BREAKING: Northern Group Faults Agunloye’s Alleged $6bn Mambilla Contract Scam - 247Updates
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BREAKING: Northern Group Faults Agunloye’s Alleged $6bn Mambilla Contract Scam

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The Northern Nigerian Women (NNW) group has condemned the arrest and arraignment of a former Minister of Power and Steel, Dr. Olu Agunloye over an alleged $6bn fraud in connection to the Mambilla Hydroelectric Power Station.…CONTINUE READING

The Social rights and justice advocacy group in a statement signed by its Coordinator, Awakulu Galadimawa and made available to newsmen Tuesday in Abuja, described the linking of Agunloye to Mambilla project fraud as a “mischief and misjudged adventure”, while urging the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to “do a thorough investigation and stop all media trial”.

The group while absorbing Agunloye of any wrongdoing in the mambilla power project fraud case, urged the trial judge to discharge his duty with utmost professionalism, devoid of influence of media trial.

Recall that Nobel laureate Prof Wole Soyinka had described as total contempt of sense and justice the predicament of a former Minister of Power and Steel. He was one of the numerous prominent Nigerians who had criticized the predicament of Agunloye.

Part of the statement reads: “It is on record that, as a Minister the said project, Mambilla Hydroelectric power project was operated under Build Operate and Transfer, where-in the company Sunrise Power and Transmission Company Ltd that bided for it will source the said fund and operate it for period of 35 years to recoup the investment done and then hand over the project back to the Federal Government. This was done at no cost to the Federal Government, but supervised with good conscience by the Minister.

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“We are unaware of the Federal Government remitting a kobo to the said company, and this makes us wonder why dragging now even when we can’t say there was regular procurement procedure under him as Minister. Is there any further evidence that contravenes the procedure of the said Operate and Transfer, a policy that the then Federal Government embraced to save the country of funds appropriation for major projects?

“The sudden wake up by EFCC and robbing of Olu Agunloye no doubt calls for concern, as a section see it a witch hunting and thus we patiently await the court procedures and ruling of the court on the said allegation that to us doesn’t hold waters.

“We also implore the sitting judge in the matter, Hon. Justice Jude Onwuegbuzie to discharge independent ruling devoid of influence or the ongoing media frenzy trial the matter has attracted over time. We wish to let anti-graft agencies know that the trial should be allowed free and fair and need to stop the ongoing media trial as seen in several flyers and publications made by EFCC ever since the commencement of this case.

“Nigerians await the truth of this matter and those rightly seen as being involved in shady deals should be brought to book while the innocent be set free,” the statement read.

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Agunloye served as minister between 1999 and 2003 under the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission arraigned Agunloye before Justice J.O. Onwuegbuzie in January 2024, where he pleaded not guilty to the charges read to him.

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