A Kaduna State High Court, on Thursday, remanded a whistleblower, by name Abubakar Sani-Chindo, in prison for allegedly providing false information that led to the raid on former Vice-President Namadi Sambo’s residence in Kaduna by officials of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offence Commission on June 28.
According to the Punch, Sambo’s house was raided thrice by the anti-graft agency, but failed to find incriminating documents or stashed cash in the building.
The ICPC, in a two counts charge before Justice Aliyu Mohammed, the Counsel for the ICPC, Elijah Akaakohol, said the whistleblower had on June 21, 2017, given false information to the commission that led to the reported raid.
According to the commission, the suspect reported to them that that sometime in 2013 he conveyed a huge sums of money, both in Nigerian and other foreign currencies from the Abuja airport to a house at Ungwan Rimi, GRA, on the directive of an Army officer, which money he suspected to be ill-gotten wealth and was still lying in boxes at the moment of his report.
The Count one of the charges read:
“That you, Abubakar Sani-Chindo (alias Abdullahi Mohammed) (m), sometime on June 21, 2017 or thereafter at Kaduna, Kaduna State within the jurisdiction of this honourable court knowingly gave a false information to an officer of the commission that sometime in 2013 you conveyed huge sums of money, both in Nigerian and other foreign currencies from the Abuja airport to a house at Ungwan Rimi, GRA, on the directive of an Army officer, which money you suspected to be ill-gotten wealth and is still lying in boxes at the moment of your report and of which you made the officers of the commission to carry out a sting operation that turned out to be false, and you committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 64(3)of the Corrupt Practices and other related offences Act 2000.
“That you, Abubakar Sani-Chindo (alias Abdullahi Mohammed) (m) sometime on June 21, 2017, or thereafter at Kaduna, Kaduna State, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, knowingly made a false statement to Mr. Olusegun Adigun, an officer, in the exercise of his duties as a public officer, which led the officer of the commission of the ICPC to carry out a sting operation that turned out to be false, thereby committing an offence, contrary to Section 25(1) and punishable under Section 25(1b) of the ICPC act 2000.”
Sani-Chindo, however, pleaded not guilty to all the charges and Justice Mohammed ordered that he be remanded in prison custody.
The case has been adjourned to November 2 to enable the accused person to secure a counsel.
The Federal Government last year set up the Whistleblower programme to make it easy for the public to give information bordering on violation of financial regulations, mismanagement of public funds and assets and other financial malpractice.
And as at March 2017, the Ministry of Finance, says it has so far received 2,351 tips from whistleblowers bordering on cases of embezzlement of government funds, looting of assets and contract inflation, among others.