Court orders final forfeiture of NOK University allegedly built with ‘stolen funds’ by Former FG Employer

Court orders final forfeiture of NOK University allegedly built with ‘stolen funds’ by Former FG Employer

 

The Federal High Court in Abuja has issued a final forfeiture order for NOK University, which is the first Indigenous Private University in Kaduna, and all associated assets reportedly linked to Anthony Hassan, a former Director of Finance and Accounts at the Federal Ministry of Health who served from 2016 to 2019.

In a 2022 ruling on an ex parte motion marked FHC/ABJ/CS/688/2022, filed by Ekele Iheanacho, counsel for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the court initially ordered the temporary forfeiture of the institution to the federal government.

The EFCC accused Hassan of diverting public funds to acquire the identified assets, allegedly running into billions of naira, through the government-integrated financial management information system (GIFMIS).

GIFMIS, an IT-based system for accounting and budget management, was established by the federal government to streamline fiscal processes.

In a statement, the EFCC announced the filing of a final forfeiture order for the properties, with Iheanacho presenting evidence that Hassan built NOK University using proceeds from unlawful activities traced to him.

Physical assets of the university forfeited include various buildings such as the senate building, ICT building, faculty of medicine building, science deanery building, two academic buildings, and a faculty hall.

Additionally, the judge ordered the interim forfeiture of other properties allegedly linked to Hassan, including the Gwasmyen water factory, Gwasmyen Event Centre, and Gwasmyen International Hotel.

“The Commission, through its investigative Officer, Adaora Asabe Oragudosi, investigated verified intelligence on criminal conspiracy, stealing, abuse of office, and money laundering against some Federal Ministry of Health staff, leading to the forfeiture of the identified properties,” the EFCC statement reads.

Delivering judgment on Friday, the court found that the respondent failed to provide sufficient evidence in his favor.

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