BY ONYEKA AJUMOBI ONOCHIE
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has secured the final forfeiture of N827, 679,098.32 (Eight Hundred and Twenty-Seven Million, Six Hundred and Seventy-Nine Thousand, Ninety-Eight Naira, Thirty-Two Kobo) from Flank Power Resources Limited and GMFD Ventures Limited, both of which are firms linked to contractors with the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC. Matthew Edevbie is the Chief Executive Officer of Flank Power Resources Limited.
The forfeiture followed the order of Justice Chukwujekwu Aneke of the Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos, sequel to an affidavit deposed to by an EFCC investigator, in which the Commission prayed the court for the forfeiture of the sum to the federal Government of Nigeria, being proceeds of unlawful activity, traced to some contractors’ accounts with Zenith Bank.
A breakdown of the recovery shows that N616, 679, 098.32 (Six Hundred and Sixteen Million, Six Hundred and Seventy-Nine Thousand, Ninety-Eight Naira, Thirty-Two Kobo) was recovered from Flank Power Resources Limited, while N211million (Two Hundred and Eleven Million Naira) was recovered from GMFD Ventures Limited.
It was discovered that between 2018 and 2019, Flank Power Resources Limited received the funds from the NDDC, through its account number:1015642852 , while GMFD received through account number: 1014657819 both of which are domiciled in Zenith Bank Plc for desilting contracts which aside being inflated, were not executed, but diverted and laundered.
The sum of N616, 679, 098.32 recovered from Flank Power Resources Limited was facilitated through 62 Zenith Bank drafts in favour of the EFCC Recovered Funds Account with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, while the N211million from GMFD came through 22 Zenith Bank drafts in favour of the same account.
The EFCC secured the interim forfeiture of the money on June 8, 2020 and its final forfeiture was granted by the court on June 29, 2020.