I helped Ohakim conceal $2.29m cash mansion purchase – Witness

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A witness of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr. Abu Sule, told a Federal High Court in Abuja on Monday how he allegedly helped a former Governor of Imo State, Ikedi Ohakim, to conceal the ownership of a mansion in Asokoro, Abuja, which he said the ex-governor bought with $2.29m in November 2008.

Sule was the Managing Director of Tweenex Consociates H.D Ltd, the company allegedly used by Ohakim to conceal his ownership of the property.

Ohakim who was Imo State governor between 2007 and 2011 is facing three counts of money laundering charges arising from his alleged purchase of the house60, Kwame Nkrumah Street, Plot No 1098, Cadastral ZoneA04, Asokoro District, Abuja, with cash payment of dollar equivalent of N270m in November 2008.

He was also accused of failing to declare the property as part of his assets when asked by the EFCC to do so.

The prosecution said the offences bordering on cash payment of N270m violated section 15(1)(d) and section 14(1)(b) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2004.

Sule, who is the second prosecution witness in the case, told Justice Adeniyi Ademola, on Monday that the former governor instructed him to use his (Sule’s) company, Tweenex Consociates H.D Ltd, to buy the property.

Led in evidence by the prosecution counsel, Mr. Festus Keyamo, Sule who described Ohakim as his “senior friend and benefactor”, said Ohakim subsequently put pressure on him to prepare a tenancy agreement in order to conceal the former governor’s ownership of the house.
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