How Ex-HoS, Oyo-Ita Diverted N3bn Under Buhari

Former Head of Service (Ex-HoS) Winifred Oyo-Ita and her cohorts allegedly siphoned a staggering sum of over N3 billion from public coffers under the administration of President Buhari. This shocking revelation came to light during the trial proceedings at the Federal High Court, Maitama, Abuja.

The prosecution’s eighth witness, Hamma Bello, detailed before Justice James Omotosho how Oyo-Ita and her associates orchestrated the diversion of funds into their private enterprises. The accused, including Oyo-Ita, her special assistants Ugbong Effiok and Garba Umar, along with six companies, are facing charges ranging from misappropriation to money laundering.

According to Bello, Oyo-Ita allegedly utilized Slopes International Limited and Good Deal Investments Limited to unlawfully secure government contracts for herself through Umar. Bello stated, “Upon analyzing them, we realized he (Umar) was paid several sums of money from the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing where he is an employee.”

Among the companies implicated in the scheme are Frontline Ace Global Services Limited, Asanaya Projects Limited, Slopes International Limited, U and U Global Services Ltd, Prince Mega Logistics Ltd, and Good Deal Investments. These entities allegedly served as conduits for funneling public funds into personal accounts.

Bello disclosed, “The seventh defendant incorporated Asanaya Projects Limited in his name with the knowledge of the first defendant and that approvals were granted and payments made to the seventh defendant either through his personal account or to the account of the company.”

Further unraveling the web of corruption, Bello revealed transactions involving other companies. He stated, “Exhibit O is the Fidelity Bank account of Prince Mega Logistics Ltd. On March 27, 2018, and April 6, 2018, there were four entries… from Thomson Titus Okure.” These transactions allegedly involved payments to various individuals, including Oyo-Ita herself.

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During the investigation, the witness claimed that Oyo-Ita’s phone records revealed incriminating conversations with contractors and subordinates. He added, “She also voluntarily made a statement to the EFCC.”

The gravity of these allegations underscores the extent of corruption within the corridors of power. The misappropriation of such colossal sums deprives the nation of vital resources needed for development and service delivery. The trial is scheduled to reconvene on April 30, 2024.