EFCC, NDDC States at Loggerheads over return of Stolen Funds

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) may be at loggerheads with the nine Governors of the oil-producing States are over N84.7 billion allegedly siphoned from the statutory 13 percent derivation meant for the nine oil-producing States.

According to a report another bone of contention was the request for the release of N52 billion recovered from former Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, and some of his accomplices.

Ahmed Idris is standing trial over an alleged N109 billion money laundering charge, diversion of public funds, abuse of office, and conspiracy, preferred against him by the EFCC. The EFCC’s investigation has uncovered N84.7 billion siphoned from the statutory 13 percent derivation meant for the nine oil-producing states.

The states are Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo, Imo, Ondo, and Rivers.The money was allegedly siphoned by a consultancy firm, Olusegun Akindele Consultancy, and other accomplices engaged by the nine NDDC states to review and reconcile the payments due to them from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) between 2004 and 2016. The report said specifically, Olusegun Akindele Consultancy firm received a total sum of N84. 7 billion, being 9.84 percent of N861,135,887,749.10 as consultancy fees and the money was shared among four groups.

The EFCC was also able to recover the total sum of N52 billion from fictitious consultancy contracts awarded to three out of the four groups. The funds belong to the nine oil-producing states as approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) in their meeting on August 20, 2021.Further investigation showed that several correspondences were made between the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Umo Eno, on behalf of the nine states, and the EFCC.

The Akwa Ibom State Governor, Eno, wrote the EFCC seeking the release of the N52 billion to the nine states to a consultant, Messrs Platinum Resources Limited.

The EFCC turned down the request, insisting that each of the states should send the account details of their government for the release of the money.However, the EFCC’s directive was not complied with as Eno was said to have sent the account details of only four states – Akwa Ibom, Delta, Bayelsa, and Rivers to the EFCC, while the account details of the remaining five states were not sent.

Further investigation showed that the EFCC insisted that all the account details of the nine states should be provided.
The EFCC Chairman, Ola Olukoyede, is planning to pay the money into the CBN derivation account of each of the states.

“This development is the basis of the fight of the governors of the nine states with the commission. The EFCC’s position is to allow for transparency and accountability concerning the use of the recovered funds,” a source said.

Copied from the X handle of Imran Mohammad

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