Author Archives: Charles I. O.

BREAKING: House of Reps Pass N10.59tn 2020 Budget

The House of Representatives has passed the 2020 budget of 10,594,362,364,830 naira.

During plenary on Thursday, the lawmakers insisted that the budget will run from 1st January to 31st December 2020, thereby returning the country to the January to December budget cycle.

In the budget, the ministry of works gets the highest capital allocation of 315,563,564,269 while education gets a capital budget of 84,728,529,572.

The health sector follows closely with a capital budget of 59,909,430,837.

The national assembly also increased its budget from 125 billion to 128 billion.

BREAKING: Orji Kalu to spend 12 years in prison for fraud – Court Rules

A Lagos Division of the Federal High Court, on Thursday, sentenced a serving senator and ex-governor of Abia State, Orji Kalu, to 12 years in prison for N7.65 billion fraud.

Justice Mohammed Idris who delivered the sentence had earlier declared him guilty of the charge in the case that had been on for 12 years.

Mr Kalu was tried alongside his company, Slok Nigeria Limited, and Udeh Udeogu, who was Director of Finance and Accounts at the Abia State Government House during Mr Kalu’s tenure as governor.

In an amended 39 counts charge, they were accused by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission of conspiring and diverting over N7 billion from the coffers of the state.

In one of the counts, the EFCC alleged that Mr Kalu, who was Abia State Governor between 1999 and 2007, “did procure Slok Nigeria Limited – a company solely owned by you and members of your family – to retain in its account, domiciled with the then Inland Bank Plc, Apapa branch, Lagos, an aggregate sum of N7,197,871,208.7 on your behalf.”

The prosecution claimed that the N7.1 billion “formed part of the funds illegally derived from the treasury of the Abia State Government and which was converted into several bank drafts before they were paid into the said company’s account.”

The prosecuting counsel, Rotimi Jacobs, said the ex-governor violated Section 17(c) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2004, and was liable to be punished under Section 16 of the same Act.

Apart from the N7.1bn, which he was accused of laundering, the ex-governor and the other defendants were also accused of receiving a total of N460 million allegedly stolen from the Abia State Government treasury between July and December 2002.

The prosecutor said they breached Section 427 of the Criminal Code Act, Cap 77, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 1990.

The defendants had pleaded not guilty to all counts.

During the trial, the prosecution called 19 witnesses while the defendants testified on behalf of themselves .

Full details of sentence coming shortly…

BREAKING: Transfer Of El-Zakzaky, Wife From DSS Custody To Correctional Facility – Court Orders

A Kaduna state high court sitting in the state capital has ordered that the embattled leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky and his wife be transferred from the custody of the DSS to a correctional centre in the state.

The trial judge, Justice Gideon Kudafa in his ruling on Thursday says the decision to remand the IMN leader and his wife in a correctional facility is to enable their lawyers and doctors to have easy access to them.

He, therefore, adjourned the case to February the 6th for the commencement of trial.

The IMN leader is facing trial over allegations of culpable homicide, unlawful assembly, and disruption of the public peace, among other charges.

The trial judge, Justice Gideon Kudafa had on March the 26th adjourned the case indefinitely following his appointment as a member of the Election Petition Tribunal in Yobe State.

El-Zakzaky and his wife were not in court during the last proceedings, although their counsel, Femi Falana, claimed that their absence was due to their deteriorated health conditions.

He and his wife (Zeenat) were denied bail by the presiding judge during the last sitting on January 22, 2018.

In the application for bail filed by El Zakzaky’s lawyer, Femi Falana, on his behalf at the last sitting, the legal practitioner prayed the court to give a mandatory order for his client and his wife to be flown abroad.

Falana, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, informed the court that this was to enable them to receive proper medical attention since the Federal Government has glaringly failed to cure them of the injuries they sustained during the alleged army’s onslaught on their residence in December 2015.

The judge in his ruling, however, ordered that El Zakzaky should be allowed by the government to bring doctors of his choice to examine him in the presence of doctors from the government before the date of the next sitting.

With the absence of the trial judge, Counsel to the IMN leader, Mr. Falana, filed a fresh application at another court of equal jurisdiction on July the 18th asking it to grant his clients leave to seek medical attention abroad and thereafter return for the continuation of their trial.

Consequently, on August the 5th, the presiding judge, Justice Darius Khobo ordered that the IMN leader and his wife be accompanied abroad by officials of the Kaduna State government.

The presiding judge ruled that El-Zakzaky and his wife should proceed to India for medical treatment, after which they will return to Nigeria to face their trial.

BREAKING: Court convicts Senator Orji Kalu of N7.2 billion fraud

A federal High court in Lagos on Thursday found a former Abia State Governor, Orji Kalu, guilty of fraud.

Justice Mohammed Idris who read the judgement is yet to pronounce the sentence for the offences for which Mr Kalu stands convicted.

After stating that Mr Kalu was guilty of the offence, his lawyers are attempting to persuade the court for a favourable sentence.

Mr Kalu has been facing trial for over a decade after he was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for allegedly carting away billions of naira while he served as Abia State governor.

Also charged along with Mr Kalu is a company, Slok Nig. Ltd.

Mr Idris concluded the trial in August.

On October 22, both the prosecution and defence counsel adopted their written submissions before the court.

The judge then reserved judgement to be delivered today, December 5.

Mr Kalu is currently a senator representing Abia State.

More details later…

BREAKING: Pipeline Explodes In Alimosho, Several Feared Killed.

Several persons have been feared killed following a pipeline explosion at the Baruwa area of Alimosho Local Government area of Lagos State.

The incident is said to have occurred as a result of the activities of vandals engaged in illegal oil bunkering in the area.

Some witnesses say that at the other end of the fire are the bodies of some victims.

Channels Television reports that relevant agencies have been deployed to the scene, and operations are ongoing to douse the flames.

« Older Entries