Home / News / Local / EFCC arraigns ex-Power Minister for N148m PHCH severance benefit bribe

EFCC arraigns ex-Power Minister for N148m PHCH severance benefit bribe

Wakil in court
Mohammed Wakil

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Monday, March 8, 2021 arraigned a former minister of state for power, Muhammed Wakil, before Justice S.B.Belgore of the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Apo, Abuja on a two counts charge of corruption and abuse of office.

Wakil was arraigned alongside two companies, Corozzeria Nigeria Limited and Pikat Properties Nigeria Limited, for allegedly receiving N148,000,000.00 (One Hundred and forty Eight Million Naira Only), as gratification from Bestworth Insurance Brokers Limited out of the N27,188,232,208.00(Twenty Seven Billion, One hundred and Eighty Eight million, two hundred and thirty two thousand ,Two hundred and Eight Naira, Twenty Kobo) approved outstanding insurance premiums and claims of deceased and incapacitated staff of Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN.

Count one of the charge reads; “That you Muhammed Wakil, while being Minister of Power and managing director of Corozzeria Nigeria Limited, and Corozzeria Nigeria Limited, on or about 22nd December, 2014, in Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did corruptly receive the sum of N118,000,000.00(One Hundred and Eighteen Million) Naira only through Corozzeria Nigeria Limited’s Polaris Bank Account No. 4010023658 from Bestworth Insurance Brokers Limited out of the sum of N27,188,232,208.20(Twenty Seven Billion, One Hundred and Eighty Eight Million, Two Hundred and Thirty-two Thousand ,Two Hundred and Eight Naira, Twenty Kobo) only being the sum approved for the payment of outstanding insurance premiums and claims of deceased and incapacitated staff of Power Holding Company of Nigeria( PHCN), and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 8(1)(a) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000 and punishable under Section 8(1)(b)(ii)of the same Act.”

When the charges were read, the defendant pleaded “not guilty.”

Counsel for the prosecution, Benjamin Manji asked the court to set a date for commencement of trial and remand the defendant at a Correctional Centre, pending trial.

However counsel for the defendants, B.C Igwilo SAN, prayed the court to grant bail to the 1st defendant. “My lord, our humble application is for the first defendant to be admitted to bail, “he said

But the prosecution counsel opposed the oral application, while urging the Court to order the defendant to file the application formally.

Justice Belgore adjourned the matter till March 31, 2021 for determination of bail application and remanded the defendant in the custody of the EFCC.

Operatives of the EFCC had arrested Wakil in his residence in Abuja for the purpose of his arraignment.

The anti-corruption agency had in 2018 arraigned Wakil, and four others at the Federal High Court, Maiduguri, Borno State for another case of an alleged collection of $115 million from a former minister of petroleum resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke, to influence the outcome of the 2015 presidential election.

Born on February 6, 1965, in Damboa Local Government of Borno State and a law graduate from the University of Maiduguri, Wakil was the Minister of State for Power in Nigeria during the Dr. Goodluck Jonathan administration.

He was also a member of the National Assembly and vice chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (North East).

During the Obasanjo/Atiku first democratic term (Nigeria’s Fourth Republic) from 1999 to 2003, Wakil was the majority leader in the House of Representatives.

 

About Global Patriot Staff

Check Also

We have critical security situation in South-East, South-South – I-G

By Monday Ijeh Abuja, April 9, 2021 The Acting Inspector- General of Police (I-G), Mr …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *