A witness in the ongoing trial of Tahir Abdullahi Garba, a chief accountant in the Pension Office of the Office of the Head of Service of the Federation whose company, Charo Bureau De Change Limited was allegedly used to siphon stolen pension funds, Mohammed Goji today told Justice Gabriel Kolawole of the Federal High Court, Maitama, Abuja that, a number of fraudulent payments were made into the accused person’s account from the Pension Account.
Led in evidence by counsel to EFCC, Egwuagu Emmanuel, Goji told the court that, “our investigation revealed that, fraudulent payments emanating from the office of Head of Service of the Federation known as collective allowances running into the several millions of naira were made into the accused person’s account.”
Goji, who is the third prosecution witness, PW3, and an operative with the Commission, through the prosecuting counsel, tendered Exhibit 1D &1E and Exhibit 4series dated August 31, 2009 which are all payment mandates from the office of the HOS in support of his claim.
“My Lord on March 31, 2010, another lodgement was made into Garba’s account with one of the new generation banks in the sum of N4.96m (four million, ninety-six thousand naira) as contained in Exhibit 1D”, Goji further stated.
According to him, a sum of N7.8m (seven million, eight hundred thousand naira) was transferred from the accused person’s account to Zenith Bank on April 3, 2010. He tendered the account opening package obtained from the bank in support of his claim.
Goji however revealed that, “our team of investigators also came across a circular to the effect that, all Federal Ministries and Parastatals are directed that all payments should be e-payment without a movement of cash.”
Justice Kolawole has adjourned to July 21, 2015 for continuation of hearing.
Garba is being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC alongside his company, Charo Bureau De Change Limited on a 23-count charge of fraud to the tune of N514.9m, allegedly stolen from the Pension Account, Office of the Head of Service of the Federation.