Gov. Okowa Disowns “Cousin” Auctioneer In Alleged N350m Scam **Disclaims Private Zenith Bank Account

**Plans To Investigate Alleged Officials’ Corrupt Practices

Delta state governor, Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa has denied that Mr. D.O Nwachukwu, founder of Nwachukwu Auctioneering Services, currently handling the ongoing auction of unserviceable assets in Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) in the state, is his biological cousin.

The governor made the denial during a quarterly press briefing on Wednesday, March 21, 2018 while reacting to an alleged involvement of the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Barr. Festus Ovie Agas, Secretary to the State Government (SSG) and Secretary, Board of Survey on Unserviceable Assets, Mr. Jaho Adams, among other top government officials in a N350 million fraud.

They were alleged to have conned unsuspecting buyers of the disposable items which include vehicles, power generating plants, hospital equipment, electrical appliances, computers, furniture, beds, generators, Marcopolo buses and machinery across the state, into paying amounts ranging from between N2 and N20 million into a private Zenith Bank account bearing Afam Dynasty Limited (account number 1015329614), operated by one Mr. Afam Adingupu, Operations Manager of Nwachukwu Auctioneering Services.

It was also alleged that instead of issuing the official receipts reflecting the true amounts paid for the items, the board, in connivance with the auctioneer, has been issuing receipts reflecting N150, 000, to be supposedly paid into the government coffers through the Board of Survey on Unserviceable Assets account (0066875580) at Sterling Bank.

Governor Okowa reacted thus:
“I want to thank all of you and I also want to appeal very promptly. Sometimes we know that there are lots of reports that go on and in the social media all manner of things are said. When you sit on this kind of office, you have to tolerate all manner of things but it is only just fair that sometimes we should carry out what is called investigative journalism before you come out here to make assertions.

“D.O Nwachukwu is not my cousin in the first instance, you would have been able to find out that and secondly I’m aware that long before I came into government, D.O Nwachukwu has been a licensed auctioneer for several years, right from the defunct Bendel state. So its not not a question of whether he is competent or not but he is not my cousin. That information was not correct.

“As to whether there are corrupt practices, it is for me to check to see what is going on. I have just asked them to verify the Zenith Bank account number and they said it does not exist in Zenith Bank. I am going to investigate it still to the end but please be sure that your information is credible because sometimes when you accuse somebody wrongly, it is not about me, when you accuse somebody wrongly, it is not fair because you may not have this gathering again to refute the story and I think that there is the need to check that out.

“But till tomorrow, I have enough confidence in the Secretary to the State Government. I have more than enough confidence in him.”

News Reporter
Blank NEWS Online founding Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, Albert Eruorhe Ograka, is a Graduate of Mass Communication. He also holds a Post Graduate Diploma (PGD) in Journalism from the International Institute of Journalism (IIJ).

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