Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Nigeria: Court ordered former governor Okorocha, family to forfeit assets to anti-graft agency – EFCC


The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission said on Wednesday that a former governor of Imo State, Senator Rochas Okorocha, and some members of his family would forfeit to the state government assets traced to his family members.

The Head, Enugu zonal office of the commission , Mr Usman Imam, disclosed this while fielding questions from journalists at a press conference in Enugu on the commission’s collaboration with the United States of America’s Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Imam said the commission had obtained orders for the interim forfeiture of assets traced to the former governor, his wife, Nneoma Nkechi, and their daughter.

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He also said the anti-graft agency had obtained similar order on a property traced to Okorocha’s former aide, Mr Paschal Obi.

He said the commission had established prima facie cases against the suspects, which they would answer to.

Imam said the commission would like to know how the Rochas Foundation and “other accomplices” acquired and or converted some of the property for personal use.

Related: Nigeria: EFCC confirms corruption investigation of Imo state governor, Okorocha

He listed some of the property traced to include “a 16 – block 96 – flat structure and an eight – bungalow multimillion naira estate, hotel, two schools, shopping plaza, supermarket, hospital and four vehicles.”

Imam said the only property traced to Obi was a hospital, while the remaining property were traced to the former governor, his wife and daughter. “We hope to get permanent forfeiture orders on the property in order to return them to the people of the state,” he said.

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Imam said all the facilities, including the schools, would remain functional as the commission would not like to shut them down for the sake of the students and other users.

Meanwhile, the commission said 10 suspects on the FBI list of online scammers had been traced to the South-East.

While the EFCC zonal head said the suspects would soon be rounded up, he disclosed that a total of N213.8 million and another $10,600 had been recovered from the crime suspects.

The EFCC revealed that several luxury cars, a three-storey building and duplex were also recovered from the “Yahoo Yahoo boys.”

Related: Nigeria: Why We Raided Former Zamfara Governor, Abdulaziz Yari’s Residence EFCC

The commission also said it arrested 375 suspects for various financial crimes in the South-East in eight months.

Imam said that out of the number, 66 suspects were convicted while 86 had their cases pending in court.

He disclosed that the commission had identified 10 persons in the FBI’s list in the zone and were working to get them arrested.

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He added that the commission recovered a total of “N213,850,230 and $10,600 in cash while a 16 block-cum-96 flats and eight bungalows, multi-million naira estate/hotel, two schools, one shopping plaza, one supermarket complex,  one ultra-modern hospital, four vehicles were assets forfeited on the interim.

“Other recoveries made and awaiting forfeiture but for the court vacation included a twin three-storey building with a three-bedroomed bungalow and a duplex both in Enugu.”


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