A prosecution witness called by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Mr Michael Wetkas, has told a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, how the immediate past Governor of Jigawa State, Sule Lamido, authorised payments for contracts not executed.
Wetkas, Wednesday, told the court that Lamido authorised that sums be paid into the bank account of Dantata and Sawoe Construction Company for contracts that never existed.
The EFCC is prosecuting Lamido and his two sons, Aminu and Mustspha, on a 27 count charge bordering on money laundering.
Wetkas, a detective with the EFCC, told the court presided over by Justice Adeniyi Ademola that investigations into the alleged fraud were carried out from 2007 to 2015.
While being led in evidence by the prosecution counsel, Mr Chile Okoroma, Wetkas stated that his investigating team visited Dantata and Sawoe Construction Company to investigate the purported contracts, adding that a manager of the company, Mr Sylvester Agoha, who had earlier agreed to have supervised the execution of the contracts, later denied knowledge of them.
Wetkas said Agoha informed the investigation team that contract papers were only presented to him to sign.
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According to the EFCC witness, Lamido and his sons’ companies — Speeds International Limited, Bamaina Holding Company and Gada Company — allegedly supplied bitumen, iron rods and diesel to the Dantata Yard in Kano, adding that a member of the investigating team, Mr Kabiru Mohammed, travelled to the Kano office of the company to verify the alleged supplies of bitumen, Iron rods and diesel.
He also confirmed that his teammate was informed by the officer responsible for receiving such items in Kano that he had neither heard of such companies nor received supplies from them. This, he said made the investigation team conclude that such contracts never existed and such items were never delivered.
“However, there were payments made by the Jigawa State Government into the Access Bank Plc account of Dantata and Sawoe Construction company between 2008 and 2009 for the said contract,” he said.
According to Wetkas, a forensic report from the team’s investigation showed that transactions for the contracts were fraudulently entered into the company’s records for 2014 and 2015 instead of 2010 and 2013 when the contracts were allegedly executed.
The trial judge, Justice Ademola adjourned proceedings in the matter to Thursday for continuation of the witness’s testimony.
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