Adelani Adepegba, Abuja
The Coalition of Public Interest Lawyers and Advocates has, again, asked the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to revisit a case of alleged forgery and financial crimes involving the Minister of State, Mines and Steel, Uchechukwu Ogah.
The group stated that it gathered from the complainant, Mrs Bridget Adeosun, that no action had been taken on the case by the anti-graft commission almost two months after it sent a reminder dated February 28, 2020 to the agency on the petition against the minister.
Ogah had denied the allegations of forgery and financial crimes levelled against him.
But the Principal partner, COPA, Pelumi Olajengbesi, in the latest letter dated May 20, demanded that the forgery allegations against the minister should be revisited and investigated.
In 2011, the Managing Director, Mut-Huss Petroleum Ltd., Bridget Adeosun, had petitioned the EFCC alleging that Ogah forged her signature on a document to validate a nonexistent Memorandum of Understanding between his company, Masters Energy Oil & Gas and Mut-Hass Petroleum.
Ogah was arraigned by the police, but the case was reportedly withdrawn at the instance of the then Inspector-General of Police to allow detectives to gather more evidence. The matter was subsequently shelved.
Adeosun, thereafter, petitioned the anti-graft agency which immediately invited Ogah for interrogation.
However, the investigation has since stalled prompting COPA to send reminders to the EFCC on the matter.
The letter, addressed to the EFCC acting Chairman, Ibrahim Magu, read in part, “We refer to our letter dated February 28, 2020, to your office where we, on behalf of our client, demanded that the petition and investigation of Mr Uchechukwu Ogah for forgery and other financial crimes be revisited and properly addressed.
“As of the time of writing this reminder, we were reliably informed by our client that no action had been taken in that regard as no prosecutorial action has been taken against the said minister.”
When asked for update on Adeosun’s petition on Wednesday, the Head, Media and Publicity, EFCC, Dele Oyewale, pleaded for time to get information on the case. He had yet to respond to further calls at press time.