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CBN Director: How I Collected $600,000 Bribe For Emefiele



A former Director of Information Technology of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. John Ayoh, has explained how he collected $600,000 allegedly for contract gratification for the embattled ex-apex bank governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele.

Ayoh, while being led in evidence by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) counsel, Mr. Rotimi Oyedepo (SAN), on Monday, April 29, told an Ikeja Special Offences Court that he spent eight years in the apex bank.

He told the court that he received a letter from the agency concerning two transactions which he facilitated through Emefiele.

Ayoh, Head of Procurement and Support Services (PSS) Department, told the court that the first envelope containing $400,000 was brought to his house in Lekki while he received the second envelope containing $200,000 at the Tinubu Head Office of the CBN.

Ayoh said he was vested with powers to receive applications for award of contracts to select successful bidders.

According to him, the first leg of the transaction was at his residence in Lekki Phase One while the second envelope money he received occurred at the Tinubu Head Office of the CBN.

He said: “The man to deliver the second transaction came to our office in Lagos and I informed the governor but he said he did not want to see a third party that I should bring the envelope myself.

“I complied with the instruction and went to his office and delivered it. Mr John Adeola was the one I sent my address to and he came to my house. He is the governor’s assistant and the total money I received on his behalf was $400,000 and $200,000, respectively.”

The witness informed the court that the vendors who allegedly brought the envelopes with money were in charge of the implementation of Netapp Storage Architectural and Infrastructural Services.

While under cross-examination by the first defence counsel, Mr. Olalekan Ojo (SAN), he told the court that his schedule of duties did not include running errands for Emefiele but he directly worked under him.

Ayoh confirmed to the court that Emefiele was not a member of the PSS but a member of the Major Contract Tender Committee (MCTC).

He added that he had never facilitated in the commission of any crime.

Ojo asked if the witness wrote in his statement that he was forced to aid or abet the commission of accepting gratification.

The witness said: “I do not remember the exact word that I used and I did not write in my statement that I opened the two envelopes on the two occasions to check the total sum of money.

“I wrote a statement and it implied that the money in the envelopes was given to me to influence the award of contract. I did not take part in the decision of the MCTC but I recommended that the award be given and I was not bribed.

“I was invited by the EFCC on February 17, I was not arrested but I returned home on administrative bail.”

The witness told the court that he operated under duress, while he received the two envelopes from the contractors.

“On your honour, did you indicate in your statement that you were acting under duress while running errands for the first defendant,” the learned silk asked.

The prosecution, however, objected to the question and argued that the statement of the witness was not before the court.

The first defence counsel sought that the statement of the defendant be admitted into evidence.

Justice Rahman Oshodi, thereafter, admitted the statement of the witness (three pages) into evidence, following arguments and counter arguments of the counsel.

The Senior Advocate reteirated that the witness showed to the court where it was written in his statement that he acted under duress.

The witness told the court that the instructions from Emefiele indicated that he bent rules.

The judge, thereafter, adjourned the case until May 3 for continuation of cross-examination.

Emefiele’s counsel also pleaded with the court to release the defendant to him on self-recognition because he had not met with his bail application.

The learned silk, however, prayed the court that the defendant would meet up before May 17.

There was no objections from the second defence counsel and the prosecution left the decision at the discretion of the court.


News and Report

Just In: President Tinubu approves N70,000 minimum wage





President Bola Tinubu has approved N70,000 as the new minimum wage for Nigerian workers with a promise to review the national minimum wage law every three years.


More details later…

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Gov. Zulum Clarifies Son’s Purported Killing Of Chinese National At Indian Nightclub




The Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, has denied reports alleging that one of the sons has been arrested and sentenced to prison for the murder of some Indian citizens.

Reports has it that there were unverified rumours, especially on social media platforms, alleging that the first son of the governor, Umar Zulum Umara, killed the Chinese national during a fight at an Indian nightclub.

However, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on New Media, Abdurrahman Ahmed Bundi, dismissed the reports in a statement on Wednesday.

According to him, no son of the governor was arrested or charged with any crime.

The statement read, “attention of the Borno State Governor’s Media Unit has been drawn to rumours circulating that the son of the Borno State Governor has been arrested for the alleged murder of some Indian citizens.

“This misinformation was published in an online blog, Nairaland, titled “Son of Borno State Governor Murders Someone In India—Politics.” The blog claimed that the Governor also travelled to India, attempting to use diplomatic status to resolve the matter.

“It is on record that Governor Babagana Zulum was on a one-month vacation in Saudi Arabia for the 2024 Hajj and later travelled to Egypt to attend the annual ASUWAN forum conference in Cairo.

“The Media Unit would like to clarify and set the record straight that Nairaland and other online blogs have mischievously spread defamatory content without any speck of truth.

“We hereby warned Nairaland and all those who have spread the false information to pull down this misinformation from its website and platforms within the next 24 hours and offer an unreserved apology to Governor Zulum, his son, and the entire family, or risk legal action. The Governor shall also not hesitate to take legal action against any media outlet that continues to publicise this defamatory information on its platform.

“We would like to inform the public that none of Governor’s Zulum’s son was either arrested or charged with any crime, or involved in any unlawful activities anywhere.

“We urge the public to exercise caution when consuming and sharing information, particularly when it comes from unverified sources and blogs instead of credible media outlets.

“We enjoin all media organisations to engage in responsible journalism of truth and factual verification while recognising the potential harm and psychological trauma the spread of false information might have caused to the Governor’s family.”


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Over 600,000 Nigerians sought asylum abroad under Buhari – Report




Over 600,000 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries between 2016 and 2023, which were years under the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

Buhari was President from 2015 to 2023 and handed over to President Bola Tinubu who was sworn in on May 29, 2023, after winning in the general elections the same year.

According to a report released on Wednesday, July 17, 2024, by Statisense, a data collection organisation, of a total of 664,384 in eight years, 355,792 persons sought asylum between 2016 and 2019 while 308,592 sought asylum between 2020 and 2023.

On a year-by-year basis, 66,862 sought asylum in 2016, 91,924 in 2017, 84,624 (2018), 112,382 (2019), 73,233 (2020), 83,105 (2021), 83,402 (2022), and 68,852 in 2023.

The figures indicate a surge from the past years, as Statisense noted that within 12 years – 2004 to 2015 – only 204,791 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries.

In total, 869,175 Nigerians filed for asylum in the last 20 years, notably from 2004 to 2023.

The report was posted on the organisation’s handle @StatiSense, citing the United Nations Refugee Agency.

In another report shared by the organisation on Wednesday, it was stated that the Republic of Niger topped countries with the most Nigerian refugees in 2023 with about 200,497 Nigerians and a total of 1,268,464 Nigerian refugees between 2015 and 2023.

Niger, a border country, shares proximity with Nigeria’s north, where residents battle a spate of insecurity in the region ranging from banditry, terrorism and herdsmen-farmers crisis.

Another report also revealed that Nigerians topped the list of African countries who sought asylum in Canada in 2023 with about 10,111 asylum seekers followed by Kenya with 1,345.  It stated that 1,345 Nigerians however sought asylum in the United Kingdom and 5,136 in the United States of America.

Source: The Punch

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