The former Governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari, was on Tuesday detained by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission over alleged illegal financial dealings and misappropriation of funds.
Yari who was once the former Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum was arrested by the anti-graft agency and taken to the Sokoto office of the commission where he was questioned for hours.
The former Governor was first questioned by the commission in February 2021, while the Federal High Court in Abuja, ordered the final forfeiture of funds belonging to Yari domiciled in Zenith and Polaris Banks.
The judgment followed investigations that Yari had suspicious monies stuffed in his bank accounts including the sum of $56,056.75 reportedly lodged in his account with Polaris Bank; N12.9m, N11.2m, $303m, N217,388.04, and $311.8m said to be kept in different Zenith Bank accounts in the name of the ex-governor and his companies.
The spokesman of EFCC, Wilson Uwujaren, last Tuesday confirmed the detention of Yari, noting that he was questioned for at least seven hours before he was detained.
According to SaharaReporters, Yari was detained due to the continued investigation of the case which was opened in February 2021 centring around over N300 billion he attempted to move from a corporate account linked to him in a commercial bank.
The invitation letter dated April 6, given to Yari to report at the Sokoto EFCC office, was signed by the EFCC’s Director of Operations, Abdulkarim Chukkol, and stated that Yari’s interrogation is based on “conspiracy, diversion of public funds and money laundering.”
The former Governor is also being investigated over his alleged roles in the judgment debts around the Paris Club refunds as claimed by some private firms.
A court document was filed by the EFCC in 2017 which reveals the suspicious nature of payments by the Yari-led NGF to the consultants and firms who were said to have helped the forum to recover funds with the London and Paris clubs loan between 1995 and 2002.
In the document, the EFCC had stated that it received intelligence in January 2017 alleging “conspiracy, criminal misappropriation of public funds involving the sum of N19,439,225,871.11 out of the Paris Club refunds made by the Federal Government in favour of the 36 states of the federation.”
The commission had in the court filing, sought an order of forfeiture of N500 million and $500,000 allegedly recovered from Yari.
Source: Naija News