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03 December 2019

Court orders forfeiture of Saraki’s houses

A Federal High Court in Lagos Monday ordered the forfeiture of two houses belonging to former Senate President, Bukola Saraki.

The houses are located at plots 10 and 11 Abdulkadir Road, Government Reservation Area (GRA), Ilorin, Kwara State.

Justice Rilwan Aikawa gave the order following an application filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

The development comes five days after the former Senate president raised the alarm that the anti-graft agency was “targetting his properties,” and ignoring a court order restricting it from ahead with the plan.

Saraki is being investigated by the EFCC for alleged corruption and other allied crimes during his stint as governor of Kwara from 2003 to 2011.

The Commission told the court it uncovered monumental fraud in the Kwara treasury when Saraki was governor of the state.

In an affidavit filed in support of an ex parte application, an operative of the EFCC, Olamide Sadiq, said the move for the forfeiture of the houses followed the findings of the anti-graft agency after its investigation.

He said: “Whilst the investigation was ongoing several fraudulent transactions were discovered. I know for a fact and verily believe that our investigation has revealed the following mind-boggling findings, among others:

“That between 2003 and 2011, Dr. Olubukola Abubakar Saraki was the Executive Governor of Kwara State. That whilst he held the aforementioned position, the common pattern was that after payment of monthly allocation by the Federal Government to the Kwara State Government, a cumulative sum of not less than N100m will be deposited into the Kwara Government House account.

“That upon the payment of the said N100m, the same will, in turn, be withdrawn in cash by one Mr. Afeez Yusuf from the Kwara State Government House, Ilorin’s account in bits and brought to the Government House.”

The EFCC said it believed that Saraki acquired the two properties with proceeds of fraud.

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