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Saturday, 23 December 2017

Alleged N748m property: David Mark presents health excuse certificate to EFCC

Alleged N748m property: David Mark presents health excuse certificate to EFCC

Immediate past President of the Senate, Chief David Mark

Following the ongoing probe of the purchase of a N748million property, a former President of the Senate, Chief David Mark, has presented the health excuse certificate to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

He also said his health was not stable enough to enable him write a statement on issues connected with the purchase of the official residence of Senate President.

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He asked the anti-graft agency to allow him to attend to his health and return on or before January 11 for interrogation on the said property.

But he told the EFCC detectives that he bought the quarters with a loan and promised to present relevant documents next year.

These claims are contained in a fact-sheet by the EFCC on the investigation of the ex-Senate President.

According to the document, Mark has three cases before the EFCC which are being handled by separate teams of detectives.

The other cases are N550m arms procurement cash from ONSA and N2.9billion curious payment into the account of the National Assembly’s account and shared to Senators during Mark’s tenure; and his role in about N2billion campaign funds meant for Benue State.

The document said Mark was expected to respond to the following issues:

The property was unlawfully acquired in 2011.

Didn’t the buying of the house amount to an abuse of office?

Whether or not the purchase of the property was not a violation of Part 11 (b) of the Certain Political, Public and Judicial Office Holders (Salaries and Allowances, Etc.) (Amendment) Act, 2008 otherwise known as the Remuneration Act, 2008

Did the process of acquisition of the house comply with Section 15 (1) of the Procurement Act, 2007;

Was the sale of the house gazetted by the Federal Government?

A top source, privy to the investigation, said: “When Mark met with our team of detectives on the N748million, he only presented a health excuse certificate.

“Later he said he could not write any statement to respond to issues isolated for him because he said he was unstable. We accorded him enough respect befitting of his status.

“He told our team verbally that he bought the house with a loan and pleaded with the EFCC to allow him to return on or before January 11, 2018 to come for grilling on the property.

“Having asked him to deposit his passports, we are expecting him to come for interrogation in January.”

Meanwhile, the EFCC yesterday confirmed the arrest one Mohammed Momoh, a farmer, for attempting to defraud the governor of Nasarawa State, Alhaji Tanko Al- Makura.

A statement by the Head of Media and Publicity of EFCC, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren said the suspect had posed as a private investigator and demanded N8million bribe to stop the alleged probe of Al-Makura.

The statement said: “The suspect while posing as a ‘private investigator from the Villa’ had approached the wife of the governor with a proposition to help stop a purported investigation of two accounts belonging to the governor, by the EFCC.

“He claimed he came across information regarding the two accounts that had been under investigation since 2011 and also intercepted mails and gotten wind of the investigation report purportedly sent to First Bank by the EFCC.

“The suspect had requested for N8 million, but was offered N6 million. Suspicious about the proposal, the governor’s family contacted the commission and were asked to play along with the suspect.

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The suspect was arrested in a sting operation after he collected marked N2million.

“The suspect is currently in custody and would be charged to court as soon as investigation is concluded.

“In a related development, a serving police officer, Mohammed Nuhu Maina, has been arrested for impersonation.

“The suspect who claimed to be Assistant Superintendent of Police, ASP, attached to the commission, had approached his victim with offer to help him recover his money, N21m; which is subject of investigation by the EFCC.

“Maina allegedly collected several sums of money from his victim before he became suspicious.

“The suspect called the victim on December 21, 2017 and demanded for more money.

“The victim immediately contacted the EFCC and he was accompanied by operatives of the commission who tracked Maina and arrested him opposite Rockview Hotel, close to the EFCC head office in Wuse 2, Abuja.

“In the course of arrest, Maina was found with EFCC Vehicle Auction Certificates, EFCC stickers, EFCC writing pads, amongst others.

“Maina is currently in custody, assisting the investigation.

“The EFCC has consistently warned members of the public to be wary of impostors who go about extorting unsuspecting members of the public. The commission again implores the public to report any solicitation for gratification either by genuine or fake EFCC operatives to the nearest office of the commission or police station.”

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