An official order from the Federal High Court in Abuja has been issued for the arrest of former Niger Delta militant, Mr. Government Ekpemupolo Tompolo who is being investigated by the EFCC in connection with fraudulently selling a land for N13 billion to the last administration for the construction of a Nigerian Maritime University (NMU).
The bank accounts of the former militant’s companies, Mieka Divers Ltd and Global West Vessel Specialists Nigeria Ltd, used for the payment of the N13 billion has been frozen by the EFCC.
The EFCC specifically wishes to question Tompolo about the illicit sale of N13 billion land from him to the Federal Government. According to reports, the Federal Government wanted to construct the Nigerian Maritime University (NMU) and had diverted public funds through the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) to the militant.
Tompolo is reportedly hiding in the Niger Delta creeks; and has denied all insinuations that the land deal was fraudulent but insists it was transparently done, asking the EFCC to contact former President Goodluck Jonathan for clarification.
In December last year, Tompolo was wanted for questioning by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and had refused to honor their invitation claiming he was in court against the anti-corruption agency.
Government Ekpemupolo Tompolo, once a national fugitive, in the thick as one of the leaders running riots in the Niger Delta, perpetrating illegitimate bunkering, operating illegal refineries, vandalizing oil pipelines, engaging in kidnapping and piracy. Tompolo keyed in efficiently into the scattering of unorganized armed groups disrupting the multinational companies’ oil prospecting and producing operations, especially Shell’s.
He was particularly alleged to be a point man in the attacks against Shell, accusing it of environmental despoliation and exploitation. Helpless against the militants’ guerrilla attacks – and kidnapping of its officials, to boot – Shell quickly got the message. Tompolo’s operations turned into a protection racket, with Shell doling out payments to the young, ruthless militant and his associates to assure, at least, some measure of smooth operations.
Tompolo a former militant and commander, Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) rose to become a strong ally of the federal government during the immediate past administration, and a billionaire businessman who despite his violent past and little education, has grown to become one of the most influential Nigerians especially in the Niger Delta.