Alleged Diversion Of N80Bn: EFCC Charges Yahaya Bello


Few days after leaving office, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has charged the immediate past governor of Kogi State, Alhaji Yahaya Bello with corruption involving the alleged diversion of over N80 billion.

Bello left office on January 27, 2024 after serving two terms of four years each and handed over to Usman Ododo.

The EFCC did not to file a fresh case in court against Bello as it merely amended existing charges by adding Bello in the suit in which his nephew, Ali Bello, who is presently the Chief of Staff to Governor Ododo and an associate were accused of diverting funds belonging to Kogi State.

However, the State Commissioner for Information, Kingsley Fanwo, in a statement condemned the EFCC for charging Bello, adding that the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CR/550/2022 was already before Judge James Omotosho of the Federal High Court in Abuja.

The case until the amendment that added Bello as a co-defendant, had his nephew, Ali Bello, and his associate, Dauda Suleiman, as the defendants on record.

Bello in the amended case was accused of converting a total of N80.2 billion (N80,246,470,089.88) belonging to Kogi State Government to personal use.

An alleged co-conspirator, Abdulsalami Hud, who was the Cashier in Kogi State Government House, is believed to be at large while the two other co-defendants are Ali Bello and Dauda Suleiman

Speaking on the suit, Fanwo, who also served in the Bello-led administration of Kogi State, noted that the charge stated that the offence took place around September 2015 at a time former Governor Bello was yet to assume office.
The Information Commissioner further said that the charges also indicated that Bello was at large, saying; “this is ridiculous, laughable and portrays the EFCC as an agency infested with persons whose intents disagree with the noble intention of Mr. President to defeat corruption in Nigeria.

“Being ‘at large’ of course means that a person is evading arrest or is on the run and cannot be found after an attempt to arrest.

“In the EFCC’s desperation to nail H.E Yahaya Bello, they forgot their thinking hammer at home,” he said.


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