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The many scandals of ex-Deputy Senate President, Ekweremadu

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Nigerians were jolted on Thursday when the news broke that the former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, and his wife, Beatrice, had been arrested by police in the United Kingdom for allegedly conspiring to take a child to the country for harvesting of his organs.

In a statement in London, the Metropolitan Police said the politician and his wife were arraigned at the Uxbridge Magistrates’ Court for alleged conspiracy to facilitate the travel of another person with a view to exploitation, namely organ harvesting.

As Nigerians gradually come to terms with Ekweremadu’s current travails, Ripples Nigeria recalled that the former deputy senate president has had some brushes with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for corruption-related cases in the past.

The first of such cases was in 2018 when the EFCC invited the Senator for interrogation over an alleged money laundering.

In a letter of invitation dated July 24, 2018, and signed by the Director of Operations, Mohammed Abba, the commission invited Ekweremadu to report at its office for clarification on alleged conspiracy, abuse of office and money laundering.

According to the letter, the commission was investigating a petition in which Ekweremadu’s name was featured prominently and the need for the agency to obtain certain clarifications.

It read: “This request is made pursuant to section 38(1) of the Economic and Financial Crimes (Establishment) Act, 2004.

READ ALSO: UK police arrest Ekweremadu, wife for alleged organ harvesting

“In view of the above, you are kindly requested to report and interview the undersigned at 5 Fomela Street, Off Adetokunbo Ademola Crescent, Wuse II Abuja on Tuesday 24th July, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. prompt.”

The former deputy senate president, however, refused to honour the invitation, prompting the EFCC operatives and a team of policemen to storm his official residence in the Apo Legislative Quarters, Abuja, to arrest him.

It took the intervention of ex-Senate President, Bukola Saraki, for Ekweremadu to be let off the hook at the time.

In 2021, he was arrested by the EFCC over another allegation of fraud.

The commission accused the politician of failing to explain how he came about 22 properties in Nigeria, the United States, the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates.

In a statement issued by its Head of Media and Publicity, Wilson Uwujaren, the EFCC said Ekweremadu was under investigation for failing to declare the ownership of the 22 properties with the Code of Conduct Bureau.

The properties were listed as: No 11 Evans Enwerem Street, Apo Legislative Quarters, Apo, Abuja; Plot 2633 Kyami, Abuja; Housing Estate; Plot 1106 CRD, Cadastral Zone 07-07, Lugbe, Abuja; Plot 2782, Asokoro Extension, Abuja; houses at Citi Park Estate, Gwagwalada, Abuja and Plot 1474, Cadastral Zone BD6, Mabushi, Abuja.

Others were the Congress Court, Abuja; Flat 1, Block D25, Athletics Street, (24th Street), Games Village, Abuja; and Plot 66, 64 Crescent, Gwarimpa Estate, Abuja.

The properties located abroad included Flat 4, Varsity Court, Harmer Street, WIH 4NW, London; 52, Ayleston Avenue, NW6 7AB, London; Room 1903, The Address Hotel, Downtown Dubai; The Address Boulevard, 3901, Dubai; two Flats of Burij Side Boulevard (the signature), Dubai and Emirate Gardens Apartment No. EGG1/1/114, Dubai.

The rest were – Emirate Gardens Apartment No. EGG1/115, Dubai; apartment DFB/12/B 1204, Park Towers, Dubai; Flat 3604, MAG214, Dubai; Villa No 148, Maeen 1, The Lakes Emirates Hills, Dubai; 4507 Stella Street, Bellavida Estate Kissime, Florida, United States; 2747 Club Cortile Circle, Kissime, Florida, US and 2763 Club Cortile Circle, Kissime, Florida, US.

The Federal Government later approached the Federal High Court, Abuja, to grant an order for the forfeiture of the properties.

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