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EFCC declares Maina wanted for ‘pension fraud’

EFCC declares Maina wanted for ‘pension fraud’
November 02
19:39 2015

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has declared Abdulrasheed Maina, former chairman of Pension Reform Task Team (PRTT), wanted for alleged fraud.

Wilson Uwujaren, spokesman of the EFCC, confirmed the development to TheCable in a text message.

“EFCC has declared Abdulrasheed Maina, former chairman of Pension Reform Task Team, wanted,” he said tersely. “It is in relation to the charge against Oronsaye that we have declared him wanted. He has failed to appear in court, and we do not know where he is.”

In a subsequent statement, EFCC said Maina was wanted for his role in the fraudulent biometric contracts through which himself and former Steve Oronsaye, the former head of service, and two others, allegedly stole over N2bn of pension funds.

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“Maina was on July 21, 2015 charged alongside Oronsaye , Osarenkhoe Afe and Fredrick HamiltonbGlobal Services Limited before a Federal High Court on. a 24 count charge bordering on procurement fraud and obtaining by false pretence. While Oronsaye and two others were in court and pleaded not guilty to the charge, Maina had been at large,” Uwujaren said in the statement.

“However, on July 21 when the court heard the bail applications of the accused persons, Maina, through his counsel, Esther Uzoma, told the court that he was not at large, claiming that the EFCC had never invited him.

“Consequently, EFCC counsel, Rotimi Jacobs, SAN, pleaded with the court to prevail on the accused’s counsel to produce Maina in court as the Commission had no clues as to his whereabouts. The court granted Rotimi’s prayers, yet Maina continued to shun court proceedings, leaving the Commission with no option than to declare him wanted.

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Indeed, since the Commission filed charges against Maina,more damning evidence have emerged on how the ebullient former Pension Task Team boss siphoned pension funds, using secret accounts in a new-generation bank in Abuja. Two officers of the bank were quizzed two weeks ago. Commission’s sources said they made damning revelations of several opaque transactions through which Maina allegedly lined his pockets at the expense of thousands of hapless pensioners.”

EFCC urged anyone with information on Maina’s whereabouts to contact any of its offices in Lagos, Abuja, Gombe, Kano, Port Harcourt and Enugu or report at the nearest police station.

‎In 2013, the former PRTT boss, who is alleged to have stolen billions of pension funds, was reported to have fled the country after a bench warrant was issued for his arrest.

‎Oronsaye, who was charged alongside Maina, is accused of using front companies to steal billions from the federal government.

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He is currently on trial but was granted bail by Gabriel Kolawole, justice of the federal high court, Abuja, in August.

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