A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, Nigeria, on Friday, April 27, 2018, granted bail to Senator Peter Nwaoboshi, representing Delta North in the National Assembly, on self-recognizance, over an alleged N322m fraud case brought against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
Justice Mohammed Idris, who presided over the sitting, also directed Senator Nwaoboshi to provide two sureties who will each sign a bail bond of N50m within 72 hours.
The Delta North lawmaker, who was charged with an alleged fraud of N322m, was equally asked to deposit his international passport in the court pending the conclusion of the case.
Justice Idris further ruled that Senator Nwaoboshi cannot travel out of the country without the court’s permission until the end of the case.
The matter was then adjourned to June 13 and 20, 2018 for the commencement of trial.
Recall that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, had charged Senator Nwaoboshi with an alleged fraud of N322m and listed Golden Touch Construction Project Limited and Suiming Electricals Limited as second and third defendants respectively.
The EFCC charges stated that Nwaoboshi and Golden Touch Construction Project Limited purchased a property known as Guinea House, Marine Road, Apapa, Lagos for N805m between May and June 2014 and alleged that the N322m out of the N805m, which Nwaoboshi and the firm paid for the property, was part of proceeds of “an unlawful act, to wit: fraud.”
According to the EFCC, the N322m was transferred to the vendor of the property on the order of Suiming Electricals Limited and the EFCC also accused Suiming Electricals Limited of aiding Nwaoboshi and Golden Touch Construction Project Limited to commit money laundering on or about May 14, 2014.
The prosecution said the defendants acted contrary to sections 18(a) and15(2)(d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2011 and are liable to punishment under Section 15(3) of the same Act.
The defendants had pleaded not guilty upon their arraignment and after having listened to the arguments, Justice Idris granted conditionals bail to Senator Nwaoboshi, pending when the matter will come up for proper hearing in June.
Reacting to the bail granted to Senator Nwoboshi, a pan Delta North group, the Ofuobi Anioma Group, in a swift statement issued by Mr. Cyprian C. Odifili, described it as a victory for Anioma Group.
This group’s declaration, released by the
OFUOBI ANIOMA MEDIA CREW, was contained in their statement titled: “THE BAIL GRANTED TO SENATOR NWAOBOSHI IS A SIGN OF HIS VINDICATION AND VICTORY FOR ANIOMA PEOPLE “- Ofuobi Anioma, and reads thus:
“Delta North senatorial district of Delta State, Nigeria, on Friday, 27th April, 2018, was thrown into a wild jubilation as the news of the bail granted to their most trusted representative at the National Assembly, Senator Peter Nwaoboshi by an Ikoyi High Court of Justice, Lagos State, became viral.
“Senator Peter Nwaoboshi was earlier on arraigned before the court and charged for offences which some political analysts believes was politically motivated as well as a political witch-hunt and the handiwork of the Senator’s detractors.
“Reacting to the development, the National coordinator of OFUOBI ANIOMA GROUP Hon. Louis Ndukwe while addressing newsmen in Lagos immediately after the court ruling described the decision of the court in granting Senator Nwaoboshi bail as a sign that the most distinguished Senator Peter Nwaoboshi will be vindicated in a short time.
“Speaking further, Hon. Louis Ndukwe said that the current development which has thrown the cities, towns and villages of Delta North Senatorial District into a wild jubilation is a visibly sign that it is a victory for Anioma people at large.
“While commending the members of OFUOBI ANIOMA GROUP and the entire Anioma people for the massive show of love and solidarity for distinguished Senator Peter Nwaoboshi. The political gladiator who is currently the Executive Chairman of Oshimili North Council also distinctly expressed appreciation to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Oshimili people for standing solidly behind Senator Nwaoboshi during the difficult time. Adding that it is a testimony that SPON antecedents came to play and he will be returned to the National Assembly by 2019 in consolidation of his enviable and highly recommendable developmental strides across Delta North, Delta State, Niger Delta and Nigeria at large.
“However, Hon. Louis Ndukwe also commended the youth wing of OFUOBI ANIOMA GROUP for being calm and law abiding throughout the period,” the statement concluded.