Lagos judge orders forfeiture of Yahaya Bello’s alleged properties

Justice Nicholas Oweibo of the Federal High Court, sitting in Lagos, has ordered the forfeiture of 14 properties believed to be owned by the governor of Kogi state, Yahaya Bello.

He also directed that the order should be published within 14 days while interested parties are to appear before him to defend why a permanent forfeiture order should not be granted.

Oweibo gave the order based on the ex-parte motion filed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). The said properties are located in Lagos, Abuja, and the United Arab Emirates.

The Dubai apartment, according to EFCC’s counsel Rotimi Oyedepo, is located in the world’s tallest building – the Burj Khalifa – in Dubai, UAE. He told the court that the affected properties were “reasonably suspected to have been derived from unlawful activity”.

In addition, Oyedepo implored the court to order the forfeiture of N400 million equally believed to have been derived unlawfully and meant for purchase of a certain “Plot No. 1224 Bishop Oluwole Street, Victoria Island, Lagos”. The EFCC told the court that it recovered the money from one Aminu Falala, who is suspected to be a relation of Governor Bello.

The case was adjourned till March 28, 2023.

The EFCC, on February 8, arraigned in absentia the governor’s wife, Rashida, and one Ali Bello who is said to be the governor’s nephew for laundering N2billion (Three Billion Naira).





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