Return My Seized Assets, Ex-Governor Igbinedion Tells Court

Lucky Igbinedion

Lucky Igbinedion

In a bid to recover his assets forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria, the former governor of Edo state, Mr Lucky Nosakhare Igbinedion has filed an application before a Federal High Court in Lagos, southwest Nigeria, urging the court to compel the Federal Government to release forthwith all the assets that were forfeited in the interim in favour of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The assets include the following: a plot of four flats located at 43, Etete Road, Benin City; Chicken Republic, Sapele Road, Benin City; a parcel of land at 3 Boundary Road, Benin City; a building covered by approved building plan 2041/2004 located at 20B, Etete Road, Benin City and a building known as Whitehouse along Ugbor Police Station Road by house 55.

Others include a landed property at Asoko, Abuja at 7 Justice Fatai Williams Street, Off Justice Sowemimo Street, Asokoro, Abuja; a mighty house at the neighbourhood of Etete located between Idufodie Street and Ogbomo Street, Benin City; Sheraton Hotels located at Government House Road, Benin City; a landed property located at 55B C Adebisi Omotola Close, off Samuel Adedoyin Street, Victoria Island Lagos; the landed property located at 5, Janumugbe Crescent, Maitama, Abuja and a house in London located at 29, Shedion Avenue, Highgate, London, NE4JB.

An affidavit sworn to by a legal practitioner, Ferdinand Esewe as filed before the court by a Lagos lawyer, Chief Richard Oma Ahonaruogho, avered that on 28 February, 2013, a federal High Court in Benin City ordered that the assets and properties listed above be in the interim attachment in favour of the Federal Republic of Nigeria pending the determination of charge number FHE/B/11/11C/2011 between Federal Republic of Nigeria versus Lucky Nosakhare Igbinedion and six others.

Mr Esewe avered further that by a ruling delivered by the court on the 31 May, 2011, by Justice Adamu Hobon of the Federal High Court sitting in Benin ordered a ruling whereby Lucky Nosakhare Igbinedion was discharged from the proceedings.

Mr Esewe avered that he was informed by Igbinedion and his father, Sir Gabriel Osawaru Igbinedion, who is the Chief Executive Officer of Okada Air Nigeria Limited, on Friday 3May, 2013 that despite the ruling of the court it has become impossible to do business with any of the assets attached pursuant to the interim order of the court because the Federal Government upon securing the interim order of attachment caused to be published in records of world bank listing of ineligible firms and individuals, international fraud blacklist and all banks and financial institutions operating in Nigeria.

It was alleged that some of the properties listed above belong to other corporations and third parties including Okada Air Nigeria Limited and Sir Gabriel Osawaru Igbinedion.

The Federal Government has failed to release the assets despite the ruling of the court.

Consequently, the former governor while claiming the sum of N100 million for the wrongful attachment of the assets when he has been discharged from the criminal proceedings, is urging the court to compel the Federal Government to release forthwith from forfeiture all the assets listed above.

—Akin Kuponiyi

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