Ex-minister Agunloye Seeks AGF, NBA, Others Intervention In Alleged $6b Fraud

Agunloye

A former Minister of Power and Steel, Olu Agunloye, is facing a $6 billion alleged fraud charge for the Mambilla Hydroelectric Plant, has requested the intervention of Minister of Justice, Lateef Fagbemi.

He also sought the intervention of Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) President Yakubu Maikyau, former Minister of Justice Kanu Agabi, and Joseph Daudu.

Agunloye is challenging the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission’s (EFCC) authority to prosecute him for the charge before an FCT High Court.

The EFCC is prosecuting Agunloye, who served as a minister in the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo, for alleged infractions connected to the Mambilla power plant.

The former minister is charged with forgery, disobedience of presidential order, and corruption.

The EFCC’s accusation against Agunloye is that he awarded a contract to Sunrise Power and Transmission Company to construct the 3,960 MW Mambilla Hydroelectric Power Station on a build, operate, and transfer (BOT) basis without the necessary budgetary provision, approval, or financial backing.

The prosecution claimed to have traced questionable payments from Sunrise Power to the former minister’s accounts.

The defendant pleaded not guilty.

During the resumed hearing, the prosecuting counsel, Abba Mohammed, stated that the court was scheduled to hear two motions filed by the defendant: one regarding the variation of his bail conditions and the other a preliminary objection to the charge.

He told the court the prosecution had filed counter affidavits to the two motions.

However, Agunloye’s counsel, Adeola Adedipe, stated that he had filed a new motion on behalf of his client. This motion urged the court to invite amicus curiae (friends of the court) to be present during the hearing of the preliminary objection.

He added the application had to be heard before the preliminary objection.

 

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