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Wednesday, June 27, 2018

N2bn Fraud: How ex-Niger State governor, Babangida Aliyu paid over N1.7bn to a non-existent contractor - Witness

N2bn Fraud: How ex-Niger State governor, Babangida Aliyu paid over N1.7bn to a non-existent contractor - Witness

The trial of a former governor of Niger State, Babangida Aliyu, on an eight-count charge of money laundering to the tune of N2billion continued on June 26, 2018 before Justice Yalim Suleiman Bogoro of the Federal High Court, sitting in Minna, Niger State, with prosecution tendering documents to establish the complicity of the defendant in the alleged offence.


Aliyu, fondly referred to as "Chief Servant" during his time as governor is being prosecuted alongside his then Chief of Staff, Umar Nasko by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission. The defendants were accused of laundering ecological funds released by the Federal Government to Niger State sometime in 2014.

Nmadu Mohammed Ndawuya, the State Auditor General, Niger State, while being led in evidence by the prosecution counsel, Ben Ikani, narrated how the sum of N2billion was received by the Ministry of Finance and N1.7billion transferred to the then Ministry of Environment, Forestry, Parks and Garden.

Ndawuya, who testified as PW7 explained that on that same day, the said N1.7billion was paid to contractors who could not be verified, neither were thier offices located.

His words: "In 2014, the sum of N2billion was received by Ministry of Finance and N1.7billion was transferred to Ministry of Environment, Forestry, Parks and Garden. The same day, it was paid out to three contractors. We wanted to know the Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, between the three contractors and the government. We wanted to see the necessary due process of documentation, such as; advertisement of the contract in the paper and certificate of no objection. We also wanted to verify the work done. All these were not available. No evidence. We also wanted to establish the contractors based on the available addresses on the available documents. I sent someone to Abuja to locate the offices but he could not locate their offices".

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