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Former Accountant-General pleads for more time to refund allegedly looted funds

On Wednesday, Anamekwe Nwabuoku, the former acting Accountant-General of the Federation, requested more time from Justice James Omotoso of the Federal High Court in Abuja to complete the refund of public funds allegedly looted by him and his co-defendant, Felix Nweke.
The defendants are facing 11 counts of money laundering, involving N1.6 billion, brought by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Nwabuoku and Nweke are accused of committing these acts while Nwabuoku was the Director of Finance and Accounts in the Ministry of Defence between 2019 and 2021. The charges were filed by EFCC counsel Ekele Iheanacho.

Nwabuoku served briefly as the acting Accountant-General of the Federation, appointed on May 20, 2022, under ex-President Muhammadu Buhari, following the suspension of Ahmed Idris over alleged N80 billion fraud. However, Nwabuoku was removed from the position in July 2022.

During Wednesday’s proceedings, the defendants requested an adjournment for their arraignment to finalize the refund process. Nweke’s lawyer, Emeka Onyeaka, informed the court of new developments, stating that Nweke had made substantial refunds to the anti-graft agency. Onyeaka noted that the EFCC had received the funds and was in communication with them.


Nwabuoku’s lawyer, Maduakolam Igwe, supported Onyeaka’s submission, confirming that his client had also made significant refunds and was in communication with the EFCC.

In response, EFCC counsel Ogechi Ujam acknowledged the receipt of a proposal letter but emphasized that no formal negotiation, settlement, or agreement had been reached. Ujam urged the court to proceed with the defendants’ arraignment.

After considering the submissions, Justice Omotosho adjourned the case until October 14 for the arraignment.

 

(Punch)


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