A cousin to the immediate past governor of Akwa Ibom State and current Senate minority leader, Senator Godswill Akpabio, Ibanga Ime Akpabio, has been arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), for his involvement in a N10 million oil scam.
Akpabio, according to a statement made available to the Nigerian Tribune by the EFCC’s Head, Media and Publicity, Wilson Uwujaren, on Wednesday, was arrested by operatives of the anti-corruption commission on Tuesday, in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.
Akpabio’s arrest, the statement said, was occasioned by an allegation that he collected a sum of N10 million from a potential investor in petroleum products.
Specifically, Ibanga Akpabio reportedly approached the investor to invest the money as an equity in the purchase of petroleum product directly from a floating station belonging to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
He was said to have allegedly assured the investor that he had secured all necessary approvals for the running of the business.
Akpabio allegedly collected the money through a bank account being operated by Fastej Enterprises and neither kept faith with the business arrangements with the investor nor returned his money to him.
The statement added that the former governor’s cousin was currently undergoing interrogation in the Port Harcourt zonal office of the anti-graft commission.
In a related development, the EFCC has stated that the claims in a purported tape on an online medium, SaharaReporters, with the caption, EFCC detains brother of former Akwa Ibom State governor, Ibanga Akpabio, especially, as it affects the commission’s acting chairman, Mr Ibrahim Magu, are patently false.
A statement by Uwujaren, stated that: “The attention of EFCC has been drawn to a recorded audio conversation attached to a report with the caption, EFCC Detains brother of former Akwa Ibom State governor, Ibanga Akpabio, which appeared today (Wednesday), November 2, on the online news portal, Sahara reporters, allegedly featuring two Akwa Ibom politicians, Ibanga Akpabio and a certain Osong.
“In the said audio recording, a voice purporting to be Akpabio could be heard dropping the names of some security chiefs, including the acting chairman of the commission, Ibrahim Magu and boasting about the supposed EFCC boss’ willingness to help deal with his purported political adversaries in Akwa Ibom State,
“The commission wishes to state that the claims in this tape, especially, as it affects Magu are patently false. The EFCC boss has never met Ibanga Akpabio ,all his life and could not have been party to any violent scheme to settle unknown political scores in Akwa Ibom State.
The statement, therefore, enjoined members of the public to disregard the recorded conversation as plain braggadocio.