- EFCC has released 5.7bn out of N7.9bn seized from senator Rochas Okorocha
- Okorocha was the governor of Imo state between 2011 and 2019
- This was disclosed on Thursday, June 11, by the EFCC's zonal head in Port Harcourt, Usman Imam
Former governor of Imo state, Rochas Okorocha, may soon be prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over the alleged misappropriation of funds.
The Nation reports that the anti-graft agency told Okorocha who is the senator representing Imo West senatorial district at the National Assembly to get ready for his day in court.
Legit.ng gathered that while speaking at the commission’s zonal office in Port Harcourt, Rivers on Thursday, June 11, the zonal head, Usman Imam, said N7.9bn belonging to Imo was seized from the former governor during EFCC investigations.
Imam, who has been in charge of the ongoing probe of the former governor, said the commission returned over N5.7bn to various administrations in Imo to pay salaries and pensions of workers.
He said: “I started the Imo state case in Enugu and upon my deployment to this zone, the investigations of corruption allegations against the former Governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha, was transferred from the Enugu zone to Port Harcourt for further investigations.
“Within the period, the commission succeeded in freezing about N7.9bn in different accounts. All the monies that were released to Imo state government were from the N7.9bn recovered from Okorocha. The monies were released in batches.
“N2.7bn was released in March for salaries. In the PDP government of Emeka Ihedioha, excess of N2.5bn upon series of writings and our insistence of monitoring it, was released to pay salaries and pensions because they were monies recovered from the state so it has to go back to the state.
Apart from the money recovered from Okorocha, the EFCC zonal boss said the senator’s assets were also identified in Imo and Abuja and seized by the commission.
He said the commission filed a court process for interim forfeiture of the assets confiscated from Okorocha.
He said: “The investigation has got to an advanced stage and we are expecting that on conclusion, we are going to arraign the former governor.
“It is in the course of investigations that we targeted his assets. Some are in Imo, Owerri and some are in Abuja. We marked these properties in Abuja and we have filed court processes for interim forfeiture of these assets. The target is to conclude the investigations and he will have his day in court.”
Imam explained that since he assumed the leadership of the zone in January, the commission has recovered N291.8million, 847,983 US Dollars, 390 pounds, 10,900 Euros and 500 CFA.
He said the commission also froze over N1.1bn in the accounts of Bluekey Technologies allegedly operating a ponzi scheme and defrauding over 8,926 victims of over N4.4bn.
Imam explained that the son received 441 petitions, successfully investigated 262 with 159 awaiting legal advice and 20 others charged to court.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that EFCC expressed dissatisfaction with the court’s vacation of an interim forfeiture order regarding some assets traced to a former aviation minister, Stella Oduah.
It was reported that Justice Inyang Ekwo of a federal high court, Abuja, had on Monday struck out EFCC’s affidavit in support of the forfeiture order on the grounds that it was “filed out of time without first seeking the court’s leave for an extension of time to file.”