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EFCC quizzes Ortom’s aide over alleged N42m fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) says it Makurdi Zonal Office has commenced investigations into allegations of misappropriation of N42 million funds involving Lt.-Col. Paul Hembah (rtd).

Hembah is the Special Adviser on Security Matters to Gov. Samuel Ortom of Benue.

Mr Dele Oyewale, the EFCC spokesperson, disclosed this in a statement on Thursday in Abuja.

Oyewale said that Hembah abused his office on July 12, 2019.

He said that the aide transferred 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 group commandant, George Mbessey, instead of using the official account.

“The alleged offence, if established, violates Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011,” the commission’s spokesperson said.

Oyewale further stated that 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.

The EFCC had on May 27, arrested Mbessey in connection with alleged mismanagement of the N449.5 million meant for the vigilante

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