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N2.5b DSO Contract: ICPC Files Charges Against NBC DG, Three Others

The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has filed charges against the Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) Is’haq Kawu Modibbo and three others over alleged irregularities in the award of a N2.5billion alleged Digital Switch Over (DSO) contract.

The others are Dipo Onifade, Sir Lucky Omonuwa and Pinnacle Communications Limited.

Omonuwa was accused of transferring N537. 25million out of the N2.5billion to a Bureau De Change operator for the dollar equivalent.

The said dollar equivalent was delivered in cash to Omonuwa at his residence in Kaduna.

All the suspects will face trial for 12-count charge before a Federal High Court in Abuja.

But no date has been fixed for their arraignment.

The charges, dated January 14, 2019, were however filed by Henry Emore and Adenekan Shogunle.

The charges read in part: “That you, Is’haq Kawu Modibbo, Sir Lucky Omonuwa and Dipo Onifade sometime between December 2016 and May 2017 in Abuja within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, conspired with each other to use the position of, Is’haq Kawu Modibbo as the Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission(NBC) to confer corrupt advantage on Sir Lucky Omonuwa, your friend and associate by recommending to the Hon. Minister of Information and Culture to approve payment of N2.5billion to Pinnacle Communications Limited, a private company owned by Sir Lucky Omonuwa as seed grant under the DSO of the Federal Government of Nigeria when you knew that the said company was not entitled to receive such grant and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 26(1) (c ) and punishable under Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.

“That you, Is’haq Kawu Modibbo on or about the 11th May, 2017 in Abuja, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court used your position as the Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission(NBC) to confer corrupt advantage on Sir Lucky Omonuwa, your friend and associate by recommending to the Hon. Minister of Information to approve payment of N2.5billion to Pinnacle Communications Limited, a private company owned by Sir Lucky Omonuwa as seed grant under the DSO of the Federal Government of Nigeria when you knew that the said company was not entitled to receive such grant and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.

“That you, Is’haq Kawu Modibbo on or about the 11th May, 2017 in Abuja, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court knowingly made a statement in a memo dated 11th May 2017 to the Minister of Information and Culture with intent to mislead him in the performance of his duties as supervisor of the disbursement of the sum of N10billion released by the Federal Government of Nigeria to facilitate the Digital Switch-Over Programme by recommending the payment of N2.5billion to Pinnacle Communications Limited, a private company owned by Sir Lucky Omonuwa and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 25(1) and punishable under Section 25(1) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.

“That you, Sir Lucky Omonuwa on or about 2nd June, 2017 in Abuja within the jurisdiction of this court received the sum of N2.55billion paid into Zenith Bank Plc account No. 1023875804 of Pinnacle Communications Limited by NBC, when you knew that the said sum is the subject of an offence under Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000 and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 24 and punishable under Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.

“That you Sir Lucky Omonuwa between June-August 2017 transferred an aggregate sum of N537.25million out of the sum of N2.5billion in the Zenith Bank Plc Account No. 1023875804 operated by Pinnacle Communications Limited to Sadat Investment Limited, a Bureau De Change operator and thereafter took possession of the dollar equivalent of the said sum which was delivered to you in cash at your residence in Kaduna when you knew that the said sum is a direct proceed of criminal activities to wit: conspiracy, false information to a public officer and abuse of office.

“You thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 11(a) and punishable under Section 15( C) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 s amended.”

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