Governor Obi sued over alleged diversion of N5bn state fund

By IKECHUKWU NNOCHIRI

ABUJA — Former member of the House of Representatives, Mr. Chudi Offodile, has dragged Anambra State government before a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, alleging that a company owned by the family of  Governor Peter Obi was used to divert about N5billion from the state treasury.

The plaintiff, who  listed the said company, Next International Limited and six others as defendants in the matter, further maintained that part of the siphoned funds were used by the governor to establish Sabmiller Breweries situated in Onitsha.

Other defendants in the matter are Intafact Beverages Limited, Sabmiller Nigeria Holdings BV, Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

In the suit which he filed through his counsel, Mr. Patrick Ikwueto, SAN, Offodile, was, among other things, seeking a declaration that the brewery (Intafact Brewery) established by the first defendant, Intafact Beverages Limited, is a bon afide property of and wholly belongs to the government of Anambra State.

He equally prayed the court for an order directing the 1st, 2nd and 3rd defendants to render full and complete account of the operation including the costs of the establishment of the brewery, opened with monies belonging to the government of Anambra State and known as Intafact Brewery, Onitsha Anambra State.

Besides, Offodile, further asked the court for an order directing the 5th defendant (Corporate Affairs Commission) to rectify the records of the 1st defendant by removing the names of the 2nd and 3rd defendants as the shareholders/directors of the 1st defendant.

In what he termed as the particulars of the alleged fraud, Offodile  averred that as at April 12, 2011, the 1st defendant did not have 300 shares of N100, 000 each purportedly allotted and as represented by the written resolution of the Board of Directors of Intafact Beverages Limited dated April 12, 2012.

Offodile further stated that “at the Commissioning of the Brewery, His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Anambra State openly stated that the value of the investment by the government of Anambra State in the Brewery is in excess of N2billion.”

The matter has been assigned to Justice M.L.Mohammed of the high court who has fixed April 30 for hearing.

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