The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission has uncovered the sum of $919,207 (about N350 million at approximately N381/$1) hidden by workers of the Federal High Court in Rivers State in secret bank accounts.
The ICPC recovered the sum from the two workers identified as Chief Registrar, and the Deputy Registrar of the Federal High Court, which they hid in a Port Harcourt branch of the Union Bank of Nigeria.
SaharaReporters learnt that the money was the sum of the sale of a confiscated vessel which ought to be forfeited to the Nigerian government but was hidden by the two workers.
The ICPC received a petition written against some officials of the court for alleged violation of ICPC Act 2000, and the commission’s special investigation team uncovered the money.
According to the ICPC, while ruling on the Interim Order of Forfeiture, Justice Mohammed Sani, of the Federal High Court, Port Harcourt, granted the Commission’s prayers for interim forfeiture of the sum pending the final hearing of the case.
“In his ruling on the Motion on Notice for the final forfeiture of the money, Justice Sani held that he was satisfied that ICPC had placed sufficient evidence before the court to justify a final forfeiture of the contentious money.
“He therefore ordered Union Bank, Station Road branch, Port Harcourt to immediately pay the money into the Federal Government’s Treasury Single Account as the money in question rightly belonged to the Federal Government of Nigeria,” the ICPC said.