Nigerian military, police, others can’t find Tompolo – EFCC

Photo Credit: Vanguard Newspaper
Photo Credit: Vanguard Newspaper

‎The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Friday told a federal judge that the whereabouts of Government Ekpemupolo, a former militant leader, were unknown.

Festus Keyamo, counsel to the EFCC, said a combined team of Nigerian police and military officers had been combing the creeks for weeks without success.

The judge had issued a warrant for the arrest of Mr. Ekpemupolo (also known as Tompolo) on February 8 after he shunned repeated invitations to appear before the EFCC for questioning.

Last week, the commission declared the ex-militant wanted.

“We wish to inform the court that the warrant of arrest that this court issued in respect of the first defendant (Mr. Ekpemupolo) has not been ‎executed despite the best efforts of all the security agents in this country,” Mr. Keyamo told the judge on Friday.

“Every security agent in this country is involved in the search for the first defendant. What is unfolding is something that has never been seen before in this country for a very long time.”

Mr. Ekpemupolo and Patrick Akpobolokemi, the former Director‎ General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, are accused of a multibillion naira fraud at the agency.

Others charged alongside them are Global West Vessel Specialist Ltd, Odimiri Electrical Ltd, Kime Engozu, Boloboere Property and Estate Ltd, Rex Elem, Destre Consult Ltd, Gregory Mbonu, and Captain Warredi Enisuoh.

At the last court sitting, Tayo Oyetibo, who represented Mr. Ekpemupolo‎ prayed the court to set aside an order of substituted service which the judge had earlier granted against his client.

In a short ruling, Justice Ibrahim Buba dismissed the application and renewed a warrant order it had earlier issued on the former militant leader.

“Up till today the first defendant has refused to honour the invitation of the court to appear before it,” the judge had said.

“The whole essence of service is to make the person aware of charges facing him.‎ By bringing an application before the court, the first defendant had become aware of the charge before the court.”

On Friday, no lawyer announced appearance for Mr. Ekpemupolo, a situation the prosecution noted was disrespectful to the court.

“Having registered his appearance at the last sitting, the very senior counsel (Mr. Oyetibo) ought to have‎ come to withdraw his appearance,” Mr. Keyamo said.

With Mr. Ekpemupolo still at large, Mr. Keyamo moved a motion for an adjournment to enable the prosecution separate the charges “so we can go on with the other accused persons”.

The prosecution counsel also filed an application urging the court to order the seizure of all identified properties‎ belonging to Mr. Ekpemupolo.

The assets listed include property at No. 1 Chief Agbamu Close DDPA Extension Warri (Effurun), Delta State; all properties of Muhaabix Global Services Ltd; a River Crew Change Boat named MUHA – 15; the property known as “Tompolo Dockyard”, by the end of Enerhen Road, Effurun, Warri.

Others are a property known as “Tompolo Yard”, at the end of Chevron Clinic Road, next to Next Oil, Edjeba, Warri; the Diving School at Kurutie, at Escravos River; the property known as “Tompolo House” at Oporaza Town, opposite the Palace; and any other property discovered by the Economic And Financial Crimes Commission, moveable and immoveabl‎e, belonging to the first accused person.

“This application is to further secure the attendance of the first accused person. The law says that the court can order the confiscation of his properties until he appears,” Mr. Keyamo said.

“Any third party can bring an application later, but we have intelligence reports that those properties and companies belong to the first accused person.

“If he fails to appear within three months, the federal government will auction off all the assets.”

‎In his ruling, the judge granted the order for the seizure of all the listed properties and adjourned till March 22 for the separation of the charges on the defendants.


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  • Crime does not pay. Corruption is evil. Doers of evil can only escape justice for a moment

  • Olisa Maduka

    How can one man act like he is bigger than the entire nation, God will definitely judge and let all the proud in this country know that Nigeria is much bigger than any individual.

    • Cleartruth

      Arrest amaechi and other APC thieves before you talk of arresting tompolo and by so doing Nigerians will know that anti corruption war is not selective.

      • just kennie

        Anothe inefectual B, who are you to dictate who the FG arrest first.
        Wake u this is PMB not GEJ

      • Paul Young

        You will keep fixating on Amaechi while we keep making progress in our fight against corruption. Amaechi may be corrupt, yes. Why don’t you wait till it gets to his turn. But you must also remember that patience Jonathan and maybe GEJ himself also have questions to answer

      • uduakomiri

        Has anyone declared Ameachi wanted? Why are so many people after Amaechi? I don’t hold brief for him, but if people think Amaechi is corrupt, why are the same people silent about Odili or even Wike who since he became governor of Rivers State he just doesn’t know what to do with running the state other than going on fruitless shadow boxing.
        Since Tompolo rather than Amaechi is the one that has been declared wanted, I think you should leave your hateful dislike of Amaechi aside and face the bitter truth that Tompolo or whatever he is called is going down. That coward who claims to be a general and warlord is now on the run. Lesson in this whole thing is: anyone with a gun can claim to be a warrior but when a real gunfight starts, the real warrior is the last man standing. Tompolo is a retarded coward. Without all those rusty creek guns, one small boy go jus chop the moi moi Tompolo like puff puff

        • Cleartruth

          Point of correction . I don’t hate amaechi. I hate corruption and corrupt people pontificating like saints. So many petitions have been written to efcc against amaechi, but he hasn’t been invited for interrogation. Nigerians want a wholistic anti corruption war where nobody will be spared because of party affiliation . When that is done nobody will have the ground to cry witch hunting and nobody will run to apc for cover. An anti corruption war where there would be no hiding place for corrupt people.

          As for tompolo, he is not a coward. He has been in the creeks before he came out for amnesty. FG said that all security agencies have searched for him in the creeks for weeks without seeing him. That will show you who he is. Tompolo would lose all his support if anti corruption war becomes wholistic not selective.

  • FreeNigeria

    Tompolo is a common criminal and will remain such with his creeks buffoons. The fish will surface to breathe and the police can net him

  • zung

    He should dare the country by appearing in the public to see whether he’ll be arrested or not.

  • Sir Demo

    Tompolo will be living a fugitive hence forth but will be caught one for sure. Time is not his friend, he is now a fair game for any security agent.

  • javscong javscong

    EFCC and the security agencies are not serious about catching this criminal. The man is wanted for conspiring with Akpobolokemi and defrauding the nation of billions of naira and dollars and these “jokers” think they will find him? Put a $5,000,000.00 bounty on his head and I bet he will be “fished” out in 48 hours. I am sure that there are agents inside these organisations, EFCC etc, who know where he is and must be saying to themselves: “which one concern me” or the man is paying them “protection” money. Please let us get serious or this matter will drag for another one year.

    • Paul Young

      You are right. Its high time we started placing bounty on wanted criminals. After all a recently sacked LG chairman in Delta state who was declared wanted has a 5 million naira bounty on him

  • Arogbo

    Oh boy, egbe don gas if Tompolo no show up between now and next week. Na real yawa be this for Tompolo. People don alienate and insulted everybody wey for help beg Baba Buhari. Before, Ijaw and Itsekiri people are like siamese twins weting come happen. Why we go dey fight each other. Money don blind a lot of people eye, dem not fit see beyond their nose.

  • Right Minded

    Buhari is just playing with fire. Touching Tompolo will only bring this govt down faster than we all expected. We are watching..

    • e_orpheus

      Forward oriented as your disqus handle may be, your comment is on the contrary backward minded.
      Justice and the law will not find him guilty of a crime he has not committed. If he was so confident of his innocence the rational thing to do was to turn up and defend it. Now he has graduated from a person of interest to a man on the run and soon an international fugitive, if it turns out he has fled nigeria. His known assets will be seized and the law will continue to strangle him until he gives up, alive or dead. All it takes is the commitment of our security agencies.
      El Chapo was snuffed out, Tompolo will be too.

      • Right Minded

        What happened to Kanu who turned up…he is yet to be released after several court orders granting him bail. Once beaten, twice shy bra!

        • e_orpheus

          Which takes us back to the question, has Tompolo committed the transgressions he is being accused of?
          Kanu was indeed released on bail and subsequently rearrested on separate charges. He was subsequently arraigned and himself applied for a change of the trial judge, which caused additional delays. Again the question, has Kanu committed the transgressions he is being accused of?
          For so long in Nigeria, all sorts of characters have been engaging in all sorts of activities and all who should have arrested these have been looking the other way. Game’s up now.

    • Comfortkay

      Just keep your mouth shut.

      • Right Minded

        Ashawo….don’t say I didn’t warn your papa ‘cos this may consume you and your ashawo business too

    • Paul Young

      My brother absolutely nothing will happen. People are wiser now. Tompolo made arguably billions of dollars under GEJ’s government. He is alleged to have sold land for Nigeria maritime university for 13 billion and gave the community less than one billion pocketing the rest. As we say in Warri. Who you help??? And the answer in tompolo’s case unfortunately is not a lot of people. Almost nobody will fight any sustained fight for him

      • Original_Raskal

        but when tompolo lost all his assets he would return to same means he used in getting them earlier! buhari is a mor0n! maybe it is cheaper to use soldiers to guide all oil wells and pipelines in the creeks!

    • tony10

      Asari said more than that last year. FFK said more than that over Dasuki. Metuh bluffed more than that and now he has gone dead silent when he was shown what the law means. Tompolo is nada. Jonathan and Yardua gave him false sense of importance. Why has he not come out with his ‘boys’ to confront the JTF? The problem with you guys is you think you have a monopoly of violence and because you were placated with amnesty, you dictate the terms.

      • Right Minded

        Siddon dey look… Let Buhari pull the first string

  • clairvoyance

    Tompolo is hiding in one of the 3 places listed below. I made this comment on vagabond newspaper some 3weeks ago now I am doing same here.
    1. Edwin kiagbodo Clark’s house should be searched.
    2. The king of gbaramatu’s palace
    3. Government house Asaba and anex Warri.
    Any of these three places mentioned Tompolo would be captured there. Security forces take note.

    • Paul Young

      Agreed 100%. I suspect Unity house asaba


      I personally do not think Tompolo is anywhere near Nigeria !!

  • emmanuel

    Keyamo and Buhari will eventually export Crude from Federal High Court in Ikoyi at this rate. Deep silence from mean men are dangerous.
    The Yorubas and Fulanis who when it does not benefit them;wants it destroyed are waiting in the flanks to see Tompolo eliminated.
    They never clamoured for Femi Otedola and Rahamaniya who got huge patronage and favours during Obasanjo and Yar Adua to be humiliated.
    TY Danjuma did not pay signature bonus from the Oil block he got from where he reaped over $2 Billion upfront earnings, FAMFA and K Laval same thing, yet Etete was the only Nigerian who got Oil Block and must be stripped of it.

  • Amir

    Tompolo has telephone numbers registered in his name. It’s easy to trace his location through signals even if switched on for 10 mins. They should search government house Asaba or Jonathan’s house in Otuoke. On the other hand Kayemo is a two faced lawyer. A real enemy within EFCC. He has Tompolo’s tel. number. Tompolo’s lawyers have been meeting and receiving briefs so they know where he is.

    • Dazmillion

      You are right, Keyamo is a double agent. I dont know why the EFCC is still retaining his services when he has not won a single corruption case for them. Dont be surprised if Keyamo loses this simple case of theft.

  • True Nigerian

    Tompolo’s comeuppance is here, and he seems to be handling it with levity, nonchalance and the same arrogance that brought him to this ugly situation. If he is wise, he should be focusing on damage limitation. But most criminals won’t be criminals if their thinking skills were so good.

    Tompolo wants us to believe that he is the same Tompolo who fought in the creeks like a dog. But any smart person would know that the Tompolo of today is not the same as the one who was a common criminal in the creeks. The new Tompolo don chop money, he has amassed billions of Naira, untold wealth and incredible life of luxury. He has now seen the best things of life and flies in private jets. When someone experiences that kind of life, he can hardly endure the kind of rough life that Tompolo is about to give himself by engaging in a battle with the state.

    So does he want to become another Shekau? I wish him goodluck. All the goodluck wishes did not help Bin Laden in the end, neither did it help Pablo Escobar or the Mexican Shorty (De Guzman). Rarely does an individual become more powerful than the state. In the instances where individuals have seemed more powerful than the state, it is often because the person steering the state were either in cahoot with the criminal or were simply shirking responsibility. That was why the Tomopolos of this world had the impudence they had in Nigeria in the last 6 years. Jonathan gave them a free ride to impunity. Tompolo must now understand that things have changed. The State has got its mojo back again under a very nationalistic Army General who does not know trepidation or cowardice, and will therefore naturally consider any intimidation a battle that is to too tempting to be avoided or ignored. Buhari will consider this challenge an exciting one and will grab it with both hands. He will thoroughly enjoy it.

    Buhari’s new army chiefs killed nearly 700 Shites who did not fire a gun a shot at the army. I wonder what they will do in response to any armed militant who challenges them in a war game.

    The Itsekiris will tell Buhari Tompolo’s whereabouts if they knew it. The poor Ijaw community who were shortchanged as Tompolo usurped their lands to enrich himself at their expense are also not going to be fighting on the same side with Tompolo.

    Those who think Tompolo is about to distablise Nigeria are f00ls. And I say that as an Igbo man. Two years ago, I warned Nnamdi Kalu’s empty-headed fanatical supporters. They called me “Sabo” for telling them the truth that true liberators do not operate the way Nnamdi was operating. Today, between me and them, who is right?

    Tompolo will only count his losses; that is if he lives to count them.

    • Iniabasi Akpan

      Ur opinion..

    • uduakomiri

      Well spoken!