The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Monday April 3, 2017 arraigned five persons and two companies before Justice I. E. Ekwo of the Federal High Court, Calabar, Cross Rivers State on a five count charge bordering on alleged conspiracy, bid_ rigging, abuse of office and breach of due process contrary to the procurement Acts of 2007. The defendants are Professor Thomas U. Agan, Chief Medical Director, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Offor Jonan Offor, Head, Works and Engineering, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Francis I. Otu, chief Administrative Officer and head, Legal Services of the same hospital, . Others are Okocha Anthony, Emmanuel Etta Nkim, Anchor Industrial Construction Services Nigeria Limited and Basemark Energy Nigeria Limited. Also Read; Ibrahim Magu Maintains His Capacity To Serve As EFCC Boss
The trio of Professor Agan, Offor and Otu were said to have used their position to corruptly influence the award of contract to the other four accused persons. The contract was executed through inflated cost and so failed to follow due process with the accused persons corruptly enriching themselves to the tune of N85,062,000.00 thereby contravening the provisions of the Public Procurement Act 2007.
Count one of the charge reads, That you Prof. Thomas U. AGAN as chief Medical Director, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Offor Jonah Offor as Head of Woirks and Engineering, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Francis I. Utu as Chief Administrative officer and head of Legal Services, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Okocha Anthony being the alter ego of Anchor Industrial and Construction Services Nigeria Limited and Emmanuel Etta Nkim being the Alter Ego of Basemark Energy Nigeria Limited sometime in the month of October 2015 in Calabar, Cross Rivers State within the jurisdiction of this honourable court did conspired amongst yourselves to Bid rig for the
Purchase of one Advance Life Support Ambulance vehicle and one Toyota Coaster Bus 30 seater to Messrs Basemark Energy Nigeria Limited and Anchor Industrial and Construction Services Nigeria Limited contrary to Section 58(4) of the Public Procurement Act (PPA) 2007 and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 58(5) of the same Act.
When the charge was read to the defendants, they all pleaded not guilty.
In view of their please, the prosecution counsel, Kayode Oni asked the court to remand the defendants in prison custody and to fix a date for trial. However, attempt by the defence counsel, Mba Ukwenyi, Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, to move an oral application for bail for his clients was refused by the judge who ordered that a formal application by filed.
Justice Ekwo adjourned the case to May
8, 9,10, 11 and 12 for trial.
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