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Tuesday , 21 November 2017

Ex-FCT minister to forfeit 14 properties

A Federal High Court in Abuja has approved application by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for interim forfeiture of 14 properties by former FCT Minister, Bala Mohammed over alleged corruption.

Justice Nnamdi Dimgba yesterday ordered that the properties, which were allegedly purchased and concealed under names of different companies and individuals, be forfeited to the Federal Government within 21 days. The judge ordered the publication of the order in newspapers.

The order followed an ex parte application by EFCC counsel, Ben Ikani, who pleaded the court to direct all persons or bodies, who may have interest to show cause why the said properties should not be forfeited to the Federal Government.

In the affidavit by an EFCC operative, Ishaya Dauda, the anti-graft agency averred that investigations into allegations of abuse of office, corruption and corrupt practices, and money laundering against the former minister and his son Shamsudeen Mohammed, show that “Some properties reasonably suspected to be proceeds of unlawful activities and crimes kept and concealed in names of proxies and nominees,” have been recovered and seized.

The properties are: a mansion at Plot 2116/2276 Sunrise Estate, Asokoro, Abuja under Intertrans Global Logistic Ltd  and Bird Trust Limited; a four bedroom semi-detached duplex at 235-B14 House No. FS 1A Green Acres Estate Apo-Dutse, Abuja under Diakin Telecommunications Ltd; four bedroom semi-detatched duplex at 235-B14 House No FS 1A Green Acres Estate, Apo-Dutse, Abuja under Diakin Telecommunications Limited; a four bedroom semi-detached duplex at 235-B14 House No FS2B Green Acres Estate Apo, Dutse, Abuja under Bal Vac Mining Nigeria Limited; a four bedroom fully detached duplex with boys quarters at 103 Cadastral Zone A05 Maitama, House No. 1A No 7 Gana Street, Maitama, Abuja under Maimuna S. Aliyu; and  a four bedroom fully detached duplex with boys quarters at 103 Cadastral Zone A05, Maitama, House No. 2A No, 7 Gana Street, Maitama, Abuja under Maimuna S. Aliyu; an uncompleted plot number 1804 Damaturu Crescent off Ahmadu Bello Way, Garki II, Abuja under Intertrans Global Logistic Ltd; and a four bedroom detached duplex with boys quarters at Plot 2643 at No 9 Platinum Luxury Home White Estate, Asokoro, Abuja under Ahmed Musa.

Others are: An undeveloped plot measuring 8, 657.30 square meter at 13 Cadastral Zone D06, Karasana West, Abuja under Bal Vac Mining Ltd; an undeveloped plot measuring 1.45 hectares at 1248 Cadastral Zone C16, Industrial Area 1 Extension, Abuja; an undeveloped plot measuring 2.7 hectares at 4525 Cadastral Zone A09, Guzape, Abuja under Bal VAc Mining Ltd; and an undeveloped plot measuring 1.26 hectares at 1261 Cadastral Zone C16, Industrial Area 1 Extension, Abuja under Diakin Telecommunications Ltd; an undeveloped plot measuring 64507.03 square meter at 32 Cadastral Zone D06, Carasana Wests, Abuja under Diakin Telecommunications Ltd; and an undeveloped plot measuring 1251.15 square meter at 1420 Cadastral Zone B10, Dakibiyu, Abuja under Diakin Telecommunication Ltd.

Bala Mohammed, who is also facing a six-count charge bordering on abuse of office, false declaration of assets and fraud to the tune of N864million before an FCT High Court, was absent at the hearing on Tuesday.

The lawyer who stood in for Chris Uche (SAN), who is the lead defence counsel, Nbani Tula, told the court that the lead counsel was bereaved as he lost his younger brother. He said the ex-minister was absent in court due to stomach problem.

Justice Talba Abubakar, thereafter adjourned the matter to December 4.

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