- The suspended CJN, Justice Walter Onnoghen, discloses that some of the foreign currencies deposited in his domiciliary account were gotten from his savings from estacodes including medical expenses
- Onnoghen says prior to opening the US dollar account, he had foreign currency which he kept at home due to a government policy that proscribed the operation of foreign currency account by public officers
- The suspended CJN notes that he opened the said account after he got to know that the policy had been changed
The suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, has disclosed that some of the foreign currencies deposited in his domiciliary account were from trading in foreign exchange (forex), AGRICODE, while others were returns from proceeds of his investments.
Onnoghen in a voluntary statement made at Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB), in Abuja, said some of the funds were sourced partly from his reserve and saving from estacodes, including medical expenses, The Sun reports.
He noted that prior to opening the US dollar account, he had foreign currency, which he kept at home, due to the fact that there existed a government that proscribed the operation of foreign currency account by public officers including judicial officers.
He said he opened the said account after he got to know that the policy had changed, noting that upon opening the account, he was told that he cannot pay in more than $10,000 at a time and per payment slip.
The statement by Onnoghen read in part: "The deposits made in my US Dollar account No. 87000106250 with STD. Chartered Bank of $10,000 at different intervals of June 28, 2011 were sourced partly from my reserve and saving from my estacodes, including medical expenses.
“The same applies to my deposit of July 28, 2011, of $10,000 twice. It is important to state that prior to my opening the US dollar account, I had foreign currency, which I kept at home, due to the fact that there existed a government that proscribed the operation of foreign currency account by public officers including judicial officers.
“It was when I got to know that the policy had changed that I had to open the said account. Upon opening the account, I was made to understand that I cannot pay in more than $10,000 at a time and per payment slip. I cannot remember the total amount I had on reserve at the time, but it spread from my practice days as a private legal practitioner from 1979 to 1989.
“Some of the deposits are a result of forex trading, AGRICODE, and other investment returns were from proceeds of my investments into them. The withdrawals in the account are partly to pay children’s fees, upkeep abroad and further investments. My British pound and euro accounts with Chartered Standard Bank are savings accounts.”
“In the January 1, 2019 document, the suspended jurist, who wrote his statement on January 11, 2019, between 12:30pm to 1: 45pm added: “I, Walter S. N. Onnoghen, of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, hereby, voluntarily depose to the statement averred herein, knowing that whatever I write or state may be tendered against me as evidence in court.
“I also volunteer to state that the statement was not taken in evidence from me under duress but after the administering officer had explained and made known the details of the allegations against me.”
In response to allegations of non-declaration of his assets, justice Onnoghen added: “My asset declaration for numbers. SCN000014 and SCN.0000 5 were declared on the same day, December 14, 2016 because I forgot to make a declaration of May 2005 of my assets after the expiration of my 2005 declaration in 2009.
"Following my appointment as acting chief justice of Nigeria in November 2016, the need to declare my asset anew made me to realise the mistake and then did the declarations to cover the period in default.
"I did not include my Standard Chartered Bank Account in SCN. 000014 because I believed they were not opened during the period covered by the declaration.
“I did not make a fresh declaration of asset after my substantive appointment as CJN because I was under the impression that my SCN. 000015 was to cover the period of four years; which includes my leave as CJN.”
In another news report, the Federal High Court sitting in Kano has ordered an interim forfeiture of the sum of N1.04bn allegedly hidden the bank account of a company allegedly linked to former First Lady, Patience Jonathan, following a suit filed by the EFCC.
The anti-graft commission in a statement on Thursday, January 31, said the forfeiture order was granted by Justice Lewis Allagoa against Magel Resort LTD.
The EFCC stated that it secured the forfeiture order after it received an intelligence alleging that a bank account domiciled in a bank, was said to have stored huge sum of money that is not being used by anybody.
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