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NPA’s boss, Bello Koko, in EFCC trouble over alleged N829mln fraud, others

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An investigative report by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has found Mohammed Bello Koko, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), guilty of N829 million fraud in kickbacks and money laundering activities.

The EFCC probe report on Sunday revealed that Koko after being investigated was found to have received the N829 million from NPA contractors, and in cash sums from individuals and companies.

The EFCC carried out a “financial profiling” of Koko in August 2021 and found out that the NPA MD worked with an associate, Ali Amin Abubakar and had benefitted from awards of contracts totalling N1,107,654,133 from the Rivers State Government and others.

At the time the report was done, Koko was the acting Managing Director of the NPA. Following the suspension of Hadiza Bala Usman as the Managing Director of NPA by President Muhammadu Buhari, the Presidency announced Koko as her replacement in an acting capacity.

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Koko was previously the director of finance and administration at NPA. Buhari in February 2022 confirmed Koko as substantive managing director of the NPA.

“Consequently, the foregoing strongly infer the subject’s and associates’ complicity in acts of abuse of office, misappropriation of public funds, fraud and money laundering,” the EFCC report said.

In the introduction section, the EFCC probe report said, “The Directorate received information that the acting NPA MD, Koko was involved in receiving kickbacks from NPA contractors and was involved in money laundering activities. Mohammed Koko is the current MD of the NPA.

“From 2005 to 2015, he worked at the Zenith Bank PLC in Port Harcourt, where he rose to the position of Assistant General Manager before being appointed as the NPA’s Executive Director, Finance and Administration.”

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“During the term of former Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, he was also the designated Zenith Bank account officer for the Rivers State Government. According to reports, Mohammed Koko was brought before a Federal High Court in Port Harcourt by the EFCC in 2009 together with three other top officials of Zenith Bank on charges of fraud totalling N3.6 billion,” the probe report further revealed.

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The report noted that his financial profile showed that he had several accounts in five banks.
The EFCC went on to analyse Koko’s bank accounts and the amounts of money in inflow and outflow which all confirmed the alleged fraudulent acts of the NPA boss.

In the summary of findings in the report, the EFCC investigation team said, “One, Mohammed Bello Koko received payments in cash and transfers totalling N829 million into his Zenith Bank personal account between 2015 and May 2021.
“Two, he is a director at M.B.K Business consults and Cethes company which Ali Amin Abubakar is also a director in both companies.”

The EFCC in the report recommended the prosecution of Koko for the various fraud and money laundering discoveries alongside his alleged accomplice, Ali Abubakar.

“It is recommended that the Operations department should investigate the capital expenditure accounts and tenders board minutes of the NPA during Mohammed Koko’s tenure as executive director, finance and administration preparatory to his possible prosecution alongside his suspected accomplice, Ali AMIN Abubakar,” the report concluded.

Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari appointed Mohammed Bello Koko as the substantive Managing Director of the NPA.

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Meanwhile, the Pandora Papers in 2021 revealed that Bello Koko was behind two shell companies incorporated in a tax haven to anonymously invest in the United Kingdom property market.
This potentially violates Nigeria’s public service code of conduct laws.

Pandora Papers also disclosed that he and his wife, Agatha Anne Koko, enlisted the services of financial secrecy seller, Cook Worldwide and Alemán, Cordero, Galindo & Lee (Alcogal), an offshore law firm, to register Coulwood Limited (reg. number: 1487897) and Marney Limited (reg. number: 1487944) in the British Virgin Islands (BVI), one of the world’s most commonly used tax havens, in 2008.

Both companies were registered on the same day, June 19, 2008.

Though a public servant, Bello Koko is also a director of the two companies, in violation of Nigeria’s Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act (Sections 5 and 6).

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Crime

Lagos Police Arrest Suspects With Vandalised Rail Tracks

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A patrol team from Ijora Badia Police division has arrested two suspects conveying vandalised rail tracks in Lagos State.

The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, SP Benjamin Hundeyin, disclosed this via his Twitter handle on Monday.

He said, “At about 1am today, a patrol team from Ijora Badia Division intercepted a Mitsubishi Lancer car conveying vandalised railway tracks. The two occupants of the vehicle have been arrested. Investigation is ongoing.”

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Toyin Abraham takes Legal action against Revolution plus property scam

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Actress Toyin Abraham has now taken legal actions against Revolution Plus property by having her lawyers sent them an official statement confirming her dissociation from the brand.

Taking to her Instagram page moments ago to share the legal documents, Toyin Abraham wrote:

PUBLIC DISCLAIMER

DISASSOCIATION FROM REVOLUTIONPLUS PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT COMPANY LIMITED

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We are Solicitors to Mrs. Olutoyin Abosede Ajeyemi Abraham, (hereinafter referred to ‘our Client’) and on whose instruction we write the above-captioned letter.

Our Client wishes to disassociate herself from the brand, Revolutionplus (hereinafter referred to ‘the company). This disclaimer is premised on the fact that our client’s contract with the Company as a Brand Ambassador has been effectively terminated and the compelling need to disassociate herself from the image of the Brand.

Despite the above promises, I was still receiving various threats messages, curses, complaints and pleas from investors claiming they had not been allocated any land or refunded their monies. Some of them further claimed that because I represented the Company as a brand ambassador, I reposed their confidence in the
Company to invest their monies. I became sad, worried, and disturbed and decided to stop my social media publications and advertisement of the Company’s products.

When the pressure and harassment became embarrassingly unbearable both online on all my social media platforms and offline, and with my integrity at stake, I sent a mail to the Company on the 15th June 2022 notifying them of my intent to terminate my contract as a Brand Ambassador. The Company reached out to me on the 16th of June 2022, we had a meeting and they promised to promptly and effectively address the allegations. Upon the premise of the promises made, I sent another mail on the 17th June 2022 cancelling my notice of intent to terminate my contract as a brand ambassador.

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In view of the above termination which I accept in good faith and totality, and considering the recent similar messages I have received from aggrieved customers from the brand, I hereby disassociate myself from the brand and advise that all persons dealing with the brand conduct their respective due diligence’.

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It was in the wake of my decision to reduce the brand’s visibility and advertisement on my social media platforms, especially because my integrity as a person is being questioned daily, that I received a ‘Notice of Termination of Brand Ambassadorship’ letter on the 22nd December 2022 by the Company’s legal team, which effectively terminated my contract with them on grounds of reduced affection and reluctant approach towards publicly identifying with the brand.

While performing my duties as contained in the contract, I started receiving a lot of allegations and complaints from investors who claimed the Company has not allocated lands nor refunded them their monies. Some of these investors were in my DM (Direct Message) demanding for refund of their monies or allocation of the lands they paid for.

Please find below the official statement from our Client:

‘After carefully conducting my due diligence and being personally convinced about the genuineness of the Company, I proceeded to sign a contractual agreement in July 2020, thereby becoming a brand ambassador to market the property products of the Company, Revolutionplus. This duty I carried out with utmost loyalty, diligence, integrity and excellence, which are the core values I stand for.

 

 

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Probe abortion report, feminists urge FG

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Nigerian feminists have urged the Federal Government, through the National Human Rights Commission, to probe the forced abortions report allegedly perpetuated by the military in the northeastern part of Nigeria.

An international news agency, Reuters, had accused the Nigerian Army of running a programme where forceful abortions were carried out on female victims of Boko Haram/Islamic State in West African Province.

The report claimed that the Army carried out the abortions without the persons’ consent and that at least 10,000 pregnancies had been illegally terminated.

These were contained in an investigation published by the news agency in December, 2022.

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The probe, according to Reuters, was based on the accounts of 33 victims, hospital workers, and security officials, as well as documents gathered.

Reacting in a statement obtained by The PUNCH on Tuesday, the feminists, namely, Chioma Agwuegbo, Fadekemi Akinfaderin, Dr Leena Hoffmann, Ifeoma Ikwueme, Azeenarh Mohammed, Nana Nwachukwu, Lola Okolosie, Omolara Oriye and Buky Williams, said, “Friday marks six weeks since the Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Lucky Irabor, called on the NHRC to launch an investigation into the abortion report.”

They therefore called on the NHRC to make public its plans to take the investigation forward, expand its remit to look at the alleged killings of children, and commit to doing so in a victim-centred way.

Copyright @punchnewspaper

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