Thursday 2 June 2016

Former Governor Arrested by the EFCC Over N1.9billion Fraud

For allegedly misappropriating the sum of N1.9billion while in office, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Wednesday detained a former acting governor. 

Umaru Fintiri
A former Acting Governor of Adamawa State, Umaru Fintiri, was reportedly detained by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday in connection with the ongoing probe of a N1.9billion fraud.
A top source who spoke with The Nation, said the ex-governor who is being investigated for alleged abuse of office and corruption, was invited by the EFCC but it became necessary to detain him to enable investigators to grill him.
The source said the ex-governor arrived at the EFCC headquarters at about 12:00noon and had undergone quizzing for seven hours.
“The governor was invited following a petition to the EFCC by a former member of his cabinet, who said he could not keep quiet on what transpired under Fintiri.

“From our preliminary findings, we discovered that while in office, the administration of Fintiri awarded two road contracts including a N1billion work for Yola township road and another N1.9billion for road project in Mararaba Garta, which was ravaged by Boko Haram.

“From our preliminary findings, the two projects were awarded to Roycon Limited. Although there was evidence of the execution of Yola road project, the contracting firm could not move to Mararaba Garta because of Boko Haram insurgency.

“But from records available, Roycon Limited was given a mobilization fee of N20million. But the said N200million was later traced to Mayim Construction and Properties Limited which is allegedly owned by Fintiri.

“About $3.8million from the contract sum was alleged to have been paid to Fintiri who used it to purchase a property in Taraba State,” the source said.

While responding to a question, the source added:“Investigation so far revealed that Fintiri took a loan from a bank to set up a tea farm on Mambilla Plateau. But when he allegedly got the $3.8million, he diverted it to offset the loan.

“We have taken Fintiri into custody, he might spend some days with us before being admitted to bail. We have a few issues to also clarify from him. When Fintiri became the acting governor, Adamawa State’s debts amounted to N8.7bliion but within four months, the profile rose to N13.85bliion."
Following the impeachment of Governor Murtala Nyako and his deputy, Bala Ngilari in July 2014, Fintiri became acting governor as the then Speaker of the Adamawa State House of Assembly.
Nyako allegedly left a balance of N1,957,045,82 in the state government project account with a bank. 
But Fintiri directed that N1.9 billion from the account be released to the state Ministry of Works on August 27, 2014. It was the same funds that landed Fintiri in trouble because the road project was not executed.

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