A former governor of Zamfara State, Abdulazeez Yari has lost $669,248.89 and N24,289,910.89 to the Federal Government. The money was lodged in Yari’s two personal accounts and the accounts operated by his companies, BT Oil and Gas Nigeria Limited and Kayatawa Nigeria Limited.
The sums of N217,388,040 and $311,872 found in a bank account belonging to BT Oil and Gas Nigeria Limited and another N11,159,674.80 and $301,319.99 kept in an account belonging to Kayatawa Nigeria Limited were also forfeited to the government.
Also, the ICPC has placed under interim forfeiture 29 duplexes in different estates in Jabi, Maitama, Kaduna, Zamfara and Abuja allegedly belonging to the ex-governor, who is currently on trial for corruption.
The ICPC had accused Yari, a two-term governor, of not being truthful in his assets declaration.
It accused him of diverting Zamfara State’s funds, using some companies, including Kayatawa Nigeria Limited and B T Oil and Gas Nigeria Limited. It alleged that on June 18, 2015, BT Oil and Gas Nigeria Limited received a transfer of N150m from the Nigeria Governors’ Forum through Yari, who was then the chairman of the forum.
Justice Taiwo Taiwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, subsequently granted a motion by the ICPC seeking permanent forfeiture of the funds.
It could not be ascertained if Yari had appealed the forfeiture order as his lawyer, Mahmoud Magaji, could not be reached for comments on Saturday. He did not respond to calls and he had yet to reply to an SMS sent to his mobile telephone.
The ICPC stated that its motivation for seeking the orders was because “the victim of the alleged crime is the Zamfara State Government and by extension the Federal Government of Nigeria and innocent taxpayers, which include judges of courts across Nigeria.”