EFCC ARRAIGNS EX-BAYELSA GOVERNOR’S AIDE, TWO OTHERS,   FOR ALLEGED N864M PROCUREMENT FRAUD

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 Former Bayelsa Aide and two others

 

By Our Reporter

 

A former Senior Special Assistant on Millennium Development Goals to the
immediate past Governor of Bayelsa State, Henry Seriake Dickson,
Embelekpo Apere,   was on Thursday, January 28, 2021 arraigned by the
Port Harcourt Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes
Commission, EFCC.

Apere, was arraigned alongside Rollins Allison Amacree, Clever Loveday
and a company: Oriazy Global Link Limited before Justice Jane E. Inyang
of the Federal High Court sitting in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State on 10-count
charges bordering on alleged conspiracy and procurement fraud to the
tune of N864, 104, 000. 00(Eight Hundred and Sixty Four Million, One
Hundred and Four Thousand Naira only).

Count 2 of the charges read:”That you, Embelekpo Apere and Rollins
Allision Amacree,  on or about 2015 and 2016 in Bayelsa State within the
jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did without soliciting for
expression of interest by publishing a notice to that effect in Two
National Newspapers and in your Journal, awarded and paid contract worth
N352,104,000.00 (Three Hundred and Fifty-two Million, One Hundred and
Four Thousand Naira only) to Dekams World Global Nigeria Ltd and thereby
committed an offence contrary to Section 44 (a) and 45 (2) of the Public
Procurement Act 2007 and punishable under Section 58(1) of the same
Act”.

Count 3 read:”That you Embelekpo Apere and Rollins Allision Amacree,  on
or about 2015 and 2016 in Bayelsa State within the jurisdiction of this
Honourable Court, did without soliciting for expression of interest by
publishing a notice to that effect in Two National Newspapers and in
your Journal awarded and paid contract worth N182,000,000.00 (One
Hundred and Eighty Two Million Naira) only to Ayebomateke & Son’s Ltd
and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 44 (a) and 45 (2)
of the Public Procurement Act 2007 and punishable under Section 58(1) of
the same Act”

They all pleaded “not guilty” to the charges when they were read to
them.  In view of their pleas,   prosecution counsel, M.T Iko asked for
a date for the commencement of trial.

However, counsels to the 1st and 2nd defendants, Oyebiyi O and P.J.
Fawei and counsel to the 3rd and 4th defendants, W. Ogberipou informed
the judge of bail applications already placed before the court. This
prayer was contested by Iko who expressed fears that the defendants may
interfere with the prosecution of the case “by threatening witnesses and
the prosecution”.  He prayed the court to for an order for accelerated
hearing of the matter.

Justice Inyang, however, granted the defendants bail in the sum of
Twenty Million Naira (N20, 000,000.00) each and one surety in like sum,
who must be residents within the jurisdiction of the court.
All the sureties should depose to an affidavit of means and deposit
their original Certificates of Occupancy with the Deputy Court
Registrar.

The Judge also ordered that international passports of defendants be
handed over to the Registrar of the Court while sureties should be
verified by the Investigating Officers.

The matter was adjourned till February 17, 22 and 24, 2021 for hearing.

The defendants got into trouble by awarding contracts without following
due processes.  They allegedly made payments to third parties exceeding
N50million without passing through a financial institution, in violating
of provisions of the Money Laundering Act

 

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