By Wilson Uwujaren -Ag. Head, Media & Publicity
Two officers of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Douglas William and Abba Ishaku, who were arraigned on October 17, 2010, before an Abuja High Court presided over by Justice Abubakar Umar in a four-count charge bordering on conspiracy and obtaining money under false pretence were on October 4, 2012, sentenced to five years imprisonment without an option of fine.
William and Ishaku were sentenced to two years each on counts one and two; and six months each on counts three and four. The sentences are however to run concurrently.
The two officers were arrested in 2010 in a ‘sting operation’. Until their arrest, the duo were stationed at the reception of the EFCC headquarters in Wuse, Abuja.
Trouble started for the officers when they allegedly demanded for N100, 000 from Kullima Kachalla, a former Chairman of Bama Local Government in Borno state in 2010, by posing as investigators of the EFCC.
They were alleged to have asked Mr. Kachalla to send them the money in order to bribe other investigators of the Commission to destroy a petition written to the EFCC, which indicted him (the former chairman) for alleged mismanagement of public funds.
During trial, the court was told that Mr. Kachalla had alerted the EFCC of the action of the two accused persons, necessitating an undercover operation, where an EFCC officer, posing as Mr. Kachalla’s representative, arranged a meeting with the accused.
Ishaku, second accused, allegedly called Mr. Kachalla by telephone, asking him to bring the money to the Commission’s office in Wuse, Abuja. It was in the course of the receipt of the money that the two staff were arrested and subsequently arraigned.
In his ruling, Justice Umar said because the convicts have suffered enough humiliation, their sentence should start from the date of their arraignment being October 18, 2010.