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EFCC: Ex-Power Minister Faces N33bn Scandal

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EFCC: Ex-Power Minister Faces N33bn Scandal

(iexclusivenews) – In a startling turn of events, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is set to arraign former Minister of Power, Saleh Mamman, on charges of money laundering amounting to a staggering N33 billion.

This high-profile case has sent shockwaves through Nigeria’s political landscape, raising questions about corruption in the power sector and the effectiveness of government oversight.

The Fall from Grace: Mamman’s Journey from Minister to Defendant

Saleh Mamman, who served as Minister of Power under former President Muhammadu Buhari from 2019 to 2021, is now at the center of a legal storm. His tenure, which ended abruptly with his dismissal in September 2021, has come under intense scrutiny by anti-corruption agencies.

Key Points:

  • Appointed as Minister of Power in 2019

  • Dismissed from office in September 2021

  • Arrested by EFCC operatives in May 2023

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The Charges: Unraveling a Web of Financial Misconduct

The EFCC has leveled 12 counts of money laundering offenses against Mamman, painting a picture of widespread financial impropriety during his tenure as minister.

Allegations Include:

  1. Conspiracy to indirectly convert N33.8 billion from government funds

  2. Misappropriation of funds allocated for the Mambilla and Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Plant Projects

  3. Illegal cash transactions involving foreign currency

The charges against Mamman carry severe legal consequences, highlighting the gravity of the alleged offenses.

Legal Framework:

  • Violations of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended)

  • Potential punishments under Section 15(3) of the Act

The Wider Impact: Corruption in Nigeria’s Power Sector

This case sheds light on the ongoing challenges facing Nigeria’s power sector, raising concerns about the mismanagement of public funds and its impact on the country’s energy infrastructure.

 Implications for the Power Sector:

  • Questions about the progress of key power projects

  • Potential setbacks in addressing Nigeria’s electricity challenges

  • Need for increased transparency and accountability in government contracts

What’s Next: The Legal Process Unfolds

As the case progresses, all eyes will be on the Federal High Court in Abuja, where Justice James Omotoso will preside over this high-stakes trial.

Upcoming Proceedings:

  • Arraignment scheduled for Thursday, July 11, 2024

  • Potential for further revelations as the case progresses

  • Implications for other officials and private companies involved

A Test for Nigeria’s Anti-Corruption Efforts

The prosecution of Saleh Mamman represents a significant test for Nigeria’s anti-corruption agencies and the country’s commitment to combating financial crimes at the highest levels of government.

As the case unfolds, it will undoubtedly have far-reaching implications for political accountability and the future of Nigeria’s power sector.

This high-profile case serves as a reminder of Nigeria’s ongoing challenges in its fight against corruption and the critical importance of transparency in public office.

The outcome of this trial could set a precedent for future cases and potentially reshape the landscape of political accountability in Nigeria.

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