An Abuja High Court has admitted the testimony of a banker, Uchenna Agagara, in evidence against a former Governor of Kogi State, Abubakar Audu, in his ongoing corruption trial.
Mr. Audu is being prosecuted by the anti-graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC, for offences bordering on criminal breach of trust and misappropriation of public funds to the tune of N10.96 billion.
On Friday, the EFCC’s witness, Mr. Agagara, told the court, presided over by Adegbola Adeniyi, that “several millions of naira totalling about 926 million” was lodged into the Diamond Bank account of Bulkom Nigeria limited, “between May 29, 2001 and July 23,2003” when Mr. Audu was the Governor of Kogi State.
The prosecuting counsel tendered a statement of account from Diamond Bank, showing the details of the transactions. The statement was admitted in evidence by the judge, Mr. Adegbola, and marked exhibit P1 54 a-b.
But Mr. Audu vacated office on May 29, 2003.
Mr. Agagara, a relationship officer with Diamond Bank Plc, who is also the account officer of Bulkom Nig Ltd identified the exhibit and further told the court that he printed the said statement from the banks’ system when he was invited by the EFCC.
It was also alleged that the ex-Kogi State Governor was stealing money from the First bank account of Directorate of Rural Development of Kogi State and was lodging it into the Diamond bank Plc account of Bulkom Nigeria Ltd, a company alleged to have handled most of building projects during his tenure.
The case has been adjourned to March 31 and April 1 and 2, 2015 for continuation of hearing.
Mr. Audu is being prosecuted alongside a former Director General of the Directorate of Rural Development in his administration, Alfa Ibn Mustapha.
He is a leader of the opposition All Progressives Congress in Kogi State and is bidding to return as the Governor of the State in its next governorship elections.
On Wednesday, Mr. Audu ordered his security aide (a police officer) to assault an operative of the EFCC during an appearance in court.
Mr. Audu attacked the staff for daring to take his photograph in court, the EFCC said.