Friday, June 28, 2019

Ex-Minister, Lai Mohammed to appear in court over N2.5bn NBC case

Lai Mohammed, the immediate past Minister of Information and Culture has been scheduled to appear before a Federal High Court, Abuja, to explain his role in the alleged misapplication of N2.5 billion Federal Government Digital Switch-Over (DSO) programme.

The planned appearance of Lai was revealed by the Independent Corrupt Practice and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), who is prosecuting the Director General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Ishaq Kawu, over an alleged abuse of office and money laundering.

The ICPC said this in a post on its website on Thursday.


The anti-graft body had filed a 12-count charge before Justice Folashade Ogunbanjo-Giwa, against Mr Kawu, Lucky Omoluwa and Dipo Onifade, the Chairman and Chief Operating Officer of Pinnacle Communications Limited respectively, saying that the NBC director general misled the former minister into approving government funds to a private company.

The former minister’s involvement had come under questioning following discovery by ICPC during investigations, that a government White Paper that governs the execution of the DSO programme, was allegedly flouted by the head of NBC.

Mr Mohammed had however admitted in a statement to the Commission that he was misled by Kawu, as opined in court by a witness from ICPC, Osanato Olugbemi.

Mr Olugbemi, led in evidence by counsel to ICPC, Henry Emore, also told the court that the payment of N2.5 billion from NBC to Pinnacle Communications Limited, as seed grant was suspicious because ICPC found out through its investigations that only government owned company was approved to benefit from the grant according to the White Paper.

The court also heard that the processes that led to the final payment of the fund to the private company were shrouded in secrecy as revealed by the minute from an NBC emergency board management meeting where issues of carriage fees owed Pinnacle and not seed grant was discussed.

3 comments:

  1. some people are pushing this story so that buhari won't re-appoint him. Let them continue their already failed plan

    ReplyDelete