An operative of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Ahmed today told the Federal High Court, Abuja, presided over by Justice E. S. Chukwu that former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole, used non existent companies to divert public funds.
The former speaker is facing a 16-count criminal charge bordering on contract inflation and fraudulent embezzlement of public fund totalling N9 billion.
At the resumed hearing of the case on May 28, 2013, the prosecution witness, Ibrahim Ahmed, who was lead in evidence by EFCC counsel, Festus Keyamo said that in the course of investigation, letters were written and sent to the Clerk of the House of Representatives, banks where the House maintained accounts, and the Accountant-General of the Federation for the details of the releases made to the Lower Chamber in respect of 2010 capital budget. Ibrahim added that a letter was also written to the Director-General of Bureau for Public Procurement for the current price of items mentioned in the petition against Bankole.
Ibrahim further told the court that from the responses, the contractors were identified and a letter was sent to the Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC, to verify the status of these companies.
The prosecution witness further told the court that based on the response from CAC, the investigative team decided to do a physical verification of the addresses of the companies as stated in the CAC response. However, he said none of the addresses was found to be genuine. Ibrahim gave the names of the non existent companies as Multigate Resources Limited, Wadata Global Company and Chiwama Nigeria Limited.
The witness also revealed that based on investigation, the contractors were discovered to have been paid.
Justice Chukwu has fixed June 12-13, 2013 for further hearing.