Former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Babachir Lawal was yesterday detained by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). Lawal will be arraigned today.

The commission had filed a 10-count charge against the former SGF and five others.

Others are: Hamidu David Lawal; Sulaiman Abubakar; Apeh John Monday; Rholavision Engineering Limited and Josmon Technologies Limited.

All the suspects will face trial in the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, for alleged N544, 119, 925.36 for the removal of Invasive plant species and simplified irrigation.

But ahead of the arraignment, the former SGF was taken into custody yesterday day.

A source said: “We have detained the former SGF and some suspects in preparation of their arraignment in court on Tuesday.

“They have been served charges and their trial will commence. The EFCC team is ready for the prosecution of the suspects with its witnesses ready accordingly.”

On the charge sheet dated January 30, and filed by Offem Uket, M. S. Abubakar and Abba Muhammed, the EFCC accused Lawal of holding “indirectly a private interest in the contract awarded to Rholavision Engineering Limited and Josmon Technologies Ltd by the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF) through the Presidential Initiative for North East (PINE).

The contracts are:

Consultancy contract awarded to Rholavision Engineering Ltd for the removal of invasive plant species and simplified irrigation to the tune of N7,009,515.96

Consultancy contract awarded to Rholavision Engineering Ltd for the removal of invasive plant species and simplified irrigation to the tune of N6,453,318.38.

Contract awarded to Josmon Technologies Ltd but executed by Rholavision Engineering Ltd for the removal of invasive plant species and simplified irrigation to the tune of N272,524,356.02.

Contract awarded to Josmon Technologies Ltd but executed by Rholavision Engineering Ltd for the removal of invasive plant species and simplified irrigation to the tune of N258,132,735.00.

The charges read in part: “That you, Engr, Babachir David Lawal while being the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and a Director of Rholavision, Hamidu David Lawal being a director of Rholavision Engineering Limited, Sulaiman Abubakar being a staff of Rholavision Engineering Limited on or about the 7th of March 2016 at Abuja in the Abuja Judicial Division of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory did conspire to commit an offence to wit: fraudulent acquisition of property and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 26 (1) (c ) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000 and punishable under Section 12 of the same Act.

“That you, Engineer Babachir David Lawal while being the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Hamidu David Lawal; Sulaiman Abubakar; Apeh Monday John being the Managing Director of Josmon Technologies Ltd and Rholavision Engineering Ltd on or about February, 2016 at Abuja did conspire to commit an offence to wit: fraudulent acquisition of a private interest in contract awarded to Josmon Technologies Ltd and thereby, committed an offence contrary to Section 26 (1) (c) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000 and punishable under Section 12 of the same Act.

“That you, Engineer Babachir David Lawal while being the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and a director of Rholavision Engineering Ltd on or about the 4th of March, 2016 at Abuja did knowingly hold indirectly a private interest in the contract awarded to Josmon Technologies Ltd but executed by Rholavision Engineering Ltd for the removal of invasive plant species and simplified irrigation to the tune of N272,524,356.02 by the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF) through the Presidential Initiative for North East (PINE) and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 12 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000.

“That you Engineer Babachir David Lawal while being the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and a director of Rholavision Engineering Ltd on or about the 22nd August, 2016 at Abuja did knowingly hold indirectly a private interest in the contract awarded to Josmon Technologies Ltd but executed by Rholavision Engineering Ltd for the removal of invasive plant species and simplified irrigation to the tune of N258,132,735.00 by the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF) through the Presidential Initiative for North East (PINE) and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 12 of the Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Act, 2000.”

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