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Court jails 5 REA directors over N5.2bn fraud

An FCT High Court has sentenced former directors of the Rural Electricity Agency (REA) to various jail terms for their role in the N5.2 billion scam.

Justice Adebukola Banjoko on Friday sentenced Engr. Samuel Ibi Gekpe, former Managing Director, REA; Simon Kirdi Nanle, an accountant in REA; Engr. Kayode Orekoya, Director of Projects; Abdusamad Garba Hahun, Assistant Director; and Kayode Oyedeji, Head of Legal Department.

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The judge found that the prosecution had established by evidence all ingredients of the offences against the defendants.

The defendants were accordingly convicted and sentenced with Gekpe handed a three years imprisonment with an option of N5million fine, while Orekoya, Hahun and Oyedeji were sentenced to three years imprisonment with an option of N500,000 fine each.

However, a former Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Power, Dr Abdullahi Aliyu, who is the second defendant, was discharged and acquitted.

The defendants were alleged to have fraudulently facilitated the withdrawal of the sum of N119.7million from the account of the agency, domiciled in Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) charge them for criminal breach of trust in fraudulently awarding contract for Grid Extension and Solar Electricity from the amended 2008 Budget of REA.

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