Special Adviser to a former Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, George Turnah, was on Monday re-arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, for fraud and money laundering charges to the tune of N2.9 billion.
Turnah who worked with Dan Abia during his time as NDDC MD was re-arraigned alongside Ebis Orubebe, Uzorgor Silas, and nine companies on 23 count charges bordering on fraud, abuse of office, acquisition under false pretense, and money laundering.
As contained in a statement issued by the EFCC Spokesman, Wilson Iwajuren, the names of the companies arraigned alongside Turnah before Justice Mohammed Turaki of the Federal High Court, Port Harcourt, are El- Godams Global Services Ltd, Turnoil and Gas Nigeria Ltd, Kolo Creek Petroleum Development Ltd, Celtic Pride Consult and Events Ltd, Yenagoa Mall Ltd.
Others are the Incorporated Trustees of Concerned Niger Delta Initiative, Akara Boro Marine Services Ltd, Sugarland Integrated Farms Nig. Ltd and Geohan Telecommunications Nig. Ltd.
“Count 23 of the charge reads that you George Turnah Alabh in 2014 within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did receive the sum of $1000,000.00 (One Million United State Dollars) (at the exchange rate of N184 to a Dollar) cash from one Umar Lawal of Hakuri Global Concept exceeding the statutory limit without going through a financial institution and thereby committed an offense contrary to Section 1 (a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2011 (as amended) and punishable under Section 16 (2) (b) of the same Act.
“They pleaded ‘not guilty’ to the charges when they were read to them. Prosecution counsel, I. Agwu, adopted the subsisting evidence on record, praying the court that ‘we shall not be calling any other witness or any other prosecution witness who earlier testified before this court,” part of the statement read.
The statement added that the defense counsel, Prof. Amuda Kaneke, prayed to the court that the defendants be allowed to maintain the bail earlier granted them, while he also asked for an adjournment to enable him to study the newly amended charges before proceeding with his defense.
Hitherto, Justice Turaki, while granting the two prayers of the defense counsel, adjourned the matter till 15, 16, and 17 of March 2021.
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