A Federal High Court in Abuja Friday ordered the interim forfeiture of a bank account of the former governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari. The accounts of two firms linked to the former governor – Kayatawa Nigeria Ltd and BT Oil and Gas Nigeria Limited – were also affected.
ICPC through its lawyer, Osuobeni Akponimisingha, filed an ex parte application following an intelligence report that Yari and the two companies “are involved in some unlawful activity against the interest of the Zamfara State Government and by extension the Federal Government of Nigeria.”
The commission alleged that Yari and the companies received various funds belonging to the Zamfara State Government through their accounts with two commercial banks. The alleged funds in the accounts as of the time of filing the application are N24,289,910 and $669, 248.
This came some days after the anti-graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crime Commission raided the residence of the former governor over financial crimes allegations.Yari is being investigated for alleged questionable payment of N19 billion from the London-Paris Club refund; N35 billion spent on internally displaced persons (IDPs); ecological and stabilisation fund and how he incurred N151,190,477,572.02 liabilities on ongoing projects.
“What we fight is economic and financial crimes. Whatever allegations we have should be centred around economic and financial crimes,” EFCC spokesman Tony Orilade said.
Justice Taiwo Taiwo, however, ordered ICPC to publish the order in a national daily within 14 days. He also asked the Yari and the affected parties to appear in court September 11 to state why the “funds should not be permanently forfeited to the federal government.”