POLICE PENSION SCAM: EFCC re-arrests Yusufu, pension boss
By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
ABUJA—Dissatisfied with the slap on the wrist sentence that was handed to the convicted former Director of Pension in the Police Affairs Ministry, John Yakhubu Yusufu, by an Abuja High Court on Monday, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, yesterday, disclosed that he has been re-arrested over alleged involvement in another N300 million fraud.
Consequently, lead prosecutor for the anti-graft agency, Mr Rotimi Jacobs, yesterday, entered a fresh four-count criminal charge against him before the Abuja Division of Federal High Court.
Besides, investigations by Vanguard also revealed that Yusufu will be docked before trial Justice Adamu Bello today.
The ex-Pension boss had confessed before the Abuja High Court that he connived with seven other civil servants and stole about N23billion from the Police Pension Fund.
Shortly after he pleaded guilty to a three-count criminal charge that was preferred against him by the EFCC, trial Justice Abubakar Thalba who relied on the provision of section 309 of the Penal Code, sentenced him to two years imprisonment with an option of N750, 000 fine, a sum the convict quickly paid amid cheers from his friends and family members.
Nevertheless, Vanguard gathered that his joy was short-lived, as operatives of the anti-graft commission swooped on him at his residence and whisked him back to the EFCC headquarters in Abuja where he was grilled and detained for subsequent prosecution today.
In the fresh charge against him a copy of which was secured by Vanguard, the accused person, on or about February 14, 2012, knowingly failed to make full disclosure of his assets and liability in the Declaration of Assets Form he filled and submitted, adding that he failed to declare that he owns a company known as AY-A Global Services Limited.
He was said to have used the name of the company and lodged in a fixed deposit account with a bank, the sum of N250 million, N10 million in a fixed deposit account with another bank, and another N29 million which he was said to have instructed one Danjuma Mele to lodge in his company account in the name of Jidag Technical Services Ltd with yet another bank.
According to the EFCC, the offence is punishable under section 27 (3) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Establishment e.t.c) Act Cap E1 2004.
Yusufu was hitherto facing trial alongside a Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Mr. Atiku Abubakar Kigo and six others, Esai Dangabar, Ahmed Inuwa Wada, Mrs. Veronica Ulonma Onyegbula, Sani Habila Zira and Christian Madubuike.
EFCC had alleged that the accused persons conspired and sequentially withdrew monies from Police Pension funds in an account domiciled at First Bank of Nigeria and shared it among themselves, adding that the 3rd accused person, Inuwa Wada, collected N18million from Unity Bank Plc, as his reward for retaining the Police Pension Account with the bank.
The commission maintained that the fraud was perpetuated between January 2009 and June 2011.