Group managing director (GMD) of an oil marketing firm, Triumph Oil and Gas Madgascar Nigeria Limited, Ibrahim Olanrewaju Mahmud, has been charged with attempting to defraud the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to the tune of $100million.
Mahmud, who was arraigned before a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on a six-count charge, marked: CR/1041/2020 was also accused of forging the signatures of the CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, Special Assistant to the President, Sabiu Yusuf and the GMD of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mele Kyari.
According the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mahmud, who allegedly claimed to be a deputy governor in CBN, was said to have taken the said forged documents to the apex bank to demand for the payment of $100m for the contract he claimed his firm was awarded by the CBN.
Mahmud was said to have also claimed that his firm was engaged to monitor and supervise major Federal Government’s infrastructure projects, forfeited assets and government businesses, for which the CBN approved the payment of the $100m.
Upon being confronted with Mahmud’s claims, the CBN was said to have referred the case to the EFCC for investigation, following which the investigating agency found that, not only was his firm not registered, the documents he paraded were of doubtful origin.
Mahmud, who pleaded not guilty and was granted bail by Justice Halilu Yusuf yesterday in Abuja and ordered to be returned to the Kuje prison following his inability to meet the bail conditions.
At the mention of the case yesterday prosecuting lawyer, Benjamin Manji said the case was for trial and that he was ready and had his witness in court.
Defence lawyer, J. K. Kolawole pleaded for time to enable him familiarise himself with the case, claiming he was new in the matter.
With EFCC’S lawyer not opposing the defence lawyer’s application, Justice Yusuf adjourned till January 24 for definite trial, during which an official of the CBN is expected to testify for the prosecution