Alleged N2.2bn diversion: Trial of S/Court chief registrar, accountant begins today

THE trial of the Chief Registrar of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, Ahmed Gambo Saleh and two other senior officials of the apex court will commence today at the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) sitting in Jabi, Abuja.

Others arraigned with the Chief Registrar are Muhammed Abdulrahman Sharif, the Director of Finance and the Chief Accountant of the apex court, Rilwanu Lawal.

They are standing a joint trial on a nine-count criminal charge for allegedly diverting N2.2 billion belonging to the Supreme Court.

The three defendants would appear before Justice Abba Mohammed sitting at Court No. 28, FCT High Court, Jabi, Abuja.

The accused persons were alleged to have agreed to divert N2.2 billion belonging to the Supreme Court into a personal bank account domiciled at the United Bank for Africa Plc, account No. 2027642863 and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 96 of the Penal Code Act.

The prosecutor alleged that the accused persons committed criminal breach of trust between 2009 and 2016, when they were entrusted with the property of the apex court.

It was alleged that the accused persons obtained gratifications totalling N80 million, contrary to Section 10 of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) Act.

It was also alleged that N2.4 million gratification was obtained from Welcon Nigeria Ltd, N16 million from Dean Musa Nig. Ltd, N19 million from Ababia Ventures Ltd, all being private contractors who provided services to the apex court.