EFCC Arraigns Chairman Benue INEC, Seven Others Over 500 Million Fraud
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC), Makurdi Zonal Office has arraigned the Chairman of Benue State Independent Electoral Commission and Seven others over Five Hundred Million naira fraud before Justice Abdul Dogo, of the Federal High Court sitting in Makurdi.
They are Chairman, Benue State Independent Electoral Commission (BSIEC), Hon. Loko Tersoo Joseph; the secretary Hon. Serki Mtomba Manasseh; the Treasurer, Hon. Akange Akula and 5 other members/Commissioners namely: Hon. Abe Aboyi Augustine, Hon. Barr. Donald Kertyo, Hon. Agber Aondona Emmanuel, Hon. Sunday Agbaji, and Hon. Ekoja Daniel facing 23 count charges.
The charges border on Money Laundering of about N500,000,000 (Five Hundred Million Naira only), on conspiracy, Criminal Breach of Trust, Misappropriation, money laundering and forgery.
The defendants pleaded 'not guilty to the charges preferred against them, but the prosecution counsel, Ramiah Ikhanaede asked for a trial date and that all the defendants be remanded in a Correctional Facility based on their pleas.
The counsel to all defendants, B. A. Iorhegh, however, apologised that they have not brought formal applications for bail before the Court, that the charge was served to all defendants late and some of them are on medication, he urged the Court to move the applications orally which Court granted. He urged Court to grant the bail on self-recognisances or in the alternative on most liberal terms to allow defendants to appear for their trial.
Justice Dogo, after listening to the counsel submissions admitted all defendants to bail in the sum of N10 million each with one surety in like sum while the Surety must have a landed property fully developed worth N50 million in Benue.
The case was then adjourned till September 28, 2021, for the commencement of trial and all defendants be remanded at Correctional Facility of Makurdi, Benue State pending the perfection of their bail