Kalu got N22.3m salary in eight years as gov —AG - Welcome to Uju Ayalogu's Blog

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Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Kalu got N22.3m salary in eight years as gov —AG

Kalu got N22.3m salary in eight years as gov —AG

Orji Uzor Kalu

The Accountant General of Abia State, Mr. Gabriel Onyedilefu, told the Federal High Court in Lagos on Tuesday that Chief Orji Kalu, who was governor in the state between 1999 and 2007, received a total of “N22,312,272 only” as salaries for eight years.

Onyedilefu tendered before the court a schedule detailing the salaries received by Kalu while he was governor.

The Accountant General was testifying for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, which is prosecuting Kalu for an alleged fraud of N2.9bn.

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Kalu is being prosecuted alongside his company, Slok Nigeria Limited; and a former Director of Finance and Account at the Abia State Government House, Mr. Ude Udeogu.

At the Tuesday’s proceedings, the trial judge, Justice Mohammed Idris, in a short ruling, dismissed the objection of Kalu’s lawyer, Prof. Awa Kalu (SAN), to the tendering of the schedule detailing the salaries received by Kalu while he was governor.

The judge, in the same ruling, equally dismissed the defence counsel’s objection to the admissibility of a publication, titled, “Financial Regulations of Abia State.”

Speaking on the Financial Regulations of Abia State, under examination-in-chief by the prosecutor, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), Onyedilefu said he was not aware of any provision in the document that empowered the cashier of the government house “to use funds meant for an agency of the government to buy bank drafts for a company which has nothing to do with the Abia State Government.”

One of the earlier prosecution witnesses had alleged that some officials of the Abia State Government House took cash from the Government House’s account, bought bank drafts with the money and allegedly lodged same in the account of Slok Nigeria Limited.

Under cross-examination by the ex-governor’s lawyer, Onyedilefu affirmed that he heard that Kalu was a successful businessman prior to becoming governor, “but I was not privileged to know.”

He also said he was not in a position, between 1999 and 2007, to have access to the executive minutes and memos emanating from the meeting of the Abia State Executive Council, where decision to award contracts could have been made.

Under cross-examination by the second defence counsel, Chief Solo Akuma (SAN), Onyedilefu affirmed that he did not know “all the contracts that were awarded and paid for when he was not the Accountant General of Abia State.”

In response to the third defence counsel, Chief K.C. Nwofor (SAN), Onyedilefu affirmed that there was no signature on the schedule detailing the salaries that Kalu received as governor in eight years

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