter signed by the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Uwemedimo Nwoko, dated June 28, 2017 explained why the officials could not be released to the EFCC.
He said a suit was pending before the Federal High Court, Uyo where he was challenging the power of the commission to investigate activities of the state.
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Legit.ng earlier reported that the EFCC reportedly applied for the forfeiture of over N1.823 billion by some consultants hired by the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF).
This is after the anti-graft agency reportedly discovered a fake $3 million contract from the Paris Club loan refund by the governors.
A suspect, Ifeanyi Okafor, revealed to the EFCC how he engaged in a fictitious consultancy for the governors who, under the NGF, paid him $3 million from the loan refund.
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