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Tuesday , 17 October 2017

Presidency’s nominee, Dr. Saadu Alanamu,in N182m fraud mess

The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission has arraigned one of the men recently nominated by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo to the board of the ICPC.

Osinbajo had, in his capacity as Acting President in August, appointed Dr. Saadu Alanamu as a member of the ICPC board, where he was expected to play an active role in the anti-corruption campaign.

Alanamu, who was later dropped by Osinbajo following unfavourable reports, was arraigned by the ICPC for alleged N182m fraud last week.

The commission said in a statement by its spokesperson, Mrs. Rasheedat Okoduwa, that Alanamu, a former Chairman of the Governing Council of the Kwara State Polytechnic, Ilorin, allegedly collected a bribe from a contractor.

He was subsequently charged with eight counts before Justice Mahmud Abdulgafar of the Kwara State High Court 7, Ilorin, along with the Chief Executive Director of Namylas Nigeria Limited, Salman Sulaiman.

The commission, in the charge sheet, accused Alanamu, who was also the Chairman of the Kwara State Polytechnic Tenders Board, of collecting N5m bribe from a contractor, Salman Sulaiman, as a kickback for the award of a contract.

Counsel for the ICPC, Sunny Ezeana, told the court that Alanamu received the bribe through his First Bank account on February 11, 2015 from Namylas Nigeria Limited, a company owned by Sulaiman, who is also his friend.

The court heard that Alanamu ensured that the contract for the construction and furnishing of an auditorium in Kwara State Polytechnic, at the cost of N182,369, 625.00, was awarded to Namylas Nigeria Limited even when it was found that the company was not qualified to execute the contract.

The ICPC said its investigation into the petition had revealed strong evidence of collusion, bid rigging and corrupt practices against Namylas Nigeria Limited in the bid process; and that the company used falsified, forged and doctored PENCOM Compliance Certificate, Tax Clearance Certificate and ITF Certificate of Compliance to submit its bid during the bidding process.

Sulaiman, on his part, was accused of bribing a government official when he paid N5m to Alanamu as a reward for the award of contract to his company, thereby committing an offence contrary to Section 9(1) (a) and punishable under Section 9(1) (b) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.

Their offences are also in violation of Sections 8 (1) (a), 10(a) (i), 18 (b), 19 and 22(1) (a) (i) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000 and punishable under the aforementioned sections.

The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charges when they were read to them.

The trial judge granted them bail in the sum of N2m with two sureties in like sum each while one of the sureties each must have a landed property in Ilorin.

 The matter was then adjourned till October 12, 2017 for pre-trial hearing in line with Section 3 of the Kwara State High Court Practice Direction, 2013, after which a new date for trial would be set.

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