A High Court sitting in Yola, the
Adamawa State capital, has ruled that the former governor of Adamawa State,
James Ngilari, be remanded in the custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes
Commission.

A statement by the EFCC’s
spokesman for the Gombe Zonal office, Gbenga Aroyehun, which was made available
to newsmen in Bauchi, said that Justice Nathan Musa of the Adamawa State High
Court, presided over the court sitting which sat in Yola on Wednesday.

He said the EFCC had charged
Ngilari for the violation of procurement laws in the award of a N167m contract
to one El-Yadi Motors Limited for the supply of 25 units of Toyota Corolla.

Aroyehun said the anti-graft
agency had instituted a 19 count-charge against Ngilari, the former secretary
to the state government who served under him, Ibrahim Welye, and a former
Commissioner of Finance and Budget, Sanda Jonathan Lamurde.

He stated that “the EFCC accused
them of conspiracy, lack of No Objection Certificate, no competitive bidding
and others in the procurement process for the contract.

“The three pleaded not guilty and
their lawyers applied for bail on their behalf which the prosecution opposed.”

The commission’s spokesman also
said that “the court ruled that they should be remanded in custody while he adjourned
until today (Thursday) for ruling on bail application.”

Ngilari was still in the custody
of the EFCC as of the time (6.25pm) of filing this report.

Meanwhile, the Media Initiative
against Injustice, Violence and Corruption, has called on the EFCC to revisit
the corruption cases against former state governors.

The Executive Director of MIIVOC,
Dr. Walter Duru, said it was shocking to note that more than 12 years after
some former governors were accused of misappropriating their states’ funds,
their cases appeared to have been swept under the carpet.

Duru, who made reference to the
cases against former governors of Abia, Rivers, Plateau, Enugu and Akwa Ibom
states, said it was unacceptable for the cases to remain in the file without
the EFCC reopening them.

Duru, who spoke with one of our
correspondents in Port Harcourt on Wednesday, expressed the need for the
Attorney General of the Federation and the Minister of Justice, Abubakar
Malami, to order the EFCC to revisit the said cases.

Explaining that the
anti-corruption fight of the current administration should not exclude the
former governors from probe, he lamented that the amount of funds in the hands
of the former public office holders was up to a trillion naira.

He pointed out that the money
allegedly stolen by the ex-state governors was enough to revive the country’s
ailing economy if they could be recovered and added to what the Federal
Government had in its coffers.

“The silence on the corruption
cases against these former governors is unacceptable. The anti-corruption
agency should go a step further in ensuring that the cases against these
governors were followed up to a logical conclusion.

“The money allegedly stolen by
some of the former governors is huge. It is strange to hear people suggesting
that our refineries and the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas company should be
sold because of the current economic recession as if Nigerians have not
suffered enough.

“The monies alleged to have been
stolen, if recovered and added to what we have, are enough to take us out of
recession. We have no reason whatsoever to borrow.

“Every Nigerian must rise up to
fight corruption in the interest of the nation and the future of our unborn
children,” Duru maintained.

The group’s executive director,
however, called on the attorney general of the federation to ensure that those
responsible for stalling the prosecution of the cases against the former
governors were punished.

Punch.

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