CLAIM: ‘‘I never faced N25 billion corruption charge’’ – says Goje
CONCLUSION: FALSE, Goje was actually charged for mismanaging a sum of N25billion while in office. The EFCC only withdrew the charges after he relinquished his candidacy as the Senate President.
The Senator representing Gombe Central Senatorial District Danjuma Goje on Thursday, July 18th, 2019, claimed that he ‘‘never faced N25 billion corruption charge’’ by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The Former Governor was charged for the mismanaging of 25billion naira while he was in office as Governor of the state. The EFCC has been prosecuting Mr. Goje for about eight years now.
Mr. Goje was one of the contestants for the office of Senate President at the 9th Assembly of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Mr. Goje on Thursday, 6th June, 2019 announced that he is stepping down from the race and therefore endorsed the candidacy of Ahmed Lawan.
However, the Former Governor denied being charged by the EFCC. In his words, ‘‘at no time did I face corruption charges totalling N25billion’’…insisting that the actual amount was N9billion.
Verification of the Claim:
It is not a new story that Mr. Goje was charged by the EFCC in the year 2013 for mismanaging N25billion while in office as a Governor.
The story signed by the Media and Publicity unit, dated 16th, May 2013 till now remains on the EFCC website.
Part of the statement with a screenshot from the site reads:
“Tumu, a food supplier to Gombe State Government House alongside the erstwhile governor of Gombe State, Muhammad Danjuma Goje and four others are facing N25 billion conspiracy and money laundering charge brought against them by EFCC’’.
As the report shows, the anti-graft agency has been prosecuting the former Governor for almost eight years and didn’t hand over the case to the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation.
More so, it was the Federal High Court that discharged Senator Danjuma Goje of the corruption charges filed against him. An official from the AGF’s office, Pius Akutah, told the court that he has an application to withdraw the charges. In his words as reported by PT:
“It’s in accordance with the power vested on the AGF by the constitution that we wish to withdraw the charges before your Lordship. This is our humble application and urge your Lordship to grant our application,” the official was quoted to have said.
The Judge Justice Babatunde Quadri in his final ruling said ‘‘pursuant to Section 174(1) particularly sub-section (b) and coupled with Section 108 (2) of 2015, “the application by the AGF to withdraw the charges is hereby granted.”
The former Governor and present Senator representing Gombe Central Senatorial District was charged for mismanaging a sum of N25billion while in office, although the EFCC only withdrew the charges after Mr. Goje stepped down as a candidate for the Senate Presidency.