On Friday, the crisis between Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom and his ex-political godfather and Minister of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs George Akume became complicated as the state government dragged the minister to anti-corruption agencies for a fraud of 4.56 billion naira.
In September, Governor Ortom took the minister to court for alleged libel and demanded N60 billion for general, exemplary and aggravated damages.
Ortom’s lawsuit follows Akume’s comment at a press conference in Abuja, where the minister accused the governor of incompetence, disrespecting the president, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (at the retirement), as well as massive corruption.
In a letter of complaint to the Commission for Economic and Financial Crimes; Independent Corrupt Practices Commission and Inspector General of Police Prepared and signed by lawyers for Benue State Government, Okeoga Darlington, Esq and made available to reporters; Attorney General and Justice Commissioner Michael Gusa in Makurdi on Friday asked anti-corruption agencies to investigate the alleged financial irregularity amounting to N 4,556,899,632.9 billion when Akume was governor.
The complaint letter which was generated from an audit report covering the period 1999-2007 when Senator George Akume was governor, stated that he (Akume) unilaterally approved the sum of 117 million naira which exceeds its approval limit without resorting to the meeting of the State Executive Council. .
“The reckless financial expenses would have gone to consultancy and the feasibility study of Mbatiav Cement, which turned out to be a white elephant project that never saw the light of day.
“Other findings according to the petition also alleged financial indiscipline, abuse of fiscal policy and misappropriation of various contracts amounting to N3,125,882,409.25 billion,” the letter said.
Akume was also accused of embezzling ecological funds amounting to 300,002,000 million naira which was spent on projects other than the green projects.
“During the audit report, it was also discovered that under the supervision of the former governor, a loan of 150 million naira was taken out from the defunct Afri-Bank in December 2000 for the purchase of shares in companies, but the money was transferred to All Securities Limited for which no receipt was found for the transaction.
“It was also discovered during the audit that the former governor, Akume, claimed to have carried out” many projects “which were never located, which the petition considered to be an aberration of due process,” an abuse of tax policies and a criminal violation of relevant laws.
“Unfortunately, many of these projects, valued at 1,074,017,023.65 billion naira, were not counted because there was no evidence of their execution anywhere,” reads part of the letter. complaint.
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