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EFCC arraigns Ahmed Idris, suspended accountant-general, over ‘N109bn fraud’

Author:
Bolanle Olabimtan

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrived at a federal capital territory (FCT) high court with Ahmed Idris, suspended accountant-general of the federation.

In May, TheCable had reported how Idris was arrested in Kano after he failed to respond to invitations by the commission to answer questions over the allegation of N80 billion fraud.

Two days later, Idris was suspended indefinitely “without pay” by Zainab Ahmed, the minister of finance, budget and national planning.

Idris was arraigned alongside Godfrey Olusegun Akindele and Mohammed Kudu Usman, and a firm — Gezawa Commodity Market and Exchange Limited.

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The EFCC said Idris and his co-defendants are indicted on a 14-count charge of stealing and criminal breach of trust to the tune of N109.5 billion.

According to one of the charges, the EFCC alleged that Idris received gratification from one Olusegun Akindele, worth N15.1 billion, in exchange for “accelerating the payment of 13% derivation to the nine oil-producing states in the federation”.

“That you, Ahmed Idris between February and December 2021 at Abuja in the Abuja Judicial Division of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, being a public servant by virtue of your position as the Accountant General of the Federation, accepted from Olusegun Akindele, a gratification in the aggregate sum of N15,136,221,921.46 (Fifteen Billion, One Hundred and Thirty-Six Million, Two Hundred and Twenty-One Thousand, Nine Hundred and Twenty-One Naira and Forty-Six Kobo), which sum was converted to the United States Dollars by the said Olusegun Akindele and which sum did not form part of your lawful remuneration but as a motive for accelerating the payment of 13% derivation to the nine (9) oil producing states in the Federation, through the office of the Accountant General of the Federation, and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 155 of the Penal Code Act Cap 532 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 1990 and punishable under the same section,” the charge sheet reads.

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At the court session on Friday, Rotimi Jacobs, counsel to the EFCC, prayed the court to grant the prosecution leave to prefer a criminal charge under section 109 of ACJA against the defendants.

Adeyemi Ajayi, the judge, granted the application as prayed.

Consequently, the 14-count charge was read to the defendants.

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