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EFCC Quizzes Ortom’s Aide Over Alleged N42m Fraud

Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom
Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State

BEVERLY HILLS, June 11, (THEWILL) – The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has commenced investigations into allegations of misappropriation of funds to the tune of N42 million, involving an aide of Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State, Lieutenant Colonel Paul Hembah (retired).

Hembah, who is Governor Ortom’s Special Adviser on Security Matters allegedly abused his office on July 12, 2019 when he transferred a sum of N42 million from the official account of his office to his personal bank account and withdrew the same in cash the same day. The said sum was meant for disbursement to Benue State Vigilante Group, BSVG.

The governor’s aide between October 2018 and May 2020 also allegedly abused his office by fraudulently paying the N20 million monthly allocation meant for BSVG into the personal account of the Commandant of the group, George Mbessey instead of using the official account of the group.

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The alleged offence, if established, violates Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011.

Hembah, who was quizzed for over six hours on Wednesday, volunteered useful information to EFCC investigators and would be arraigned in court as soon as investigations are concluded.

Recall that the EFCC on May 27, 2020 arrested the State Commandant of the Benue State Vigilante Group, George Mbessey in connection with alleged mismanagement of the N449.5million meant for the Benue State Vigilante Group, BSVG.