Mubarak Isa, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) witness, has told a Federal High Court (FHC), Abuja that Mrs Winifred Oyo-Ita, immediate-past Head of Service (HoS), did not disclose some property she owned in her asset declaration form.
Isa, an Assistant Superintendent of EFCC, told Justice James Omotosho on Friday while testifying as the 7th prosecution witness (PW7) in the on-going fraud allegation preferred against Oyo-Ita and others.
The PW7 told the court that he made the discovery when he joined a team of other EFCC investigators, comprising of Hamma Bello and Rukkayat Ibrahim, to investigate the ex-HoS.
According to the witness, sometime in 2019, Oyo-Ita filled a declaration of assets form which was witnessed by Mr Tahir Mamman at the EFCC office.
”In the course of investigation, we found that personal accounts in First City Monument Bank, Guaranty Trust Bank, ECOBANK; Frontline Ace Global Ltd and Asanaya Projects Ltd accounts in Zenith and Fidelity Banks, all linked to Oyo-Ita were not disclosed in the form.
“Analysis into these accounts showed payment from Asanaya Projects to Multipurpose Infrastructural Development Company.
“This necessitated an interview with the Managing Director, Mr Emmanuel Obiri, and he disclosed that he met with Oyo-Ita, who showed interest in owning property in Lagos as a fallback after her retirement.
“A total payment of N65 million was paid by other companies for two numbers of four bedroom terrace and two numbers of shops all in Lagos for the sum of N94 million.
“These properties were also not disclosed in the asset declaration form,’’ the witness told the court.
When asked under cross examination if he was aware Oyo-Ita was neither a director nor a shareholder in the two companies he mentioned, the witness told the court that he did not know.
EFCC’s counsel, Halidu Mohammed, sought to tender the declaration form as evidence in the case which was not opposed by the defence lawyers and Justice Omotosho admitted it as an exhibit.
Earlier, Mr Marvis Enabulele, a staff of Fidelity Bank and the 6th prosecution witness (PW6), told the court that the bank never reported any illegal activity on the account Oyo-Ita operated with them.
Enabulele, who tendered the statement of account of Oyo-Ita as well as that of Prince Mega Logistics Ltd in evidence, said that the proper procedure was followed in opening the accounts.
The witness further told the court that he generated the documents by downloading the account statement from the bank’s system and then prepared a certificate of identification.
The judge admitted all the documents tendered in evidence and adjourned the matter until Jan. 23 and 26 for continuation of hearing.
The News Agency of Nigeria, (NAN) reports that Oyo-Ita and her co-defendants were, on Jan. 18, 2023, arraigned by the anti-graft agency on an 18-count charge of N3 billion graft.
She was arraigned alongside her Special Assistant, Ubong Effiok; Frontline Ace Global Services Limited; Asanaya Projects Ltd; Garba Umar and his companies, Slopes International Ltd and Gooddeal Investments Ltd.
Other defendants include U & U Global Services Ltd, belonging to Mr Effiok, and Prince Mega Logistics Ltd.
They were all arraigned for alleged fraud in relation to duty tour allowance (DTA), estacodes, conference fees and receiving kickbacks on contracts.
The defendants all pleaded not guilty to the charge.
NAN reports that Oyo-Ita and her co-defendants were earlier being tried before Justice Taiwo Taiwo of a sister court before he retired in July 2022.
They were arranged before Justice Taiwo on March 23, 2020 on same count charge.