An official of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Solomon Okotie, has told a Federal High Court sitting in Jos, Plateau State that his investigation revealed that no money from the award of contracts in Gombe State could be traced to the account of former Governor Danjuma Goje. Okotie, who is the Prosecution Witness 1 (PW1), made the revelation at the resumed trial of Goje who is being prosecuted by the EFCC for allegedly embezzling N25 billion.
The EFCC investigator said that due process was followed in the award of contracts in Gombe State during Goje’s tenure as governor.
Under cross-examination by counsel to Goje, Chief Chris Uche (SAN), Okotie said, “With specific reference to the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) there was a letter from the Commission that it approved the action plan and the award of contracts.
He also admitted that having obtained the contractor’s bank statement and studied same and confirmed that the monies covered by the vouchers went into the account of the contractor, Real and Integrated Hospitality Company, which is Zenith Bank.
Okotie also stated that at the end of his probe, he did not trace any money from the contract to any account belonging to Goje, any company or person (s) related to him.
He declared that the contracts for which the former governor is standing trial were fully executed.
The second Prosecution Witness who is the Solicitor-General and Permanent Secretary in the Gombe State Ministry of Justice, Mr Magellan Dedi, had in his testimony, told the court headed by Justice B.O Quadiri that he was informed by the State Universal Basic Education Board officials that due process was followed in the award of the contract and that he understood that the former Attorney- General received instruction from the 1st defendant (Goje) to terminate the contract for non-performance within the stipulated three months.
The EFCC is prosecuting Goje for allegedly conspiring with others in Gombe to conceal or disguise the sum of N5billion property of Gombe State Government which was or in whole or part, directly represented proceeds of an illegal act contrary to Section 17 of the Money Laundering (Prohibition
Other charges are that Goje between May 2003 and 2011 in Gombe within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court committed an offence to converted the sum of N5billion property of Gombe State and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 14 of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2004.
He was also accused of converting the sum of N1.920billion property of Gombe State and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 17 of the Money Laundering
Prohibition Act 2004.
The EFCC also alleged that Goje attempted to convert, conspire with others to conceal or disguise the sum the sum of N830.725million property of the Universal Basic Education Commission
(UBEC) an agency of the Federal Government which was, or in whole or in part, directly or indirectly represented proceeds of an illegal act contrary to Section 17 of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2004.
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