Dimeji BankOle discharged, acquitted of N9bn scam charge

A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has discharged and acquitted the former speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr Dimeji Bankole, of any complicity in a 16-count charge brought against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) amounting to N9 Billion.

The former speaker was standing trial on a 16 criminal count charge of contract inflation and fraudulent embezzlement of public funds.

Ruling on the no-case submission filed by Mr Bankole, after the prosecution team had called its witnesses, Justice Evon Chukwu stated that there was no evidence linking the accused person to the alleged scam.

Justice Chukwu held that, to prove the case against the former speaker, the EFCC must prove that the accused person colluded with the supplier or contractor to supply at inflated prices. He said the EFCC was unable to prove such.

The EFCC had dragged Mr Bankole to court over a scam involving the purchase of 2 bullet-proof range rover vehicles, another 2 range rover vehicles, three Mercedes Benz 600 cars, 400 units of Dstv systems, 400 television sets, 800 units of desktop computers, 100 units of sharp digital photocopiers as well as 400 units of Laserjet 2600n.

The EFCC alleged that the purchases were in contravention of sections 17 to 56 of the procurement act of 2007.

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