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Reps panel directs ICPC to return recovered N925m to Environment ministry

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Nana Fatima Mede

Nana Fatima Mede

THE House of Representatives has directed the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) to within seven days, return the N924 million recovered by the agency to the Ministry of Environment.

The N924,989,776.96 million meant for Great Green Wall project was subject of a fraudulent transfer, which led to the anti-graft agency keeping it in a special recovery account.

Chairman, House Committee on Environment, Uche Ekwunife, while commending the agency for a good job however reminded the ICPC that the money was meant for a project for the benefit of Nigerians and should therefore not be kept in perpetuity by the agency having been recovered by the authorities.

Fielding questions when she appeared before the committee yesterday, the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Environment, Nana Fatima Mede, told the committee how the N924,989,776.96 million was fraudulently transferred from the Great Green Wall project account being kept by First City Monument Bank (FCMB).

According to her, the bank alerted her of the illegal transfer on November 28 2014 and she immediately contacted officials of the anti-graft agency.

The intervention of the ICPC, according to her, led to the stoppage of the fraudulent transfer out of which N400 million could not be transferred by the scammers.

The Chairman, ICPC, Ekpo Nta, said the Commission swung into action after the agency was contacted, a development which led to the recovery of the entire money.

He also disclosed that the major suspect behind the scam, Adeolu Adeyanju, the Chief Executive Officer of Detwinx Global Services Limited, who fled the country after the discovery was later apprehended when he recently sneaked into the country.

He said though investigation into the matter was still continuing because the agency was interested in how the operation was successfully carried out, Adeyanju and some bank workers have been charged to court.

The committee chairman, Ekwunife, commended the permanent secretary for her timely response and the efficiency of the ICPC operatives.
She, however, said everyone involved in the scam must be prosecuted, adding, “We want punishment for all those indicted, including bank workers, civil servants and everyone involved. We cannot continue to condone this kind of attitude in our banks.”


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