FG To Arraign Supreme Court Registrar Over N2.2bn Fraud
The Federal Government has charged the Supreme Court Chief Registrar, Ahmed Saleh, and two others over N2.2bn scam among nine other counts.
The charges marked FCT/HC/CR/13/2016 were filed by the AGF before the Federal Capital Territory High Court in Maitama on Thursday.
The allegations is believed to have been discovered after the recent raid by the operatives of the DSS on the homes of some judges.
Registrar, Others Received N74.4m Bribe
Consequently, Saleh, alongside Muhammed Sharif and Rilwanu Lawal, are accused of diverted the sum of N2.2bn belonging to the apex court. Also, they allegedly received gratifications of about N74.4m. These came from private contractors working with the Supreme Court from 2009 to 2016.
The private contractors are Willysdave Ltd., Welcon Nig. Ltd., Dean Musa Nig. Ltd., Ababia Ventures Ltd. and MBR Computers Ltd.
Furthermore, the prosecution alleged in counts three to nine that the accused, between 2009 and 2016, received gratification of N10m from Willysdave Ltd., N8m (in two tranches of N6m and N2.4m) from Welcon Nig. Ltd., N2.4m; N16m from Dean Musa Nig. Ltd.; N19m from Ababia Ventures Ltd. and N21m from MBR Computers.
The accused persons allegedly deposited the monies into personal account 2027642863 domiciled in United Bank for Africa Plc.
The offences of taking gratification by public officers are said to be contrary to Section 10 of the ICPC Act 2000. They are said to be punishable under the same section of the Act.
Similarly, the trio are also accused of conspiracy and criminal breach of trust. This is contrary to section 315 of the Penal Code Act and punishable under the same section. The diversion of funds is also contrary to Section 96 of the Penal Code Act 2004 and punishable under Section 97 of the same Act.
Saleh Indicted Amidst Promotion Prospects
Saleh is line to succeed the outgoing Secretary of the council, Mr. Danladi Halilu. He is among those shortlisted for final consideration by the National Judicial Council. This indictment will however dent his chances of getting the coveted position.
On the whole, the accused will be facing nine counts of conspiracy, criminal breach of trust. A date has not been fixed for their arraignment.
In the same vein, the Federal Government will soon approach the court to file charges against some of the arrested judges.