A MEMBER of the Nigerian senate was on Thursday sentenced to 12 years imprisonment for a multi-billion naira fraud he committed while serving as a state governor between 1999 and 2007.
Orji Uzor Kalu was found guilty of a 34-count charge of fraud and money laundering to the tune of 7.65bn naira ($21.1 million) by a federal high court in Lagos. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Nigeria’s main anti-graft agency, led the prosecution against Kalu, also a former governor of the southeastern state of Abia.
According to EFCC, the former governor used his company’s account, Slok Nigeria Limited to retain money from Abia state government between August 2001 and October 2005 during his tenure. Kalu was charged alongside a former Abia State commissioner for finance, Jones Udeogo, and his company Slok Nig. Ltd.
Udeogo, the accomplice, was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment. The court also ruled that the Slok Nig. Ltd. should be wound up and its assets forfeited to the Nigerian government. Kalu was first arrested by the EFCC on July 11, 2007, on charges of corruption and was later released on bail.