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N2.9bn fraud: Judge threatens to strike out EFCC’s case against Okorocha


A Federal High Court in Abuja has threatened to strike out a fraud suit brought against the senator representing Imo West in the National Assembly, Rochas Okorocha.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission had on January 31, 2022, filed 17 counts against the former Imo State governor before the Abuja court.

The charges were filed against Okorocha hours after he formally declared his intention to run for President.

According to the EFCC, the ex-governor allegedly conspired with others, including a member of the All Progressives Congress and five companies, to steal N2.9bn public funds.

Aside from Okorocha, other defendants are Anyim Nyerere Chinenye, Naphtali International Limited, Perfect Finish Multi Projects Limited, Console Projects Consulting Limited, Pramif International Limited, and Legend World Concepts Limited.

When the case came up on February 22, Okorocha was not in court and he did not have any legal representation.

The EFCC counsel, Cosmos Ugwu, had earlier told the court that he had been unable to serve the processes on Okorocha.

At the court session on Monday, Ugwu said he was still unable to serve the first defendant with the charges.

“Given this, we plead with my lord to graciously accommodate us with an adjournment,” he said.

The presiding judge, Justice Inyang Ekwo, said though he would grant the prayer for another adjournment, if Ugwu came up with the same excuse on the next adjourned date, the matter would be struck out.

The judge said, “One month plus you are still coming to say you are yet to serve.

“This will be the last time this matter will be adjourned.”

Justice Ekwo added that the adjournment was to see how serious the commission was about prosecuting the matter.

He then adjourned the matter till May 30 for the defendants to be arraigned.

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