$9.5m FIFA grant: Motion to amend charge stalls trial of 3 NFF officers

The trial of three officials of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) accused of misappropriating $9.5 million FIFA grant was yesterday stalled before an FCT High Court in Maitama.

The trial was stalled following the application by the prosecutor, Steve Odiase for the leave of the court to amend the charge and file additional proof of evidence.

Responding, counsel to the defendants, Festus Ukpe told the court that he was only served the motion Monday evening and would need time to study it and respond approximately.

The trial judge, Justice Peter Affen thereafter adjourned the matter to April 30, for hearing of the motion on amendment by the prosecution.

Daily Trust reports that the trio of Christopher Andekin, who is the NFF Director of Administration and Finance; Reagan Zaka, a cashier and Fadanari Mamza, Head, Finance and Account Department, were arraigned on Oct. 18, 2018 by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on a five-count charge bordering on criminal conspiracy, breach of trust and misappropriation.

They were said to have conspired between Jan. 8 and Jan. 26, 2015 to commit the offences, contrary to Section 97 of Penal Code.

Andekin was said to have been entrusted with money meant for the development of football in Nigeria, a grant from the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA).

He however allegedly diverted $1.3 million from the NFF domiciliary account with Zenith Bank, an act that is contrary to section 311 of the Penal Code.

Zaka on his part allegedly diverted $7. 2 million grant from FIFA for development of football in Nigeria while Mamza allegedly diverted $2. 3 million.

They all pleaded not guilty to the charge and were granted bail.

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