EFCC files criminal charges against ex-NIMASA boss

Akpobolokemi (former NIMASA boss)The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is set to commence the prosecution of the former Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) over alleged financial crimes he committed while in office.

The anti-graft agency, in charge sheet number FHC/L/496C/C5 dated 20th November 2015, filed a 30-count charge against the embattled former NIMASA boss. Akpobolokemi was charged alongside the current Executive Director (Maritime Safety & Shipping Development) of the agency, Captain Ezekiel Bala Agaba and six other serving Directors and Assistant Directors namely Ekene Nwakuche, Felix Bob-Nabena, Captain Warredi Enisuoh, Governor Amachee Juan, Ugo Frederick and Timi Alari. Two companies – Al-Kenzo Limited and Penniel Engineering Services Limited – were charged along with the accused persons.

Count One of the charge, filed at the Federal High Court Lagos reads: “That you, Patrick Ziadeke Akpobolokemi, Captain Ezekiel Bala Agaba, Ekene Nwakuche, Felix Bob·Nabena, Captain Warredi Enisuoh, Governor Amechee Juan, Ugo Fredrick, Timi Alari. AI-Kenzo Ltd and Peniel Engineering Services Ltd on or about the 20th day of December, 2013 in Lagos, within the Jurisdiction of this Court did conspire amongst yourselves to commit an offence, to wit: Conversion of the sum of N1, 151, 214,000.00 (One Billion, One Hundred and Fifty One Million, Two , Hundred and Fourteen Thousand Naira), property of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, which sum was derived from stealing and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 18(a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act, 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.”

Count Two states: “That you, Patrick Ziadeke Akpobolokeml, Captain Ezekiel Bala Agaba, Ekene Nwakuche and AI-Kenzo Ltd, Felix Bob-Nabena, Captain Warredi Enisuoh, Governor Amechee Juan, Ugo Fredrick, Timi Alarl, Al-Kenzo Ltd and Peniel Engineering Services Ltd between the 23rd day of December, 2013 and the 19thday of December, 2014 in Lagos within the jurisdiction of this Court did commit an offence, to wit Conversion of the sum of N861, 500,000.00 (Eight Hundred and Sixty One Million, Five Hundred Thousand Naira Only) property of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15(1} of the Money laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.”

Count Three reads: “That you, Patrick Ziadeke Akpobolokemi, Captain Ezekiel Bala Agaba, Ekene Nwakuche and AI-Kenzo Ltd, Felix Bob-Nabena, Captain Warredi Enisuoh, Governor Amechee Juan, Ugo Fredrick, Timi Alarl, Al-Kenzo Ltd and Peniel Engineering Services Ltd between the 7th and 15th day of July, 2015 in Lagos within the Jurisdiction of this Court did commit an offence to wit Conversion of the sum of N235,380,000.00 (Two Hundred and Thirty Five Million Three Hundred and Eighty Naira Only) property of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency” while Count 30 states “That you Patrick Ziadeke Akpobolokemi, Captain Ezekiel Bala Agaba, Governor Amechee Juan and Ekene Nwakuche on or about the 23rd of December 2013. In Lagos, within the Jurisdiction of this Court did commit an offence to wit. Conversion of the sum of N94,300,000.00 (Ninety Four Million, Three Hundred Thousand Naira) property of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 15(1) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.”

The charge sheet was signed by EFCC prosecutors Festus Keyamo and Rotimi Oyedepo Iseoluwa. The case is awaiting assignment to a judge.

It would be recalled that Akpobolokemi was sacked by President Muhammadu Buhari as Director General of NIMASA on July 16. He has since his sack been under investigation for alleged financial misappropriation by the EFCC and the Department of State Security (DSS).

By Pita Ochai

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