By Henry Umoru
SENATOR Peter Nwaoboshi, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Delta North yesterday said that he is not the owner of 11 houses and 12 out of the 22 bank accounts frozen by the Federal High Court in Abuja.
Nwaoboshi said, “My attention has been drawn to a purported forfeiture order. Although I am yet to be served with the proceedings of the court. I only read in in the print media. I don’t have 22 bank accounts. That is not to say that there is any law that forbids me to own up that number of bank accounts or more than that in Nigeria.
“Most of the alleged bank accounts belong to companies of which they thought I have interest in but I am not a signatory, a director, or a shareholder in any of the companies. It is therefore wicked, malicious, frivolous, scandalous, and a height of irresponsibility. It, therefore portray the level of the understanding of the law by the leadership of the SPIB.
” I challenge the SPIB to publish the names of the shareholders, directors, and signatories to the accounts for the public to judge. For instance, one of the companies they mentioned, Suiming Electrical Company. The ownership of the company has been settled, in a case determined in 2017 by Hon Justice Okon Abang where he pronounced the ownership of Suiming Electrical Nigeria Limited and the Guinea House on Marine Road, Apapa in Lagos State which was also linked to me.
” All the companies mentioned are registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission. I wonder why the SPIB failed to carry out due diligence before rushing to the court to tarnish my image by securing a forfeiture order on firms that I have nothing to do with. I went to Court on June 10th this year and obtained an injunction ordering SPIB to maintain the statusquo ante on my case as of May 31, 2019. I wonder why a party to the suit should go ahead to secure this forfeiture order when the injunction had not be lifted.
“12 of the bank accounts belongs to companies while most of the other 12 accounts were opened for me by the various banks representatives operating in the National Assembly when I became a senator, are already dormant . Some of the banks officials even used their own money to open those accounts. Some of them I don’t know. Some of the banks are even lobbying us with loans now and they would even tell you that they have credited your accounts. All you just do is to sign the papers. They will just open the accounts on their own and come and give you the documents.
“We will file the necessary papers at the courts. We shall take all the legal actions because we have already appealed the case.
“Let me assure Nigerians that as soon as the case is settled, I shall bring a motion to investigate the $322m of the 774 local governments in Nigeria allegedly taken by consultants from the Paris Club refund. It must be investigated by Nigerians. Nothing will stop it.”
It would be recalled that the Court, presided over by Justice Taiwo Taiwo made the forfeiture order on July 2 but a certified true copy of the order was only issued on July 5 (Friday).
The judge had issued the order following an ex parte application by the Special Presidential Investigative Panel for the Recovery of Public Property.
The ex parte application was moved by the panel’s lawyer, Celsus Ukpong, who described the assets as suspicious or suspected to be far beyond the legitimate income of Nwaoboshi.
The Federal High Court in Abuja has ordered the interim forfeiture of 11 houses and 22 bank accounts linked to Delta-North Senator, Peter Nwaoboshi.